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keep back from stiffening during tournament

jbtke399jjbtke399 Posts: 3
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:46 AM in Lower Back Pain
I'm 2 years removed from a L4-L5 discectomy and my back feels good as long as I stay on top of stretching and PT exercises. I play in a volleyball league where we play 3 matches per night. There's about 30 min between matches during which time my back stiffens up significantly and makes me very immobile. I've tried to keep stretching but to no avail. The only way I know that will ease the stiffness is to ice it...but then I need to loosen it back up again before I play.

I have a tournament coming up where I'll be playing 3-4 matches with about 30 min breaks in between each. Does anyone have any advice for me to help avoid my back stiffening during breaks?


  • Have you thought about using heat? I know in PT they use heat before you exercise to loosen the muscles. Then ice is used at the end to reduce swelling and tighten the muscles.
  • Thanks for the reply Kris, I have thought about using heat. The only problem is the logistics behind it. I'm playing in an outside tournament and I'm not sure what method I could use to apply heat.

    I'll look into if they make any kind of heating pad that works like those hand warmers they use for skiing
  • Yes, you can get instant disposable heating pads in any drug store. They work on chemical reactions rather than a heat source. I've used them, they work really well!
  • You can also get microwaveable gel packs; when we travel, I take several of them in a small lunchbox sized cooler, and can swap them around when one cools off. They hold their heat for hours, if they're kept insulated. Just be careful not to overheat them, or they WILL burst! Found that out the hard way!

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