Spd and cycling

Discussion in 'Women's Cycling' started by Veater, Jun 8, 2016.

  1. Veater

    Veater New Member

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    I just thought I would share my experience of cycling after suffering with SPD. For people who don't know, SPD is a pregnancy induced disorder which causes the hips to either pull apart, or clench together. It can be excruciatingly painful and women who suffer it often have to use crutches and spend the last few months of pregnancy on complete bed rest.

    I was suffering SPD for the last few months of my pregnancy, but wasn't officially diagnosed until after my baby was born. It was at the point of crying whilst trying to lift my newborn daughter that a doctor assessed my case and realised my pelvic bones were too close together (they were clicking while I walked). I received a bit of help while I was in hospital, and went to see a physiotherapist afterwards.

    During pregnancy, some women say that cycling helps the symptoms of their SPD. Others say the opposite, that it's a major trigger for their pain. But after pregnancy, cycling and SPD are a different issue. People recover from SPD at different speeds, and depending on the symptoms, some women have to follow very specific instructions about what they can and can't do with their legs in order to ease everything back into place.

    Personally for me, when it came to cycling, I found it was easier on me than walking. I was cycling comfortably before I was walking comfortably, essentially. It took a while to gradually ease into it, as I also had an emergency c-section birth, but it's completely possible that you can be cycling again within a few months of giving birth if you've had SPD. You just have to go at your own pace, speak to your physiotherapist, and listen to your body. It will tell you if you're not ready yet.
     
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  2. sharkantropo

    sharkantropo Member

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    Glad to hear that you are back to cycling after a successful recovery from SPD. And quite curious you found it easier than walking
     
  3. Veater

    Veater New Member

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    Yeah, I don't know if it was something to do with the range of motion involved in cycling vs. walking, but I was quite surprised too. When I went for my first ride, I was really expecting it to be disastrous as my walking was still so painful - I couldn't imagine it would be easier, but I had read to give it a try. I'm so glad I did now as it really helped me to recover from the birth and regain my fitness.
     
  4. Novelangel

    Novelangel Member

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    This is the first time I've ever heard of this condition. It sounds terribly painful and debilitating. Does it ever totally heal or improve on its own, or does it require surgical intervention? It sounds as though, for you at least, the cycling was good therapy and since you stated that you've regained your fitness, I am hoping that you're walking normally again without pain? I can imagine that riding your bike over bumps, such as with a gravel or dirt road might have made the condition worse or at least cause pain, but a smooth ride on pavement would be much more therapeutic.
     
  5. Veater

    Veater New Member

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    I agree that most people haven't heard about it. Generally you don't learn about it unless you suffer it personally. More awareness should be raised about it, as pregnant women often don't know that what they're feeling is abnormal. I think it does totally heal on its own, though there can be complications and it doesn't always heal quickly. Some people might start to recover immediately after birth, some people might still have some minor pain years later. I can still find long walks painful after a while, but usually it's a few hours of walking before I start to feel pain.
     
  6. Novelangel

    Novelangel Member

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    I wonder, once this happens during a pregnancy, is it more likely to happen again in future pregnancies? I have no children of my own, but just wondering if this might be the case. People used to think that once you've had a C-section, you'll always have to have them, but that's not the case, so perhaps this condition is similar in the fact that it could happen again, but not necessarily? I am definitely going to do some research on this as I find medical conditions an interesting read.
     
  7. Veater

    Veater New Member

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    Exactly @Novelangel , you might get it again and you might not but the chances are statistically higher. I'm in trouble because I had a c-section and SPD, and also pre-eclampsia which is apparently more likely next time! I think there's more that I could have done before becoming pregnant to ensure that I was in tip top shape though, and I definitely intend to do that next time around.
     
  8. Acheno84

    Acheno84 Member

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    Wow, I have never actually heard of this before today. I'm so sorry to hear that you had that horrible pain to bear. I can only imagine. I didn't even know it was physically possible for that to happen. Man, I hope you're feeling better and I'm happy to hear that you're back to riding again.
     
  9. Novelangel

    Novelangel Member

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    It's good to hear that you have a plan for the future with this condition and that apparently getting into and staying in shape can help you a lot. Getting into shape is something I need to work on as well... I'm not the Energizer Bunny I used to be. My problem is that I'm becoming too much of a couch potato and the weather isn't helping a lot with that, as it has been fairly cold so far this June and as a result, I can't get my usual swimming exercise. I can still walk and ride, however, so my glass is half full. :)
     
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