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Harness with the most back support
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GURGLETROUSERS



Joined: 30 Dec 2009
Posts: 2319

PostPosted: Fri Apr 12, 2019 1:39 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

One of my main concerns in dynamic (heavy back loading) sports is possible disc damage in the lower spine. (The scan showed mine were a bit 'squashed' by age and use.)

As others have said, a seat harness once you are hooked into the lines, removes all strain and stress from the lower joints with only a lightish hand grip needed on the boom. You are free to twist and bend at will, with relatively little loading on that vulnerable section of spine. (A weak evolutionary part.)

Others may have different back problems which may be helped by wearing a close fitting waist 'girdle', but that does not seem to be the norm.

I'm curious Craig. What was your 'poster boy' back problem, and what surgical cure did it require?
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cgoudie1



Joined: 10 Apr 2006
Posts: 2249
Location: Killer Sturgeon Cove

PostPosted: Fri Apr 12, 2019 10:34 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Greetings GT,

I'll try and make this brief. I am tall and relatively thin (as a young man I
I Was 6'3" and 165 lbs). My structure is pretty light. As my physicians
have put it, people built like me are high risk for low back problems.
Also as a young man (20s) I had a job that required considerable heavy
lifting. The combination of those things (of course it wasn't the reckless abandon mogul skiing ;*) ) caused my L4/L5 to rupture. The 1st surgery
was a discectomy (basically just cutting away anything impinging on my
spinal column at L4/L5. I think I was 24 at the time. That worked well
until I was about 34, when what was left of my disk had collapsed to the
point that a full on L4/L5 fusion was in order. That also worked very well
(and that is extremely lucky for me as most are pretty much done with
active sports after that, some are even done walking or running). That
did require a long recovery and worked great for about
10 more years. The issue with fusion in general, is that even if all goes
perfectly, the disks above the fused vertebrae, now have to deal with
more stress, and they start to deteriorate. At 44, I embarked on a
pretty regimented physical therapy, which kept me in reasonably good
condition for many more years. At 63 years I consider myself possibly
the most fortunate person alive, because I'm still very active (for an old dude) and in fact my friends (most of whom are much younger than I)
are starting to catch up to me in the aches and pains department (misery
loves company). I will mention that I discovered the best therapy (for me)
is to get horizontal mid day for about an hour. Forcing myself to do this
seems to have really improved my back health.

Also (according to my doctors, some of whom I have outlived) I apparently
have a high tolerance to pain.

So, any day on a bike, or the snow, or the water, or just hiking, is pure
bonus for me, and I cherish each. If I'd been born 45,000 years ago, I'd
have been wolf food at 24.

I recently taught my Grandson and Granddaughter how to skateboard, how's
that for extended play in the bonus round of life. ;*)

-Craig

p.s. There may be a seat harness in my future, we'll see how it goes.

GURGLETROUSERS wrote:


I'm curious Craig. What was your 'poster boy' back problem, and what surgical cure did it require?
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GURGLETROUSERS



Joined: 30 Dec 2009
Posts: 2319

PostPosted: Fri Apr 12, 2019 12:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Brilliant Craig. I always had a hunch that you were concealing more than you were telling! (I'm your build also, 6'3" and slim, in the same high risk category.)

I can understand why you may find a waist harness braces the section above the 'welded' joints, leaving you free to lock the lower part with feet anchored in the straps. (Only guessing there.)

Absolutely agree with your attitude, and I copy it. (Human dynamo syndrome, or 'galloping hairpin' in my case.) Lying horizontal is a key part of my physio regime also. I sleep on my back, and get jip from it if on one side for any length of time. I remember being advised by a specialist that many of the exercise remedies for back pain were pointless. He suggested just two, one of which was the horizontal thing, and the other a vertical one with a special way of tensing the back. As with you, they work for me.

Odd thing is that I now find just walking for too long can become painful, and stiffen the lower back, yet riding the bike has no detrimental effect and actually helps!

Anyway, thank you Craig, and we'll compare notes in another 10 years time. I'm sure that with our attitude, we are almost indestructible. (I may not even have made any spelling mistakes in the above, either. Pity I get syntax all muddled up!)
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manuel



Joined: 08 Oct 2007
Posts: 937

PostPosted: Sat Apr 13, 2019 10:24 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Can a waist harness improve one's back condition?
Can boards passively make things easier for the back?
Can overpowered conditions be easier than underpowered on/off on one's body?

Sitting for long periods is know to be bad even for people who exercise. I got a sciatic issue from making repeated top turns with improper timing and sail trimming. Uphauling can destroy anyone's back.

Can one swim effectively with a seat harness?

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GURGLETROUSERS



Joined: 30 Dec 2009
Posts: 2319

PostPosted: Sun Apr 14, 2019 4:22 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

We vary so much Manuel that it's hard to say. The 'sweet spot' as regards minimal stress on joints as a whole, must surely be proper and consistently powered planing with a medium sized sail and middish sized board (5.0 and 84/94 litres) locked in the harness, and just enjoying it. (singing optional, as is sea state -as long as not too demanding.)

As you say, twisting and yanking about in the surf, out of the harness(? your sciatic issue?) can, in the heat of the action, overstress things. But we seem to instinctively react in a 'learnt' way, to help minimise injury. Probably we absorb short sharp (within reason) potentially damaging shocks more safely than prolonged ones. Did you overstep that fine line, in the heat of the moment?

As to overpowered v. underpowered, we all differ in what we find more tolerable. At least with being underpowered the extra stress is containable in that you can just drop into the water and briefly rest. (Friday, 133 slalom/7.0 rig/ lousy waffy non plane and bouncy sea. Half an hour -NO singing- and off home to sulk!) Being overpowered though in persistent gusts, while properly planing all the while between, gives no chance to rest and recover, so I would find that not helpful.

As for uphauling, don't remind us - learning days on old longboards, with 6 hour sessions of continually falling and heaving the blasted rig back up! (Enjoyed it too much at the time to realise it HURT!!)

Anyway, happy surfing Manuel. Some of us are reining it in a bit nowadays. (Yes, hard to swim in a seat harness, but if in an emergency situation it can be ditched.
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jingebritsen



Joined: 21 Aug 2002
Posts: 3307

PostPosted: Sun Apr 14, 2019 4:45 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

hard to swim with seat? not for me.

overpowered is such a relative term. i sail lit up with a 7.5 and others with much smaller, yet they complain about OP.....

choices make a big difference:

mast
sail
fin
board
trim
harness
harness line length

lots of discuss beyond my willingness to type. suffice it to say, balance of all these choices makes loads of differences.

find a racer group that like to tweak all these things. the fastest typically have the least differences in all these choices. adapt to what they do to your type of sailing.

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GURGLETROUSERS



Joined: 30 Dec 2009
Posts: 2319

PostPosted: Sun Apr 14, 2019 9:29 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yes, but so can weight John! (Make a big difference in overpowering conditions.)

When I was racing it was obvious that heavyweights had an advantage in higher winds, and rougher seas. A 'hiked out' heavyweight is less subject (inertia) to being catapulted by a sudden gust than a lightweight, when pushing to the limit.

I don't think things have changed that much, have they? (My weight only 144 lbs average nude - very low body fat percentage from cycling training.)
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isobars



Joined: 12 Dec 1999
Posts: 19215

PostPosted: Sun Apr 14, 2019 4:19 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

manuel wrote:
1. Can a waist harness improve one's back condition?
2. Can boards passively make things easier for the back?
3. Can overpowered conditions be easier than underpowered on/off on one's body?
4.Uphauling can destroy anyone's back.
5. Can one swim effectively with a seat harness?

1. Depends.
2. Sure. Big boards require less work.
3. HELL, yes. Hook up, hang in the harness, and let your hardware carry the load. That's one reason I buttsail or swim across major, nasty, beyond-gusty wind shadows and often hook in when slogging any significant distance.
4. Not if done right. You know the mantra: lift with the legs, not the back. Applies to dowhauling, too.
5. I never know my seat harness is on, whether I'm walking, swimming, taking a nap during a prolonged lull, cooking and eating lunch, windsurfing, heaving for air after a long stretch of heavy maneuvering or sprinting after an escaped board, etc. If it feels tight or restricts deep belly-breathing, it's too tight. Solution: loosen it. I want 'em plenty snug, but not tight. Like one poster above, I don't use DaKine's vaunted, near-ubiquitous, TIGHT (else what good is it?), Power Belt (i.e., corset). They've been around for decades, and I still don't get it. If I wanted to restrict my deepest breathing, I'd buy a frigging waist harness.

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manuel



Joined: 08 Oct 2007
Posts: 937

PostPosted: Mon Apr 15, 2019 8:14 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

As a side note, when leaning back and out in a waist harness, by sure to try and stick your butt out keeping your back straight as opposed to sit and sag Smile !
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GURGLETROUSERS



Joined: 30 Dec 2009
Posts: 2319

PostPosted: Tue Apr 16, 2019 2:01 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well I can say for certain that planing in the straps and harness with a biggish sail on my Kona longboard (as good and as comfy as it is in comparison to other longboards) in a bouncy sea, is more physical over a period of time than planing in straps and harness with a medium sail on any of my smaller mid range boards, in those same sea conditions.

The worst board (for my back) I ever owned was a Prodigy hybrid, which at speed on a roughish sea was incredibly harsh and bouncy, with a hell of an ankle twisting swing rate. I wonder if anybody used a waist harness on that?

Board size and type obviously makes a big difference when working them at their full potential, rather than just keeping within their comfort zone. For example, on a 6 metre well powered day in a bouncy choppy/swelly day I spent a while on my 133 litre slalom board, before swapping down to my 104 litre Syncro board (same rig, same sea) and the difference couldn't be ignored.

Complete comfort and relative ease, AND, barely any actual difference in speed. (just 1 m.p.h. down at max.) It was the difference between enjoyment, and just trying to prove how good you are.

One advantage of having passed your peak is that you no longer bother chasing rainbows. Mid effort, and mid performance is where it now stands, and, in my opinion, any old hand claiming otherwise is fooling themselves. (Makes sense to me.)
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