Back Surgery

How Much Should I Walk After Back Surgery?

Any surgical procedure can be tough on the body – but recovery is surely possible. Along with the right medical care and social support, getting back to physical exercise is also important. However, rushing into things can lead to complications and put unnecessary strain on the body. 

Back Surgery and Movement 

Back surgery can lead to mobility issues, as the lower half of the body may feel weak and painful. Since the back muscles are used in many exercises, strength training and cardio may be out of bounds. Doing such exercises may put the muscles under pressure; they are not ready to handle yet. 

At the same time, this does not mean that one should not exercise at all. Non-usage of muscles can hamper recovery and make it more difficult to gain back mobility. Thus, what one needs is a mild form of exercise that nevertheless hits the right spot, so to say. And the answer to this need is walking. 

Walk to Wellness 

Here is how walking can be used to ensure good recovery post back surgery – 

  • Listen to the Experts 

First and foremost, one must listen to the experts. Depending upon the surgery’s intensity, a physical therapist may develop a unique schedule that best serves a particular person. Feel free to clear doubts and ask questions about the recovery program, but make sure to stick to it as it is the best road to recovery.

  • Start Slow 

The physical trainer would likely develop an incremental schedule, which may start with a short, five to ten-minute walk, which gradually increases over time. Here, the critical detail is to know the difference between pushing oneself and fatiguing oneself. It is good to feel challenged, but not to the extent that you might not want to walk again for a while. 

  • Expect Setbacks 

Recovery from back surgery takes time. One day a twenty-minute walk might happen, but the next day only five minutes may be possible. This is completely okay. As the body adjusts and the muscles get stronger, these setbacks become few and far in between. In the meantime, one should listen to their body. 

  • Get Company 

Even the act of walking can become painful and uncomfortable post-surgery. To get one’s mind off these unpleasant sensations, it is a good idea to get some loved ones along. If no one is free, there is always the option to listen to some upbeat music or a good podcast. Be sure, however, to not do this beside a road!

  • Collect Feedback 

It is also a good idea to work with the physical trainer and gather data about progress. This can help us understand whether the current schedule works, what works best, and the schedule areas that can be changed. This feedback can also be a very motivational reminder that one is getting better. 

Getting back to normalcy after surgery can be hard, but that does not mean it is not achievable. With some patience and a little effort, one can get walking – and running – very soon.