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Thread: Swimming

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2007


    Hi, I had a fusion in August, I was formerly a competitive swimmer and I'm just starting to return to the pool. Can people who've had a spinal fusion still do flip turns and butterfly? I'm afraid to try.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2006

    My daughter didn't start competitive swimming until after her fusion. Jamie could not do the butterfly, but her fusion is up very high. She is fused from
    T3-L2. How long is your fusion? Jamie could not do the typical flip turn. However, I good friend of ours is also a swimmer and has a long fusion, but she can do flip turns.

    Good luck. Make sure you wait until you have the okay from your doctor to start swimming.

    Mary Lou
    Mom to Jamie age 21-diagnosed at age 12-spinal fusion 12/7/2004-fused from T3-L2; and Tracy age 19, mild Scoliosis-diagnosed at age 18.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Austin, TX
    I do flipturns just fine. Butterfly...not so much. I can do it, but it's akward and I don't think I could have ever competed in that stroke.
    Harrington Rods in 1991 at age 15
    Surgery at Scottish Rite in Dallas, TX

    Fused from T-4 to L-3

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Seattle, WA
    My son just joined his high school swim team. His butterfly stroke isn't the greatest but he can sort of do it. He seems to be able to do flip turns just fine. I'm glad it's a relatively non-competitive sport so he can swim at his own level.

    I bet you'll do well once you get used to the feeling of your new spine in the water.

    Have fun and good luck with all of it.

    Mother of Alexander & Zachary:
    Alex is 16 years old and in the 11th grade. He has congenital scoliosis due to a hemivertebrae at T10. Wore a TLSO brace for 3 1/2 years. Pre-op curves were T45 & L65; curves post-op are approx. T31 & L34. Had a posterior spinal fusion from T8 to L3 on 7/12/07 at age 12. Doing great now in so many ways, but still working on improving posture.
    Zach is 13 years old and very energetic.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2009


    I would be careful of bending (flipping) in the pool, esp since your fusion is still healing. I find that it's more comfortable to turn around rather than flip.

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