Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 15 of 18

Thread: Strengthening the weak(collapsed) side of my scoliosis

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Posts
    78

    Strengthening the weak(collapsed) side of my scoliosis

    I have a prominent rib hump(52 degree thoracic) curve. This means that the other side of my body has my rib protruding forward and rotated as well. It looks abnormally thin from the profile and 3 quarter view compared to the stronger side. I am looking forward to possibly strenghthening the muscles of the collapsed side up to bring my chest out more, enlarging my side obliques and buffening my trapezius so that it will look thicker/more rounded and wouldn't look so thin and flat. Is this even possible to achieve? Has anyone tried this?

    However, i am having difficulty figuring out how i should only work out the weak side without having to work out the strong side. Most equipment in the gym just aren't designed for people to work out only one side. I tried it, and i eventually end up either working muscles on both sides of my body or not at all. I am also looking forward to do just the opposite on the stronger side, basically de-strenghthening it. Who do i see to setup this workout plan further? Is a fitness trainer good enough, or do i need to see a physical therapist?
    Last edited by Jinseeker; 06-28-2005 at 03:33 AM.
    29 yr old male with Structural Idiopathic scoliosis
    non-progressive
    37 degrees- upper thoracic ( w/ left shoulder trap higher, head tilted more to the right)
    45-52 degrees- mid thoracic (to the right, w/ rib hump)
    30 degrees- lumbar (to the left w/ lumbar hump)

    currently doing schroth exercises and counter postural techniques("side shifting") when both standing and sitting.
    still contemplative about surgery.

    >>My X-ray<<

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Posts
    51
    Jinseeker, if I was you I would speak to a physiotherapist. Have a look at some of the other threads on this board. There are some studies where specific types of weight training have helped. With a curve like yours, it would seem that a combination of weight training and botox injections into the stronger muscle to relax it would be best. But you'd have to speak to a specialist.

    The thing is, you have structural scoliosis, as indicated in your signature. What I've suggested above I can only see being affective for functional scoliosis where the vertebrae are normally shaped, but I could be wrong. Even if you work out, the condition may not change at all due to the shape of your spinal bones. But I'm not a doctor so I don't know this for sure.

    Does your curve cause discomfort or pain?

    I have a 20 degree curve and working out doing only specific lifting has allveviated some of the stress on my back but it's something I have to do all the time.

    I always thought that curves over 40 degrees were usually operated on???

    Either way, I'd speak to specialists so that you don't injure yourself or make the condition worse while trying to make it better.

    I hope that doctors are able to create custom synthetic portions of vertebrea for people like you to help align the back in the vertical position and have it stay there. Something perhaps you can ask doctors about or do searches on the internet.
    Last edited by Shaun26; 06-28-2005 at 08:02 AM.

  3. #3
    Mary Lou Guest
    Shaun,

    Not all curves over 40* are operated on. It is always the choice of the patient/parents even if their doctor has suggested surgery. If a person is skeletally mature, their curve is over 40-50*, there is no pain, or problems with their heart or lungs and their curve is not progressing, surgery isn't always necessary or even suggested.

    Mary Lou

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Posts
    1,140
    Here's an interesting article (actually an NSF newsletter !). It's in PDF format and you have to click on that manifying thingy at the top to read the article.

    http://www.scoliosis.org/resources/s...on_spr2002.pdf

    Celia

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Location
    Perth, Australia
    Posts
    64
    Hi Jinseeker!
    I would head for a physiotherapist hands down. I find that fitness instructors are pretty clueless when it comes to targetting specific muscles and so forth - their aim is usually just to get you generically strong and fit, consequences be damned!
    A physio would be able to tailor a set of exercises for your specific problem much, much better.
    Strengthening your traps is absolutely possible - I've been doing it for the last seven months with a set of pilates-style exercises given to me by my physio. I can't say I know whether you can focus solely on one side, as I have been strengthening both (I have kyphosis, rather than scoliosis, so both sides of my body are in need of strengthening), but that is likely something a physio could answer for you. I'd say it's possible in principle though. I can picture a whole lot of single-handed push ups! Ouch!

    Ta,
    Martin

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Posts
    78
    Shaun ,
    Fortunately, I've never had any back pain all my life even with a severe scoliosis like mine. I don't expect my spine's curvature to get any better because there has been no proven way to do it yet. I am however, only exercising so i can maintain my curve and keep healthy. The weak half of my body is just extremely thin due to flattened out muscles(I can hardly see my trapezius from the side view even if i hunch my back)and i still would like to know if it is possible to develop and build these muscles up so that my weak side would look thicker and not so thin.

    You said:
    "I hope that doctors are able to create custom synthetic portions of vertebrea for people like you to help align the back in the vertical position and have it stay there. Something perhaps you can ask doctors about or do searches on the internet."

    i still don't get what you mean about custom syntetic portions. Do you mean surgery? I certainly decided not to since my curve is not progressive and i am in good health and not in any pain. I also don't know what kind of a physiotherapist i should see so i can have botox injections to relax the tight muscles. Are physiotherapists and physical therapsits the same?
    Last edited by Jinseeker; 06-29-2005 at 04:52 AM.
    29 yr old male with Structural Idiopathic scoliosis
    non-progressive
    37 degrees- upper thoracic ( w/ left shoulder trap higher, head tilted more to the right)
    45-52 degrees- mid thoracic (to the right, w/ rib hump)
    30 degrees- lumbar (to the left w/ lumbar hump)

    currently doing schroth exercises and counter postural techniques("side shifting") when both standing and sitting.
    still contemplative about surgery.

    >>My X-ray<<

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Posts
    51
    I'm happy to hear you don't have pain or discomfort. That's incredible.

    You would be better to consult some type of scoliosis specialist, therapist, and the like.

    What you don't want to do is start meddling with your back for aesthetic purposes and wind up putting additional pressure on spinal nerves and wind up with everlasting discomfort or pain.

    The only people in a position to go over this with you is somebody in the medical field and who can get up close and personal with your spine.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Posts
    1,140
    Quote Originally Posted by Jinseeker
    I also don't know what kind of a physiotherapist i should see so i can have botox injections to relax the tight muscles. Are physiotherapists and physical therapsits the same?
    Jinseeker/Shaun,

    I can see the logic behind strengthening the weak side of the curve -however from a hypothetical stand point - getting botox injections to weaken the convex side of the curve could possibly have undesirable results, the most important being - the curve could increase further. I also don't think they are administering these drugs to anyone other than patients with neuromuscular scoliosis AND as an adjunct to bracing. Another major concern would be an unqualified practitioner administering the drug and inadvertently injecting the spinal cord with botox. *cringing*



    Celia

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Location
    Manitoba, Canada
    Posts
    73

    Unhappy Ouch!



    Aww now that thought is going to be stuck in my mind all day
    Age 28
    diagnosed at age 12
    wore a boston brace until age 14
    No surgery, was on "wait and watch" till recently. Got a SpineCor (Jan 27th) to help ease the pain.
    T-curve 73 degrees with severe rotation (curves to the right)
    L-curve 45 degrees with slightly less severe rotation than my T-curve (curves to the left)

    1994 - 5'10" - T-?/L-? (i forget what they really were)
    2006 - 5' 4" - T-56/L-40
    2008/09 - 5' 4" - T-73/L-45

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Posts
    78
    I heard a lot of good stuff about physiotherapy. But are physiotherapists and physical therapists the same?

    Thank you for all the advice.
    29 yr old male with Structural Idiopathic scoliosis
    non-progressive
    37 degrees- upper thoracic ( w/ left shoulder trap higher, head tilted more to the right)
    45-52 degrees- mid thoracic (to the right, w/ rib hump)
    30 degrees- lumbar (to the left w/ lumbar hump)

    currently doing schroth exercises and counter postural techniques("side shifting") when both standing and sitting.
    still contemplative about surgery.

    >>My X-ray<<

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Posts
    3

    Physio/Physical Therapist

    Jinseeker,

    They are the same thing. In almost all cases, you will have to get referred to a physical therapist by your doctor. This is probably the best idea, anyway! You don't want to try to correct something yourself or go to someone untrained and then end up making the problem worse. You know how they always say you should never start a new fitness routine without consulting your doctor? It's true, especially if you have an underlying problem like scoliosis. It's fantastic that you don't have any associated pain - you don't want to try to correct something cosmetic and end up in pain! I have a relatively minor curvature, but I know that certain kinds of exercise, including a lot of the standard strengthening exercises that personal trainers will give you, will cause me a lot of pain and stiffness if I do them regularly. Even if a physical therapist isn't able to correct the appearance issues, they will give you the foundation for healthy exercise, and help you decide what kind of a fitness routine is right for you, so that you can correct those things down the road without making sacrifices.

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Posts
    78
    Thanks for the responses, i will definitely do that. If you are wondering why i don't have any pain or discomfort is maybe because i am still young. I must admit i did have pain but it happened very rarely and would be gone in a couple of hours or the next day. Usually it would be some sort of chest pain or pain from the weak collapsed side of my back. Perhaps i may start experiencing more constant pain as i get older, that's why it is so important to start monitoring it and taking on maintenance measures like going to the chiropractor once a month.
    Last edited by Jinseeker; 07-12-2005 at 07:31 AM.
    29 yr old male with Structural Idiopathic scoliosis
    non-progressive
    37 degrees- upper thoracic ( w/ left shoulder trap higher, head tilted more to the right)
    45-52 degrees- mid thoracic (to the right, w/ rib hump)
    30 degrees- lumbar (to the left w/ lumbar hump)

    currently doing schroth exercises and counter postural techniques("side shifting") when both standing and sitting.
    still contemplative about surgery.

    >>My X-ray<<

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Posts
    92

    Regarding pain

    I definitely understand you not having pain. Mine did not bother me either in my 20's, 30's. I kept very active with swimming, hiking, chasing children, working full-time etc.
    It was not until my 40's that it caught up with me.
    CSC
    Idiopathic Scoliosis; Wore a Milwaukee brace; Told by physician it would not progress
    S curve; Surgery date: January 29, 2008!!

  14. #14
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Posts
    12

    weak side exercises

    I have a set of exercises designed to exercise the structurally weak side or the ones with the mechanical DIS advantage along the spine. I will try and get them scanned into the computer and I can email them to you, just send me an email address.

    The only hazard to using these exercises is if you dont know your curves(but it seems you do from your sig) you can cause harm by strengthening the wrong curves...

  15. #15
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Posts
    672
    CSC,

    Your story sounds similar to mine. Milwaukee braced as adolescent. Surgery was recommended after 4/5 years of bracing but I declined. Felt fine and active through 20's & 30's, had 3 children and now in early forties am having increased lower back, right hip pain (especially during menstruation), right shoulder and neck aches. Yoga helps some, but hard to get into regular, everyday routine. What exactly is "degenerative" scoliosis? What will be done during your surgery, and what does your doctor say about recovery?

    FlowerPower

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •