fbpx Post-surgery leg elevation pose causing lower back pain | Gokhale Method Institute
Sign up for our Positive Stance™ Newsletter

Post-surgery leg elevation pose causing lower back pain

lockwood.catherine's picture
Last seen:
3 years 2 weeks ago
12/02/2011 - 4:48pm
Post-surgery leg elevation pose causing lower back pain

Hi - I had a total knee replacement surgery 3-1/2 weeks ago. The 20-minute leg elevation 4 times a day is very important to recovery: The heart has to be lower than the legs and feet. 

The pose is causing me a lot of lower back pain which I haven't had for at least 20 years since I first studied with Esther. 

To achieve the elevation pose, I stack 3 standard bed pillows at the foot of the bed. Then in front of those, 2 pillows to support the mid-leg-knee area.   I then rest my straight legs on the pillows at the smooth angle upwards they make. Once I’m in the position, I pull one pillow from the two-pillow stack out a little toward me to support the upper  thighs. (Note: The knees are not supposed to be bent, but kept straight.)  I then stretch-lie my upper body down and place my head and shoulders under a 6th pillow. 

But the lower-back pain of this position is getting worse and persisting through my days and nights.  

Thank you from your fan, Catherine 

Last seen:
8 min 24 sec ago
11/03/2015 - 2:37am

Dear Catherine,

I'm sorry to hear you've got back pain on top of your post-operative pain! Let's see if we can help.

Without seeing a picture of your step up, my first hypothesis is that your hamstring muscles are pulling on your sitz bones when your leg is straight and tucking your pelvis a little and causing rounding in your lower back. Try doing some gentle hamstring stretches before a bout of leg elevation and see if that helps. If not, please report back :)

Warm wishes,

Gokhale Method Teacher, Canberra, Australia

Log in or register to post comments