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Bending from waist

Justin66JJustin66 Posts: 95
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:44 AM in Exercise and Rehab
When I had surgery I vowed to try not to bend from my waist again for fear of reherniating my disc. If I drop something which seems to be every 5 minutes now that I have back problems, I get down on one knee to pick it up.

I was thinking I could be causing more harm by letting my back muscles weaken by not using them as much. I do what I call Superman exercises where I lay on my stomach and raise one arm and the opposite leg for my back at least every other day.

What are your thoughts on bending from your waist? Sometimes its just to painfull for me to bend so it scares me to try it regularly.


  • dilaurodilauro ConnecticutPosts: 9,863
    1- Are these 'superman' exercises something that your doctor knows about and approves?

    2- We, the human race have a great way of abusing our backs. To pick up anything on the ground, bend at the knees. Do I do it 100% of the time, I wish I could say yes. But it is so important to keep in mind all the body mechanics after having spinal problems.
    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
  • Well my Dr. sent me to therapy but never asked what I was doing while I was there. My therapist came up with the exercise. I have been out of therapy for 7 months and im not down yet but who know if its what I should be doing.

    This is one of the exercises I have been doing.

  • Justin,
    I for one would not bend from the waist and that knee bending approach will help, doing the right exercise is better than doing nothing or the wrong ones. Our spines now are not designed to be lifting our upper torso and for the most part I use an aid to pick things from the floor to protect my future capacity.

    Nothing is that important that I need to bend down and pick it up, at the supermarket some years ago I dropped an apple on the floor, and kicked it under rather than bend down, a nice lady could see I was having trouble and came and picked it up for me.

    Take care and good luck.


  • It's hard and I really have to make an effort to not bend at the waist and to use proper body machanics. It's not easy with 3 kids but bending at the knees is my best friend!! You definately want to establish your core..don't know about doing the Superman with back issues...I personally couldn't do it.
  • is taught in PT during recovery from lumbar surgery. At least at the PT place I used. There are several variations of it. The aim is core strength and balance. It comes from Pilates.

    There is also the McKenzie method "press-ups" that cause extension beyond that. They look like lazy push ups but cause a lot of extension.

    You can do it laying down just be careful about the amount of extension. If you had lumbar surgery and/or have hardware. Screws and rods locking lower levels of the spine do not like extension. You end up shoving the rods around into your bones if you are not careful.

    You can do this exercise if permitted to help with core and balance. You can also do it while in a dog position. Keeping spine neutral. Extend one leg and opposite arm. Pull your belly up and spine neutral. Your back is not supposed to rock like a boat. It is supposed to stay flat.

    Then to take it to the next level you get an exercise ball and get back in the dog position over the ball. Now when you extend you have to have a stable core to stop from slipping off the ball.

    Very good exercise set IF you are permitted to be doing core work.


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