Using an elliptical trainer as part of a pain relief plan

Although some people might be intimidated by exercise equipment, there are many benefits to using a machine such as an elliptical trainer, often referred to simply as an elliptical. An elliptical trainer is a machine that provides a low-impact, full-body aerobic workout. Many elliptical trainers can also track calories burned, miles per hour and heart rate. Most elliptical trainers also come with resistance settings, incline simulations and pre-programmed workouts.

Exercise is an important part of a successful treatment plan for the relief of neck or back pain related to a spine condition. By having a better understanding of the specific benefits, you can be more engaged with the care you receive and work more closely with your doctor to find lasting relief. At Laser Spine Institute we are committed to patient-centered education and care. You can contact our dedicated team to learn more about your condition and the treatment options available to you.

How can an elliptical trainer help people achieve relief from back pain?

An elliptical trainer is a stationary exercise machine that facilitates movement similar to walking or running. However, unlike a treadmill that is meant to simulate flat pavement, the elliptical has pedal-links — similar to bicycle pedals, only larger — that move with your feet and legs, rather than against their motion. Elliptical trainers also have handlebars that allow you to use your arm strength to regulate your speed, similar to cross-country skiing.

Aspects of the elliptical trainer that may specifically benefit the neck and back include:

  • Full-body motion. Because the elliptical motion demands upright posture combined with rigorous motion of the arms and legs, the core muscles of the back, abdomen, and buttocks are all strengthened, which can help relieve symptoms of degenerative spine disorders.
  • Low-impact design. The elliptical is a very low-impact machine, which means that the joints and discs of your spine do not have to absorb much shock. This can reduce pain caused by facet disease, arthritis of the spine, and bone spurs.

If you are dealing with neck or back pain caused by a spine condition, do not begin an exercise plan without first consulting your doctor. Never overexert yourself, and if neck or back pain is exacerbated during your workout, stop immediately.

When to consider surgery for the treatment of neck or back pain

A conservative treatment plan including exercise, medication, hot/cold therapy and other options helps many patients find lasting relief from neck or back pain, but these methods don’t work for everyone. Surgery can become an option if a full course of conservative options don’t bring looked-for relief.

Laser Spine Institute provides minimally invasive outpatient spine surgery as a safer and effective alternative to traditional open neck or back procedures.^ To learn more about the advantages of these procedures, contact us today.

You can ask a member of our dedicated team for your no-cost MRI review* to determine if you are a potential candidate for one of our procedures.