Barbell training as spinal rehabilitation Barbell training as spinal rehabilitation

starting strength gym
Results 1 to 5 of 5

Thread: Barbell training as spinal rehabilitation

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2014
    Posts
    182

    Default Barbell training as spinal rehabilitation

    • phoenix arizona seminar date
    • texas seminar date
    14 years ago at the age of 28 I elected to have spinal surgery to bone graft the pars defects on my symptomatic L5/S1 spondylolysis. Having nearly died from a post operative infection I was left, 6 months later, with a virtually non existent paralumbar musculature with spinous processes protruding from the scar tissue in a ridge. After a further 6 months of extremely uncomfortable daily soft tissue mobilsation I started to return to some activity; i.e walking on a daily basis. Eventually, after a decent amount of effort, I got back into some low level recreation (surfing, skiing). A spell using a concept 2 improved things (quite a bit) further but I was still rather weak although conditioned.
    I started ‘playing’ with weights in a slightly clueless manner in 2009 but fortunately discovered SS in early 2010. As everyone here knows the level of detail describing the basic exercises just does not exist elsewhere. It was immediately clear to me that as long as I trained with excellent form I would not injure myself further and, indeed, might actually improve. Obviously, the rate limiting step was my paralumbar musculature meaning that my novice progression was not particularly lengthy.
    Over the past 4 years I have had many layoffs; some for travel but others simply because it felt like I would snap if I put another 2.5 kg on the bar. I filmed or asked my wife to observe all my early workouts until I was confident of maintaining a natural lumbar lordosis at all times. Although it is unlkely that I’ll ever reach a level considered strong by strength athletes taking my deadlift from 50Kg x 5 to 150Kg X 6 (done in good form with a controlled eccentric phase) has made a massive difference to my life. I no longer feel like a spinal cripple with chronic pain.
    Thanks Rip

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    North Texas
    Posts
    39,289

    Default

    Excellent job, John. Join the ranks of Those Who Refuse Their Fate.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Posts
    5,993

    Default

    Well done, John. Your experience is far from unique. I've trained lots of people with spinal problems, from herniations to scoliosis to actual spinal cord damage, and all of them are better than they were before. Things aren't completely resolved, but they're better. Well, except for the ones who chicken out early on, but luckily most don't do that. Everyone gets better.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2014
    Posts
    182

    Default

    Thanks,
    Kyle, that's interesting. I've always been reluctant to extrapolate from my experience to other spinal pathologies when giving advice to others (emergency medicine). I still would be hesitant, of course, but given proper coaching it's great to know that getting stronger works. I'm sure the greatest hurdle is getting people to actually begin.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Posts
    5,993

    Default

    With everyone I believe the movement is more important than the load. Build quality, and the quantity will come. This is simply more true for people with relevant injuries than for entirely healthy people, especially since entirely healthy people are vanishingly rare. Almost everyone's got something wrong with them, it's merely a matter of degree.

    Getting people to begin is a big issue, yes. But if they do begin then at some point later on it gets hard, getting them past this is not easy. At some point come the grindy reps and the prospect of being buried under the weight. Everyone thinks about weaseling out at this point, whether they have previous injuries or not. "Kyle actually I'd like to work on cardio for a while... also I'm getting a twinge just here... and... well training is kinda expensive... and..."

    The barbell works. But it's not easy. But then, as we were told in the army: the easy way is always mined.

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •