A Disc Herniation And What Not To Do As A Horse Rider

Do You Have A Disc Hernia In Your Lower Back?

Is Back Pain Affecting Your Riding?

Have You Been Told To Give Up Riding?

Doctors and medical professionals will always err on the conservative side and the uninformed will always view horse riding as a high-risk sport, especially with a back injury.

leanne liftingWell, I have written extensively on this topic, I have suffered a  disc prolapse myself and was told to never ride a horse again. I was also given many stretches by my treating therapist that increased my pain and pressure on my spinal nerves.

Many horse riders suffer from a lower back injury of some description. The disc is the most common structure injured. The advice and rehab programs that are given to many horse riders do not come from a therapist who knows about horse riding. This is devastating for those who are told to give it away. Time to heal is very important and understanding the biomechanics of the injury and movement patterns used in riding is essential. If you want more information in this area then look at my Applied Posture Riding program. However, having written about what to do to recover I have listed here a group of exercises NOT to do.

Stretches To Avoid With A  Disc Hernia Injury.

The point is you avoid any stretch or exercises that push the lower spine into flexion.

Lumbar flexion will increase the pressure through the disc and cause it to bulge or herniate further into the spinal structures.

This increases the risk of a full-blown prolapse.

All the Images below have been sourced from The book "The Anatomy Of Stretching " by Brad Walker 2nd Edition. (B Walker 2007. The Anatomy Of Stretching. 2nd ed. Berkely, Lotus Publishing.138,129,  

stretch 19Never stretch toward the floor with a disc injury. Sitting increases the pressure through the discs. Stretching your head towards your knees puts enormous pressure on the disc. Stretches that increase the disc pressure are very dangerous, especially in the early stages of recovery. All stretches for a disc hernia must be carefully set up and the patient must know what structure they are stretching and at what level do you push it. No pain No gain is only good if you know what the pain is.

Once you have looked at all these stretches you will realise you are actually increasing your injury. Be safe learn about your injury and return to riding with good healing, good strength and confident you are recovering well.

 Avoid the following stretches if you have a Disc Hernia. Certain stretches may well be increasing the injury or increasing the nerve damage...be aware!  

stretch 38Twisting and Sitting is extremely stressful on your disc. Avoid this stretch.stretch 25

All stretches for a disc hernia must be carefully set up and the patient must know what structure they are stretching and how much pain can be induced. No pain, No gain is only good if you know what the pain is. Once you have looked at all these stretches you will realise you are actually increasing your injury. Be safe learn about your injury and return to riding with good healing, good strength and confident you are recovering well.   Twisting and Sitting is extremely stressful on your disc. 

Avoid these stretches in the early stages. If you want more information on how to manage disc pain so you can return to riding, feel free to contact me.

Stretches that decrease the disc pressure need to be done in lying or in a pool.

Back bending is a great stretch if done correctly.

If you want more information, contact me and if you wish to purchase my Applied Posture Riding Program go to the shop on the menu tab.