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11-22-2010, 03:52 AM
  #2
Niedzwiedz
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Join Date: Nov 2010
Location: IL
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I'd be interested on hearing some responses to your questions too, and a little more on how your recovery process went. How long did it take you to heal enough to skate and play full speed again? Did your doctor restrict you from skating altogether, or only from playing hockey? Was it a hockey related injury or something else?

I recently started experiencing some pretty severe sciatica and found out its being caused by a herniated disc in my lumbar-sacral area. I'm 40, and it seems to have been just slow degeneration, partially age related and somewhat connected to an old L1 compression fracture.

I'm a beginner in ice hockey. Started skating for the first time two years ago. Started doing a bit of basic stick and puck work this summer, and was supposed to start in a learn to play hockey program Saturday. The first doc I talked to said no hockey, but that I could still skate as long as I didn't push it and stopped when it hurt.

When I do get to hockey, it will be low-speed, non-check beginners stuff. Right now, even being able to skate is hit and miss, depending on how bad the pain is. Sometimes even the meds don't cut it enough for me to get on the ice and accomplish anything. Physical therapy is scheduled to start next week, and I'm hoping it helps.

What kind of preparation do you do when you're getting ready to play? I've found that a slow, thorough warm-up is very helpful before skating. The 30-40 min drive to the rink always locks up my back, so I absolutely need time to loosen up. I walk around for 20-30 minutes, and then stretch, focusing on my lower back while lying down on a bench. Wearing a light back brace also seems to help me, both for the support and for keeping the area warm. More stretching as soon as I get off of the ice and when I get home finishes off any ice time.

I've also been told that I need to make some changes in my every day routine - ie exercise/strengthening the core, eating habits/losing weight. Sleeping with a pillow between my knees often helps the pain, and maintaining correct posture, especially while sitting also has a positive effect.

You may need to consult a doctor, since you're having more problems with it than usual. It may be a sign of worse to come if its pushed too far. The last thing you need to do is completely blow it out again.

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