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Swimming makes back hurt

lilceellilcee Posts: 11
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:44 AM in Fibromyalgia
I was diagnosed with Fibromyalgia and I have a lot of back and shoulder pain. As well as leg pain. I heard that swimming is good for this but when I get into water over my waste, my chest and back hurt from the pressure of the water. I would like to do some water exercises but it hurts to get into the water past my waste. Does anyone else have this problem? Is it the fibro that makes it hurt when the water hits the pressure points?


  • Lilcee,

    Wow, never even thought about that aspect of Fibromyalgia! Makes sense though too sadly. Have you tried getting a 'noodle' so you can swim around on your back, side, belly etc.? This way you can still get hopefully the benefit of the swim, and let your stress levels drop a little?

    For me, spine issues and Peripheral Neuropathy, the pool is better than any pills by far!! I hope something works for you. The noodles by the way only cost a few dollars. Take care. Gentle *hug*

    PCTF C4 - T2, Laminectomies C5, C6 & C7. Severe Palsy left arm/hand.
  • Hi Lilcee,
    sorry you are having so much fibro pain. I use a noodle like Brenda suggested to help support my weight in the water and to do simple exercises in the pool. Our local dollar stores sell the styrofoam noodles for just that a dollar - what a bargain. Don't overdo it in the pool and make sure the water is warm. My doc said the water must be warm for fibro patients. Good luck and take care. I had been waiting all winter for summer thinking my pain would ease and then this week got hit with a flare up, oh well what is one to do. Better days ahead to all.

  • I've had a few rounds with water therapy. I was diagnosed with FMS over 15 years ago.

    I found that some places, even those that are specifically for therapy, don't keep the water warm enough. If the water's not warm, it's going to hurt worse :( I've never had the problem with the pressure of the water on my body, though. Is it your skin that hurts, or your chest? I've had some skin sensitivities, too, that's never fun. Hopefully you can find a way to get some good exercise, whether water, or otherwise. It helps, but it hurts to get started LOL!

    Good luck and hope everyone's having a pain light day!
  • The only thing that ever bothers my skin is the shower water - and that's only on severe days. I've never tried to get in a pool but I can't imagine it hurting! I'm so sorry! I know clothing bothers some people but it's never bothered me. We're all so different.

  • dilaurodilauro ConnecticutPosts: 9,837
    ask your doctor about.

    Water therapy normally is very good for any spinal condition. But there are so many different sets of water actions to consider.

    Swimming may not be something you can or should do.
    For cervical fused patients, swimming can be very difficult do to some side to side limitations.

    Walking in water, stretching water should always be ok.

    I've used the noodles others have post here both in therapeutic pools as well as in lakes, etc. Never had a problem.

    But play it safe, if it hurts to get in the water as you described, called your doctor. They may be able to tell you why.
    Ron DiLauro Spine-Health System Administrator
    I am not a medical professional. I comment on personal experiences
    You can email me at: rdilauro@veritashealth.com
  • Is the water in a heated therapy pool? I was going to a heated pool and hot tub after and my Physiotherapist showed me some exercises. It helped to have a belt float on to do exercises for me as my back is too strained to do exercises without that. A therapeutic pool is needed as well as you may want to discuss medications with your Dr. so you'll be able to tolerate pool therapy. Best wishes. Charry
    DDD of lumbar spine with sciatica to left hip,leg and foot. L4-L5 posterior disc bulge with prominent facets, L5-S1 prominent facets with a posterior osteocartilaginous bar. Mild bilateral foraminal narrowing c-spine c4-c7 RN
  • hiya lil
    sorry to hear you got fibro also...
    i got the greatest book from the library dont recall the author but it is swimming with fibromyalgia...
    shows you all the best exercises for water..
    I used to do laps not anymore but the heated pool i go to has great items...kick boards,noodles,water weights..
    if you can join a class..they have alot to offer at pool i go to..
    eveyone with fibro has diff things they can handle..so just go at your own pace..
    but check out your library...
    most pools have arthritus classes those are great..
    i wish you the best
    neck,bone spurs pain started 04, back issues and fusion l4,l5 06~hardware removed.
    good few yrs. 09 pain sharp, numbness feet,legs, diagnosed fibro, neurop. legs.lung issues.
    daily goal do good thing for someone.
  • I`ve always loved the water, it has always been my friend. Swimming came as natural as breathing. Anything having to do with the water was 2nd nature to me. So, after my last years problems with my back{which, really started 10 years ago},I couldn`t wait to start swimming again. Wow, when I did get in the water, surprise, the water felt great, but, my natural thing was gone. I regrouped my thinking, I got my noodle and kickboard,and started water exercising very slowly{ hopefully, the natural thing,will come}. What I`m trying to say is, for me, water is still my BF. I just have to remember, my spine is going to have to learn, take it easy, take my gift of the swimming, to a new place. Swimming, may still help me get back in shape. Just doing it slowly. I may still need another surgery, but, I`m determined to get this back of mine in better shape. Plus the water is like magic to my spirit,[and after these last few months} I want it back, and the water, maybe the key. The water, helps my mind clear and gaves me that natural good feeling. I just have to remember, take it easy, you`re not dealing with the same back, it`s got to learn to respect the gift!!! Maybe, this time next year, I`ll have gotten to a better place, stronger,happier mind, and anything that gets me ready for what I call my great adventure of life,I`ll be ready for anything that is thrown my way!!! TC, my precious spiney friends, Brenda Cannon
  • Howdy Brenda!! :)

    I too use to be a fish in the water. It was for a few minutes a downer when I found I could no longer swim in the traditional sense - couldn't turn to breath, so now I've adopted other modified strokes. My brain was once again happy!!!

    Frame of mind - YES!! The freedom, the major drop in pain levels, the physical break it gives me, that right there gives me my part time sanctuary, and as such a place I can go and enjoy! My hubby got me some more aqua tools - foamy dumb bells, aqua duck etc. I've been adding some of my own invented exercises - makes work outs into a game, and as such, more likely I will work my body as well as enjoy the pool. :)

    PCTF C4 - T2, Laminectomies C5, C6 & C7. Severe Palsy left arm/hand.
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