Spondylolisthesis and the Back Block

by Jane


I have been diagnosed with spondylolisthesis. I have read your case study of Georgie in the Back Sufferer's Bible (Segmental Instability) and note you do not mention the Back Block in her exercise regime. I have also noticed a disconcerting click/slip-like adjustment when I first settle onto the Back Block myself.

Should I be using it? If not, what other exercise might I do in its place?

Thank you in anticipation.

Comments for Spondylolisthesis and the Back Block

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Feb 11, 2013
about spondylolisthesis
by: Sarah Key

Hello Jane,
It is very unlikely that the odd clonk and click that you feel on relaxing on the BackBlock is your spondylolisthesis moving. You would have to be highly unstable for that and a be suffering quite a degree of lower back discomfort. However, all spondylolistheses should make a deliberate effort to beef up the strength of the 'holding' small muscles 'multifidus' to be on the safe side. The most effective ways to do this are the three stages of strengthening as shown in Chapter 7 of the book The Back Sufferers' Bible, although the exercise off the end of the table is very demanding and requires help to hold your legs. This exercise can also make you quite sore. Probably the most effective, quickly, is forward bending and unfurling back to vertical a couple of times, twice a day only.
Back to the BackBlock. The passive hyper-extension of the BB position reduces any tendency to forward slip of the segment and as such is ideal.
All my patients with this syndrome use the backBlock. But before going any further, it may be worthwhile to upload an image of your scans showing the spondylolisthesis level to let me have a look. You will have to do this as a new post. It would also be a good idea to include some of the radiology report for me to read also.

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