on the assumption that you have clearance from his physician, I would suggest that you contact his physical therapist and ask for advice there. Web sites can give you a lot of general information but the PT should be more familiar with his particular situation and ought to know the history of the back problem.
When I have a new client in a similar situation, I always do my own assessment and share this with the PT. I then start with the PT exercises that are familiar to the client and add only those of general conditioning that get the PT stamp of approval. As you continue to work with the client you’ll get a better feeling for his abilities.
Getting started with a client with such issues is always tricky because you do not know him yet. Always err on the side of safety.
I agree with Karin, first find out what he has been doing, perform your own assessment and always start slow no matter how the client may feel. I would also find out why he had back surgery in the first place. There may have been a postural issue that could have caused this and without correcting this their back pain may not subside. Also never move into pain when performing any exercise.
Dr.Susan Klein-Vogelbach, a founding director of a physical therapy school in Basel, Switzerland, was the first to use Swiss balls with adults who had orthopedic or other medical problems.Many back pain sufferers find the ball invaluable in rehabilitation.
I had citated from the wanderful book, written by Maureen Flett “SWISS BALL” for Strength, Tone, and Posture. Author had covered Neutral Alignment and Posture Positions, and also had covered Core Stability Exercises /Beginners’ Level /
Author also had recommended not be rushed and can take anything from an hour to a few weeks to perfect following exercises:
Bridge with Legs Lifts
Bridge and double Knee Flex
Side Walk /lay with the ball between your shoulders in the reverse bridge position/
Hip and Knee Flexion /lay with ball under your shoulders and your feet shoulder width apart/
Reverse Bridge with Leg Extention.
Adductors /lay on the exercise mat with the ball placed between your knees/
With regards, Miroslava.
Hi Alyassia. Since in the fitness world “one size does NOT fit all,” I would highly recommend working with your client’s medical ‘team’ in designing a safe exercise program for him. I have worked with several post-surgical/post-rehab back patients and a key to helping them continue their progress and continue to safely recover from surgery and therapy is working with their physician and therapist. I truly see this type (and really all types) of client ‘referral’ after a surgical or therapy intervention as a ‘continuum of care’ in which I as the trainer am just another important piece on their road to recovery.
I hope that this helps.