Just Keep Swimming

For the record, I hate swimming.  But, I hate my disc protrusion more…….

Swimming and hydrotherapy exercises are good for my disc protrusion injury and recovery.

I have joined up as an Aquatics Member at my local swimming pool complex.

I have very fond memories of taking my daughters to this pool when they were younger.  I’m not sure if you can see in the background of the video but directly behind me is an aqua play ground, with squirty things, a water slide and an enormous bucket on the top that regularly empties and dumps on the kids who are running around.

I am very tempted to join in, but because of my disc protrusion injury it’s probably not a good idea.

That, as well as the fact that I’m an adult male without any small children of my own with me…. not a good look.

So, for the record, I have started my swimming and hyrotherapy regime with:

Swim – 24 laps x 25 metres = 600 metres = 600 yards.

Foam Dumb Bells:

  • Bicep Curls – 3 x 10 reps
  • Side Arm Extensions – 3 x 10 reps
  • Forward Arm Raises – 3 x 10 reps


  • 3 x 20 pushes forwards/backwards
  • 3 x 10 pushes up/down

This takes me about 30 minutes, after which time I’m exhausted.

However, a wise fish once said.

When life gets you down do you wanna know what you’ve gotta do ?

Just keep swimming.

Life is unfortuantely getting me down, so I will take this fish’s advice and see where it leads me.

And my physio said the same thing as the fish, so it’s probably true.

A disc protrusion is where a small section of the gristly bit between the vertebrae in someones back – for example, mine – is squashed out in a bubble.  Mine is about 1cm x 1.2cm , which, as far as I understand, is not what you want poking out of your lower back.

So, in normal day to day life, such as walking, sitting, standing, bending over to tie your shoelaces, leaning over the basin while brushing your teeth so that you don’t get toothpaste all over your chest, a disc protrusion becomes an unpleasant liability.

It restricts movement and hurts.  A Lot.

So, while my brain (and various doctors and phyiotherapists and fish) is telling me to keep moving, my body is strongly recommending to just lie down on the floor.

The theory is, therefore, that swimming is a really good idea.

Swimming takes the pressure off the disc protrusion injury and thus relieves some of the pain and swelling and inflamation.

Swimming provides the body with exercise, which in turn helps it to heal.  Exercise also helps with the unhappiness and frustration coursing through my veins too.  So, it’s a bit of a win-win.

There are only two main downsides with swimming exercises in the public pool.

  1.  The smell of chlorine becomes an ever present reminder that the answer to the question, “are we having fun yet ?” is usually a big, fat, hairy “No, not yet”.
  2.  Speaking of big, fat and hairy, doing my laps and hydrotherapy exercises in the public pool means sharing water space with a surprisingly large number of very unfit and extremely old ladies pretending to do aqua-aerobics.

I actually joined in one of these aqua-aerobics classes a few weeks ago.  I was the only male surrounded by a large number of large women and I lowered the average age of the participants by about 50 years.

If it was anyone else, it would have been really funny.  But it was me, and it wasn’t.

(actually, in retrospect, it was a little bit amusing).

So, I will continue to swim and continue to do my water exercises.

Please feel free to let me know any other simple and gentle water exercises that might help my lower back disc protrusion in the comments below 🙂