The Best Types of Exercise After Back Surgery

Recovery from back surgery is a journey, and exercise plays a pivotal role in ensuring the best possible outcome. However, it’s crucial to choose the right types of exercises that promote healing and minimize the risk of further injury. 

breathing recovery

Here are some safe and effective exercises to consider post-back surgery:

  1. Walking: Walking is a low-impact aerobic exercise that aids in boosting blood circulation and improving stamina. Start with short, comfortable walks and gradually increase your distance as your stamina and strength return.
  2. Gentle Stretching: Gentle stretches can help in maintaining flexibility and range of motion. Always ensure your movements are slow and controlled. Some beneficial stretches include hamstring stretches, pelvic tilts, and knee-to-chest stretches. Consult your physical therapist for guidance on which stretches are best for you.
  3. Pelvic Floor and Core Strengthening: Core muscles support the spine and strengthening them is pivotal for post-operative recovery. Pilates and certain yoga poses can be especially beneficial, but be sure to consult a trained instructor who is aware of your surgical history.
  4. Stationary Cycling: Using a stationary bike allows you to control the intensity of the exercise and provides a non-weight bearing form of aerobic activity. It is a great way to get your heart rate up without straining your back.
  5. Aquatic Therapy: Water exercises can be highly beneficial after back surgery as the buoyancy of water reduces stress on the spine. Simple leg lifts, walking in the pool, or gentle swimming strokes can offer a therapeutic effect.
  6. Isometric Exercises: These exercises involve contracting a muscle without actually moving the joint. They’re good for maintaining muscle tone without putting much strain on the healing spine.
  7. Breathing Exercises: While not directly related to the back, deep breathing exercises can improve oxygen circulation, helping with tissue healing and providing relaxation, crucial for pain management.

Virginia Spine Specialists is an award-winning, minimally invasive spinal care practice with locations in Fredericksburg, VA and Manassas, VA. We also serve these Northern and Central Virginia locations: Haymarket, Gainesville, Culpepper, Front Royal, Spotsylvania, Stafford, Colonial Beach, Tappahannock and Lake Anna.