How to work out with a bad back?

  • notdonityet

    Posts: 6

    Oct 02, 2010 4:09 PM GMT
    I know that alot of you have delt with pain in your workouts. Well I suffer with fybromyalgia and some back problems. I weigh about 165 lbs average build. I was wondering if anyone had some tips on how to tighten up the stomach muscles and not kill the back at the same time. Also while training is it more about the weights or the reps of an exersize? I realy want to shape up a little even though my Doctor says not to. They have been wrong before. I'm not week just in pain all the time.
    Any help would be appreciated. Thank You
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Oct 02, 2010 4:27 PM GMT
    Since I got sciatica (a little over a month ago) my workouts have been limited to things that put no pressure on the lower back (pullups, dips, pushups, and a few home-rigged dumbbell exercises). Turns out there is quite a bit that CAN be done.

    I also picked up an inversion table - partially for the decompression, and partly for the inverted ab and oblique crunches. It's a fucking miracle machine for that.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Oct 03, 2010 5:22 AM GMT
    paulflexes saidI also picked up an inversion table - partially for the decompression, and partly for the inverted ab and oblique crunches. It's a fucking miracle machine for that.

    Ditto - I have a degenerative disc and love my Teeters inversion table, best invention ever and something you could probably begin using right away for simple inversion (ixney on the inverted crunches until you're medically cleared). But it's hard to offer advice without more specific information as to your condition, and this doctor that says don't exercise - is he an orthopedist? Shouldn't he recommend you start exercise with a physical therapist? I'd get a second opinion.

    I'm assuming that you should begin with a battery of stretching and physical therapy exercises for pain management because jumping into a more traditional workout regime might exacerbate existing imbalances. If you're prone to being thrown out of alignment I recommend that you avoid or at least be cautious performing any twisting torquing movements like oblique crunches. My gym has a lot of ab machines but my favorite is the Ab Coaster, which like inverted crunches works the lower abs but doesn't put any stress on your back - like the inversion table, it's only a few hundred dollars and if you only had room for two pieces of equipment in your home I'd get these.

    Using proper form is more important than weights or reps. With a bad back I'd adopt a low weight high rep regime. Once you strengthen your lower back you can experiment with upping the poundages because one of the most demotivating things you can do is suffer a setback by injuring yourself. Keep in mind that you have to work your back and abs equally to better protect your back and develop your core. I'd use hyperextension (low back) machines before progressing to actual hyperextensions and light deadlifts and avoid high impact movements and P90X style workouts. For cardio, swimming's the safest bet.
  • notdonityet

    Posts: 6

    Oct 09, 2010 11:30 AM GMT
    Thank you very much. as far as more info I suffer from fibromyalgia and L2-L5 is degenerating and the same problem with T1,2,3. The Doc did talk about stretching and such but I'd like to tone up a little. I try to stay active and keep up on my yard work but your right about movements. I stood up a few months ago the wrong way and it took me 3 weeks before I could even get into a car to see the doctor. I screwed up my back so bad I couldn't move. Its been a few yrs since I've worked out and I'm deffinately out of practice. I do want to pick up a machine and get back into shape.
    Thank you very much.