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Thread: EXERCISE after surgery

  1. #1
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    Default EXERCISE after surgery

    Hello there everyone,

    I have not been on here in a while, but it's been about 8 months since my operation and i am doing so great. My spine is pretty much straight, and I could not be happier.

    I have returned pretty much to all of my normal activities, and that includes exercising and working out. I have been doing a lot of cardio workouts lately, and the operation does not hinder me from doing so at all. the only thing that i have not done since my operation (as i am still a lil hesitant about trying it) is core workouts for my stomach (i.e. crunches, situps, pushups, ab exercises, etc.). I am fused from T5 until L3 (almost down to L4). I just want some of your advice about whether or not it would be wise to do any of these from your experience, and if not, what modified workouts you do to work out your core area without hurting your rods?

    Thanks for the advice.
    xo

  2. #2
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    tonibunny is offline T Sr: Admin, Big Sister and Da Police!
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    Default Re: EXERCISE after surgery

    Hiya

    I'm glad to hear you're doing so well! Has your surgeon confirmed that you're solidly fused yet? If not, then DO wait until you hear this before working on your abs.

    If you are solidly fused then you can certainly do ab exercises I'm fused to L4 and like to do sit-ups using a decline bench like this one:



    You lie head downwards on it with your knees hooked over the pads at the end, and can do sit-ups by pulling with your abs without needing to bend your spine. There's no need to jerk; try to be slow and controlled.

    Gym ball exercises are really good too. Try doing "The Plank" whilst lying on top of a gym ball And, if it's not too inconvenient, hydrotherapy exercises in a swimming pool are great to do (as well as normal swimming). Try holding onto the side of the pool and, keeping your body facing front, bring your knees up to a sitting position and then slowly turn them through 180 degrees from side to side.

    Have fun! You're obviously looking after yourself, and building up a strong core will help protect your lumbar spine for the future

    Toni xx
    37 years old, diagnosed with infantile idiopathic scoliosis at 6 months old with curves of 62(T) and 40(L) degrees. Casting and Milwaukee braces until surgery at 10 - ant release/pos fusion T1-T12, halo traction. Post op cast and then TLSO. Further surgery at 18 (ant release/pos fusion extended to L3 to include lumbar curve, costoplasty) and 25 (another costoplasty). Fusion extended to L4 at 33 (XLIF with 4 pedicle screws and two short rods). Pre-op curves: 76(T) and 70(L). Post-op curves: 45(T) and 35(L). Diagnosed with Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome aged 34; scoliosis almost certainly due to this rather than being idiopathic.

  3. #3
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    Default Re: EXERCISE after surgery

    Crunches are pretty terrible for your stomach so aren't the best idea anyway, fusion or no fusion! Planks, side planks, toe taps and "supermans" along with stomach vacuums are much better as they strengthen your abs and core without forcing your muscles down or apart and causing damage. Are you familiar with what they all are or would you like me to try and explain (and probably resort to YouTube videos )?!

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    Default Re: EXERCISE after surgery

    ToniBunny, thank you for your reply and description. I will try to find that machine when I go to the gym next to try it. Last time i went to the gym, i tried a machine where i would put in a certain amount of weights and then hold onto a handle and bring my back downwards. I did not have any back pain from it but i remember feeling it in my spine while doing it. that's normal, right?

    and GloomCookie, yes I would greatly appreciate videos of the exercises!! thank you

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    Default Re: EXERCISE after surgery

    Crikey Tonibunny I would have thought that inclined bench would be difficult enough for a fully fit person with no back problems whatsoever to do sit-ups on, let alone someone 8 months post-op, but then that's just my opinion. I didn't think that they recommended sit-ups at the gym anymore? I am only 3 months post-op so the thought of it just makes me cringe at the moment! Seriously though, I would speak to your surgeon first. Luv Kaz xx

  6. #6
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    Default Re: EXERCISE after surgery

    Well yes, that's why I stressed that LovelyCurves checked with her surgeon that she's fully fused before she try anything!

    I think gym ball exercises and yoga poses are probably a lot better for you, but many people ask specifically about sit-ups, and that bench is probably the safest way to do them (they're usually adjustable so you don't have to have such a steep angle!)
    37 years old, diagnosed with infantile idiopathic scoliosis at 6 months old with curves of 62(T) and 40(L) degrees. Casting and Milwaukee braces until surgery at 10 - ant release/pos fusion T1-T12, halo traction. Post op cast and then TLSO. Further surgery at 18 (ant release/pos fusion extended to L3 to include lumbar curve, costoplasty) and 25 (another costoplasty). Fusion extended to L4 at 33 (XLIF with 4 pedicle screws and two short rods). Pre-op curves: 76(T) and 70(L). Post-op curves: 45(T) and 35(L). Diagnosed with Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome aged 34; scoliosis almost certainly due to this rather than being idiopathic.

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    Default Re: EXERCISE after surgery

    Ok, as Toni said it's really important to check you're allowed to do them but these are my favourite exercises for core/abs that don't involve endless rounds of crunches and actually really work

    Sorry about the cheesy American videos!

    Basic Plank

    Side Plank

    Toe Taps

  8. #8
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    Default Re: EXERCISE after surgery

    Those videos are ace! I didn't know about the toe-taps, I'll start doing those
    37 years old, diagnosed with infantile idiopathic scoliosis at 6 months old with curves of 62(T) and 40(L) degrees. Casting and Milwaukee braces until surgery at 10 - ant release/pos fusion T1-T12, halo traction. Post op cast and then TLSO. Further surgery at 18 (ant release/pos fusion extended to L3 to include lumbar curve, costoplasty) and 25 (another costoplasty). Fusion extended to L4 at 33 (XLIF with 4 pedicle screws and two short rods). Pre-op curves: 76(T) and 70(L). Post-op curves: 45(T) and 35(L). Diagnosed with Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome aged 34; scoliosis almost certainly due to this rather than being idiopathic.

  9. #9
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    Default Re: EXERCISE after surgery

    Quote Originally Posted by tonibunny View Post
    Those videos are ace! I didn't know about the toe-taps, I'll start doing those
    They really are brilliant, you can feel them straight away and you have to work to keep your back flat on the floor so you know it's doing your core good!

    Side planks are pretty ace too, I never had defined obliques til I started doing them as part of my routine.

  10. #10
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    Default Re: EXERCISE after surgery

    I can't find a good video for the Superman exercise

    So, you get on your hands and knees into a box position (hands under shoulders and knees under hips) then raise your left arm and right leg out straight ahead of/behind you whilst staying as still as you can. Hold it for about a count of ten, then return to box position and do it with your right arm and left leg. Brilliant for stability

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