Strength and Conditioning for Leg Amputees Part 4 : Upper Body Difficulties

This is an area that I believe to be more problematic for congenital amputees than individuals that had their amputation due to an extreme trauma.

 

This area of the upper body will generally only cause you problems if you solely strengthen your chest and/or play wheelchair sports which are heavily dominant towards the muscles in the frontal plane (i.e. chest, triceps, quads and hip flexors). In the link, I talk about ways in which you can correct some of these problems. The diagram below shows the results are from being dominant in the chest, quads and hips results in the start of thoracic kyphosis.

 

lordosis treatment - kyphosis treatment

  • Lower back stiffness

To follow on from the blog on legs, having weak glutes (bum) muscles as an amputee is going to lead down a very slippery slope, causing tightness in the hips, overuse of the quads (thigh muscles), tightness of the lower back and excess belly fat and/or weak abdominal muscles. The worst case scenario this will cause an anterior tilt of the pelvis (backside protruding out more so than normal and stomach bulging) causing lumbar lordosis which is shown in the picture above. Another cause of lordosis is from trauma, the most common cause being whiplash to the cervical spine (the neck).

Quadratus Lomborum (QL muscles located in the lower back) tightness is caused by sitting unevenly and/or bad posture, sleeping on one side or hip hiking during walking which may be the case for some amputees.

 

*Do’s and don’ts when stretching the muscle tissue of the QL. It’s not a good idea to foam roller your lower back. Instead, use a yoga stretch called the pigeon to stretch not only the hips but also the lower back. You will stretch the other back by reaching to your opposite side to the leg that is in front and vice versa for the other side.

READ  Strength and Conditioning for Leg Amputees Part 5: Best 3 Cardio Tips

 

PS: If you found this article helpful and you would like me to write you a training programme suited to your needs. Get in touch.

Furthermore, while working on the Gym resource with Limb Power; I thought of some additional exercises to those already mentioned above.

These include among others:

Chest press (leg amputees with dumbbells, arm amputees with dumbbell and wrist or ankle weight used on impaired side, quad using wrist or ankle weight on both arms) or alternatively modified press ups.

Shoulder press or dumbbell raises (same as above)

Lat pull down (narrow and wide grips) or bodyweight exercises

Triceps (variation to suit impairment)

biceps (same as triceps)

lower back (back extensions, supermans)

Myofascial release (foam roller and/or tennis ball) – chest, upper back and shoulders

Mobility and flexibility: scapula retractions, halo, push press, rotator cuff work

These are just some recommendations.

PPS: If you want this article to appear in your inbox sign up below. Not forgetting to comply with the European Union implementing the new General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). In order to comply with this order, we’re required to verify and confirm your intent to receive our weekly newsletter and the special offers and discounts we occasionally mail out. You can find more information about this in the privacy notice.

Never Miss Another Post

11987159 1668418486727534 5320848096907599086 n

Sign up to start your week off right with our Monday emails featuring our weekly Fit Amputee powered by James Roberts Fitness blogs on fitness, nutrition and mindset.

Powered by ConvertKit

3 thoughts on “Strength and Conditioning for Leg Amputees Part 4 : Upper Body Difficulties”

  1. Hello,
    Pleasure to meet you, I thank you for taking time to visit my blog page and having a follow. I do hope it becomes of interest to you. I have enjoyed reading this particular blog post, it definitely served as a good read with good insight.

    Shay-lon

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.