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Lumbar Arthritis, exercise????

AnonymousUserAAnonymousUser Posts: 49,550
edited 06/11/2012 - 7:32 AM in Exercise and Rehab
I was just diagnosed with osteoarthritis by my doctor. I do not know any details, the next available appointment with a specialist is not until the end of July. All I know is that it is some kind of facet arthritis, and I know that I am in a lot of pain and have been for several years.
I am quite active, and not overweight, although my body has changed a lot since having a baby 18 months ago. I would love some ideas for the best exercises to get rid of the stiffness. Swimming? Yoga? Are these good or bad? Usually activity makes my back feel better, and I run 20+ miles weekly.
I am a bit freaked out by the diagnosis, even more so since I will have to wait over 6 weeks to find out more. I'd like to get started on something for myself. If anyone has a similar condition, please let me know what has or has not worked for you.


  • I used to run also-had to give it up after my first spinal surgery.Every time we jog a step we are destroying the cartiledge in our joints and the discs in our back.I kept running after my first back surgery and had to have it redone with rods 20 years later-am taking better car of my back now.You sound still young so talk to a physical therapist or your doctor about high impact sports-Arthritis is just inflamation of a joint and loss of the spongy material.It happens to all with age,but jogging really speeds it up.Swimming,walking,bike,eliptical machine, yoga{I am going in a little bit} all help improve circulation and decrease pain of arthritis.Think about the the running-it is really hard to give up{and u probably won't} since I didn't until I had several rods in my spine. I just joined this site and we all seem to be the type of people that love high adrenalin sports and risk.I quess that is why we are here.Don't freak about the condition,just take care of your back-we only have one.I wish I had.
  • I have never been able to run, or jog. Walking is it.

    I have found that movement, any movement that does not hurt, will help. Arthritis seems to like having things kept in motion, at least that has been a formula for me.

    Yoga, pilates for fragile backs, or pick one that you are interested in and learn about it.

    It is all about learning from your own body, what it can take and then how to heal it, or decrease the damage.
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  • i'm in the same boat...i was just diagnosed! Am clueless on what to do! Also never ever sleep well! Imma watch to see what we can do!
  • Can you ask your doctor for a referral to PT? That way you can get specific advice on the best exercise for your condition.

    I used to think swimming was harmless for the back--hah! There is the potential for hyper extension & twisting that caused me a lot of trouble.

    I would think running/jogging are too much for damaged joints.

    Walking is pretty much great for everyone. My PCP doesn't like me doing treadmill, he thinks it's too bouncy for my unstable lower spine. He says eliptical would be better, but it's worse on my bad knee.

    Yoga is fantastic as long as you work with a good instructor.

    I've cooked up my own program of water jogging (with a jog belt & resistance gloves) & a noodle; water jumping jacks (seriously fun) & the stretches PT gave me.

    And walking, of course. I have yet to hear a doctor tell anyone not to walk unless they are right out of surgery. It's a great excerise. You can do that in a pool, too.

    Exercise is so important. I just read that 90% of the mobility lost due to arthritis is caused by not exercising.
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    Ron DiLauro, Spine-Health System Administrator 06/01/11
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