It can be absolutely crushing when your health prevents you from doing the things you love. Here at the Scoliosis SOS Clinic, we frequently treat people who have found themselves in that demoralising position, and we've met a number of people whose passion is bowls (also known as lawn bowls).
Bowls is a very social sport, and when the symptoms of scoliosis - primarily back pain - threaten to stop you playing, it's easy to feel like you're losing friends as well as your favourite pastime.
Fortunately, it doesn't have to be that way. Here are the stories of two people who came to the Scoliosis SOS Clinic and, with the help of our ScolioGold treatment programme, overcame their pain to get back on the green.
from Barnet, North London
"When playing bowls, you often get slightly sore on one side, but the pain I was experiencing was entirely different - and much more painful - than anything I'd experienced before. I genuinely thought I was going to have to give up my bowls, and for me that would have been devastating. So I am delighted with the outcome of my treatment."
Read Dora's Story >>
from Coventry, West Midlands
"Living life as 'Gloria with scoliosis' has not been easy, and I was devastated when I had to give up playing bowls. But the Scoliosis SOS consultants have been great - I have been able to start playing again, and have made a great new group of friends from the clinic."
Read Gloria's Story >>
If your scoliosis is threatening to keep you from doing what you love, Scoliosis SOS may be able to help you. Call our clinic on 0207 488 4428 or use the links below to find out more.
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The 2019 Wimbledon Championships are in full swing right now, and even if you're not usually interested in tennis, it's hard not to get swept up in all the excitement and prestige. This year's tournament has already made headlines - the first round saw 15-year-old Grand Slam newcomer Cori Gauff defeat five-time champ Venus Williams - and there are no doubt plenty of thrills still to come.
Here at the Scoliosis SOS Clinic, we've treated a number of avid tennis players whose curved spines were threatening to force them off the court for good. Here are some of their stories:
"Scoliosis completely rocked my world...I really felt like my world had fallen apart, and I didn't know how to cope with all the emotions that were going around in my head. I cannot wait to get back to the specialists at the hospital and show them what I have achieved."
Read Abigail's Story >>
"I was amazed by what I had achieved in a relatively short time. To see the improvements that I had made from before and after the course was unbelievable. I am no longer dreading the possibility of surgery and I can concentrate on my tennis again."
Read Louise's Story >>
"When my parents told me about the treatment, I was ecstatic. I love sports, so doing exercises to keep my back in good condition and to avoid surgery was not a problem. I'm looking forward to the summer as I missed out on so many tennis games last year."
Read James's Story >>
"The staff at the clinic were amazing, they made me feel normal again. I cannot wait to get back to playing tennis. I am also so excited about life again."
Read Rebecca's Story >>
"When I was told that I had scoliosis, I didn't really understand to start with. No one ever sat me down and explained what was going on until I got to the Scoliosis SOS Clinic."
Read Sarah's Story >>
"After completing the therapy, my life completely changed. My back looks a million times better, and I feel stronger."
Read Stephanie's Story >>
The Scoliosis SOS Clinic is a non-surgical scoliosis treatment centre in London, UK. Learn about our treatment methods here, or please get in touch if you'd like to arrange a consultation.
Weightlifting has the potential to be quite a damaging pastime for people with scoliosis, but it can also be beneficial in the correct circumstances. If approached carefully, weight-based exercise may help to improve muscle balance and reduce the visibility of one's spinal curvature.
In this blog post, we'll discuss a few things to bear in mind if you have scoliosis and you plan to start lifting weights.
Weightlifting might be painful - don't push yourself too hard!
Would-be weightlifters with scoliosis need to be mindful of their condition at all times. Start with small weights and simple exercises to gauge what's comfortable and what isn't. Work with a comfortable weight for the first few weeks, and then step up your weight a little bit and see how you feel.
Don't do anything that causes you pain - you should avoid certain back-focused exercises like deadlifts, squats or lunges unless you are certain you can handle them. Bending and straightening your back while carrying weight is likely to cause injury. Speak to your GP to discuss what weightlifting exercises are appropriate for your condition; you could also enlist the help of a personal trainer to guide you while you're lifting.
Focus on exercises that stretch your back muscles instead of compressing them.
Here are some weightlifting exercises you may wish to try if you have scoliosis:
- Pull-down cable exercises
- Seated exercises
Stretching and strengthening the muscles on the concave side of your spinal curve can gradually help to improve mobility and reduce pain. That's because the muscles on the convex side usually do most of the work for you back - these are muscles that have been trying to keep your back upright since you developed scoliosis.
The concave muscles, however, are often shorter and atrophied (weaker), so working on these muscles can help to correct your scoliosis curve.
How can Scoliosis SOS help?
If you have scoliosis and you're interested in pursuing weightlifting or another physically-demanding leisure activity, we recommend coming to our clinic for a consultation to establish how severe your condition is. Our consultants will be able to offer advice about the best types of exercise for you and what you can work towards in the future.
Our 4-week ScolioGold treatment courses are ideal if you want to work towards being able to lift weights (or to carry on weightlifting, if this was a hobby you enjoyed before you were diagnosed). Click the button below to get in touch and book your initial consultation.
Contact Scoliosis SOS >
The Grand National horse race is fast approaching, and this always raises a lot of questions for our scoliosis patients who are keen riders.
Horse riding is a very enjoyable hobby, and one that many ScolioGold patients are very passionate about. However, it can cause problems due to the high impact placed on the rider's lower spine.
Can I still ride a horse if I have scoliosis?
The advice we give to all of our patients is that they never have to give up on the things they are passionate about. The simple answer is to ensure that you exercise properly in order to maintain a strong core. This should give you the ability to support the spine in a balanced symmetric position.
We also recommend that our patients pay attention to their hip position and keep an even weight across their pelvis. This can be a challenge for scoliosis patients, who often have one hip higher than the other (which causes uneven weight distribution). However, this can be corrected through specific ScolioGold exercises and strengthening the muscles surrounding the spine.
Did you know?
Horse riding is actually recommended by many health professionals, as it can encourage good posture and promote a strong core when done correctly.
People we've helped
We have treated lots of horse riders with scoliosis. One of them - Rosie from Twickenham - was featured in her local newspaper (see clipping above) after we helped her to overcome the pain and discomfort that was threatening to put her out of the saddle for good.
Another keen rider, Madhav, travelled to London from Kolkata to undergo treatment at our clinic. Watch the video below to hear his story.
If you have any further questions about scoliosis and how it may affect your ability to ride, please contact Scoliosis SOS today and we will be able to offer you help and advice, either in person or over the phone (our number is 0207 488 4428).
Many of our patients come to the Scoliosis SOS Clinic with the fear that their condition will prevent them from taking part in their favourite activities. However, while scoliosis may change the way you approach certain activities, it shouldn't stop you from doing the things that you enjoy.
If you're a sports-loving scoliosis sufferer, you'll be pleased to know that there are plenty of athletes with scoliosis, and they certainly haven't let the condition hold them back. Here are just a couple of well-known athletes who will inspire you to keep loving your sport even after a scoliosis diagnosis!
The fastest man on earth. You might be surprised to see Usain Bolt's name on this list, but the Olympic medal-winning world record holder does indeed have a curved spine. Bolt claims that, by training hard and keeping his core and back strong, he was able to overcome the problems scoliosis caused early on in his career. Despite being more prone to injuries, Bolt has learned how to manage his condition and achieve unparalleled success in his field.
The winner of no fewer than 6 Olympic medals at the 2008 Beijing Olympics, Coughlin also attributes the management of her condition to working hard at her sport. She has spoken about how her scoliosis has sometimes caused her back muscles to lock up, but by keeping her muscles healthy, Coughlin ensures that her 27-degree spinal curve doesn't hold her back from being a very successful competitive swimmer.
We've treated lots of athletes here at Scoliosis SOS - in fact, we did a whole blog post about our sporty success stories! We understand what it means to have a love of sport, and this is why we strive to help patients manage and improve their condition. Our ScolioGold therapy programme has been very effective at tackling the symptoms of scoliosis, which means that patients are generally free to continue pursuing the sports they love.
Of course, there are some sports that aren't recommended for those suffering with scoliosis, although exceptions can and have been made for those with a passion for said sports. That being said, here is a quick list of the sports that aren't typically recommended for scoliosis patients:
- Weight lifting
- Impact sports (e.g. American football, rugby, hockey)
- Hard landing sports (e.g. cheerleading, gymnastics)
- One-sided sports (e.g. skiing, golf)
To find out more about which sports should typically be avoided and why, read our blog post Scoliosis: Sports to Avoid.
If you have any questions about how our non-surgical treatment courses can help with your scoliosis, we are more than happy to help - please contact us today.