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When I had a torn bursa in my shoulder I made myself "walk the wall".  Stand close, put the hand of your sore arm on the wall & make it walk up a little at a time.  This was boring but did work.  Also found u have to get up every now and then and stretch.  Try little exercises & if not working, you should get a doctor's opinion.

Good luck & healthy wishes.

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Hi, Alice.

I have trouble, too, with my shoulders when I quilt.  What has helped me most is a "thermabead" hot back that I heat in the microwave and place over my shoulders . I ordered it from one of the quilting sites on-line, but I don't remember which one.  I am also doing shoulder rotations several times a day.  I hope you find something that wil work for you, too!  Happy Quilting!

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I have read all  of the replies, and they're very good.  Include foot paddles along with your ankle exercises, and pay attention to your chair position.  You don't really need a footstool  if you exercise your feet frequetly.  I fly to London a lot to visit my daughter, and I litterally paddle all the way there including ankle exercises, but mostly foot paddles.  I never arrive with swollen ankles that way., and from the west coast that's a very long flight!  Good luck, Dagny 

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Alice,

After finding a good chair, I realized that I was still leaning forward when sewing. I purchased a "Body Rite Posture Pleaser" from www.Home Sew.com

It works well for me.

Helen

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Rhonnie replied on Tue, Jul 7 2009 3:53 PM

Great post Alice.....I wondered about that at times.

I now have the perfect excuse to get that exercise program for the Wii. I had looked at it many times but didn't know what people thought of it. I am glad it does what it says it will do.

I also do the as my kids call it moms sewing music.....I put on the more energetic music when I am up moving pressing. cutting or whatever. It puts a pounce in my step and you can't help but dance a lil bit even if your like me and have 2 left feet. But there is nooo one in your studio to laugh at you but yourself and thats good for ya too.

I'm a material girl....Want to see my fabric collection?

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Tammy replied on Tue, Jul 7 2009 9:03 PM

Sqweak (Alice)

I agree with Spud that you need a good chair and need to get up and move once in a while.  I have the unfortunate pleasure of having a bulging disk in my lower back and if I sit to long my hip and leg will go a little numb. Yes I need to have it fixed but until I get the courage I'll make due. Had 2 epiderals last year and they helped immensely but know that won't fix the problem so until then I sew a while, move a while and sew a while and so forth.  I really like my ergonomical chair!!

TAmmy--NE.

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Rhonnie replied on Tue, Jul 7 2009 10:05 PM

When I get in one of those ergonomical chairs I end up in a knot and can't get out of it....I have one that kid took over cause I couldn't get comfy or use it without being in a knot....maybe its just me tho. But a good chair is a must..the best chair in my house ok i have 2 at sewing machine and computer.

I'm a material girl....Want to see my fabric collection?

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Thank all of you for the excellent suggestions.  I have started with the least expensive ones first and have had improvement.  One of the biggest helps has been to breathe.  I did not realize I was holding my breath so much.  Also, the simple movement of my soulders, legs, and curling my back every now and then is really helping.  All of your help is appreciated and thoughtful.

Alice

Alice, Roanoke, VA

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Linda Lou replied on Sun, Jul 26 2009 8:39 PM

Alice,

I have degenerative joint disease of L4 & L5.  Doc wants to do a lumbar fusion.  What that has to do with quilting you ask? Nothing other than casuing me to buy  a $30.00 back brace that wraps around my body and it feels so good when I am either spending a lot of time quilting or on my feet.  The other suggestions are great as well.  Getting up and moving around and exercising works wonders.

My hubby also brought home a teeter/totter inversion table one day and asked me to try it.  He has spent a temendous amount of time and money trying to find something that woul help ease the pain.  It is one of those things you get on, lock your feet in and hang upside down.  It feels sooooooo good!!!  I have cut my pain meds by 2/3.

By the way.  I continue to quilt as much as I want and I am NOT having surgery!!

Staying busy

Linda Lou

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Thea replied on Sun, Jul 26 2009 8:45 PM

Linda, I have wondered about those tables if they did any good - I have degenerative disc disease also - had 2 discs in my neck fused so far and have several in the T-spine and the L-spine that are getting bad... the last time my L-spine discs acted up I wanted to scream for days the pain down my legs drove me to the emergency room... I put ice on them now - have a belt that has pockets in it and i will fill a baggy with ice and stick one in each of the spots - where that 24 /7... last time i wore it for 5 days before the swelling in the area went down...

If this table does such a good job for you, I might talk to DH about investing in one - I just wonder what I would do while I was upside down - do you think I could hand embroider during that time...

 

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Linda Lou replied on Tue, Jul 28 2009 4:32 PM

Althea,

I don't know if it works for everyone, but is has sure helped me.  Since you have already had some surgery on your back, you might want to check with your doctor first.  Or, if you have had knee replacement.  I understand it is a big no-no with knee replacement and lower back fusions.  It may not make a difference with the neck, I don't know, but you definitely do not want to make things worse.  Also, find a place where you can try one first.  My husband just surprised me with it, but I haven't had any surgeries to speak of. 

No, I don't think you can embroider while hanging upside down.  You are only there for a minute or two at a time, then you rotate back up, rest, then roll back down for another minute.  I wish you the best of luck.

Staying Busy

Linda Lou

 

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Thea replied on Tue, Jul 28 2009 5:02 PM

dang it - can't do it upside down - hmmmm - have to find a way... I haven't had any surgery on my lower back yet - they wanted to but I just said No - I am so tired of having surgeries and it is only 1 disc - we can wait till it is more then 1  - because I have been told - and read - that when you have it fused it causes pressure on the disc surrounding the one fixed. 

I might never have had to have neck surgery if the technician had read that first MRI right and they had put me into PT at that time... but then I don't know for sure as it could have gotten worse maybe with the PT - we will never know - I know though that it did rupture from doing nothing...

they tell me now to put ice and heat - ice and heat... I never know when it is going to flare or what is going to cause it - this last flare up I just woke up one morning and wanted to scream - I ended up with ice on it for I think a week straight... but it did go down and now is almost negligible...

so I just smile and try not to do anything that is going to promote it to happen... so that means I don't do a lot outside the house - I do sew quite a bit in the house - but I do it on and off all day long  - I never sit there for a long time - I do not turn in my chair to iron/press - I get up and walk over to the ironing board...

I thank you for letting me know - and I hope that it helps you a lot - keep me updated - thank you...

 

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Linda Lou replied on Tue, Jul 28 2009 6:42 PM

Sorry Althea,

My doorbell rang.  It was friends so I ended up doing a quick post and was really not ready.  Anyway,  do check with your doctor first.  If he says okay, then I would say go for it.  I feel so good hanging upside down that I don't do anything but hang!!!  I never in my life thought I would use something like this, but I guess when you hurt enough, you will try almost anything.

Have a great day.  Hopefully tomorrow I can finally get started on the quilt for my son and daughter-in-law.  It has been a month now since I have been able to do any sewing.  Ugh!!!  Withdrawal pains are getting pretty bad!!!!!!

Staying busy,

Linda Lou

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I get neck problems from quilting for long periods of time and have adjusted my seat and done all kinds of things and nothing seemed to work...so my chiropractor said that I should stop every 15 minutes or so and stretch...or put a rolled up towel behind my neck and stretch my neck backwards...also to stand and put my hands at my side...palms facing forward and push your hands backwards pressing your shoulder blades together...with your chest lifted... to stretch your shoulders, back and neck...these seem to help me and of course...seeeing my chiropractor to put everything back in place

Ontario, Canada

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Good suggestions Helly. I think a lot of quilters are guilty of sitting at the machine for too long a period of time. I know I do, or rather did. Before, I had my ironing board right by my machine, so I didn't get up to iron. Now, I have a big board setup on the counter and I have to get up to press seams. I don't walk far, but it's far enough that at least I move!

 


Gillette, WY

 

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