Posted on 20 Dec 2014

Herniated Disc Exercise Advice

Perhaps we are more familiar with the term slipped disc. However the disc does not slip but herniates. These are of course the discs that act as cushions between the spinal vertebras. A disc is made up of jelly like substance, nucleus, surrounded by tough outer shell, capsule. A healthy disc acts as a shock absorber, enabling the spine to be flexible. A herniated disc may not be the cause of the pain. A herniated disc may put pressure on a nerve root, such as the sciatic nerve, causing sciatica. During the herniation chemicals may be released causing inflammation. What can be done to elevate the condition and will exercise help.

Exercise Advice As we grow older the discs become less springy and can become injured more easily. The right type of exercise can support and strengthen the muscles in the spinal region and maintain flexibility as we age. Let’s start with the type of exercise not to do when you are suffering from a herniated disc. This is common sense, but avoid any intense cardiovascular exercises and heavy lifting. Yoga and Pilates are excellent for improving strength and flexibility, not only will these help to relieve the pain but can also help to prevent further injury. Loss of balance is a key problem as we age, however Tai Chi is an excellent regime to follow to overcome this. Low impact aerobic exercises are particularly beneficial following a herniated disc. This would include walking, biking, and swimming.

Whichever form of exercise or exercises you choose to aid your recovery ensure you start slow and build up as your strength and flexibility improves. Ten minutes may be all you can manage on the first day, but don’t be disheartened, aim to gradually increase the duration of exercise each day. Aim for a realistic goal of thirty minutes a day for five days of each week, you will be surprised how quickly that goal can be reached.


Health and Fitness Advice by FitFarms Editorial Team

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