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Yoga after lumbar fusion L4,5 and S1

I had spinal fusion surgery with implants of rods and 6 screws and also a disk replacement, 4 years ago of L4, 5 and S1 to treat spondylolithesis. Since the surgery I've had ongoing chronic pain and was diagnosed with M.E and Fibromyalgia a year later which I believe was triggered by the surgery. I also have Joint Hypermobility syndrome, Osteoporosis and Osteoarthritis. I've just turned 40.

I was wondering if anyone on the forum has done yoga after a level 4-S1 surgery and if so what they find their limitations are?

I recently started practicing gentle yoga (which I'm completely new to, I'd never done it before surgery) and I'm finding a lot of poses very difficult - particularly seated forward bends, bridge poses (for some reason I find it really hard to lift my pelvis off the ground) and forward bends are all difficult - and so much of yoga involves forward bending. At the moment sun salutations are out of the question as every part of that process hurts. However I've found Scaravelli yoga classes more helpful (and they have no sun salutations in them!)

I've been discharged from the neurosurgery team but previously they agreed gentle yoga might be helpful - my GP just tells me do what you want - so in terms of medical restrictions there aren't any that I've been advised of.

I'd love to hear about others experiences of yoga and if its helped to manage chronic pain and also whether after time you gained increased flexibility and mobility for poses?

Thank you



  • I had a yoga practice for many years, until my back became too painful to participate in classes. I've had a 5 level lumbar fusion almost 6 months ago, and do stretches and movement at home on my own. I'd like to return to classes, but not sure when. 

    Gentle yoga is great, but it's important to have a supportive & skilled teacher. 

    My 2 cents: 

    DON'T try and "keep up" or do poses that everyone else is doing if your body isn't able. Very important to let your body be the guide.

    Hope that's helpful..

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