SF Bay Area Decompression Center- I am often asked if it is a good idea to lift weights with a herniated disc in the low back. The truth of the matter is, there is no right answer. It just depends on the individual circumstances. Just because you have a disc herniation does not mean you can't ever workout again. In fact, often times working out with weights under the supervision of a physical therapist or trainer is exactly what you want to do after the inflammation subsides. Chiropractic adjustments can be quite helpful as well during this rehabilitation phase, as is deep tissue massage.
Now, if you have chronic low back pain that does not respond to conservative care it may be a different story. In fact, in really bad cases exercise may make you worse, especially weightlifting. This is where your doctor comes into play. If you are working with an orthopedic doctor or a chiropractor that treats a lot of herniated disc patients (and weightlifters) then you will probably get some good advice. The last thing you want to do is make the problem worse. And just so you know...It's OK to get sore when you start your rehab. In fact, this is normal. Just use a lot of ice and make sure you do exactly what your doctor says.
If it turns out that you are unable to exercise because it is too painful, and you do not respond to physical therapy or chiropractic, you may be a candidate for nonsurgical spinal decompression. Decompression therapy was actually created to fill this void. It's something to seriously consider if you don't want surgery.
If you live in the San Francisco Bay Area and have been diagnosed with a herniated disc, you may be a candidate for care at our Financial District Decompression Center. For a Complimentary Consultation please call 415-392-2225. We can talk by phone or in person.