View Full Version : Riding with a back injury

10-01-2014, 06:16 PM
Hi Everyone,

We're looking for some current advice on riding a few of the rides with a back injury. How much jolting, jerking, and bouncing is involved with the current version of the Safari at Animal Kingdom and with the new 7 Dwarfs Mine Train?

We know to skip all of the roller coasters, Star Tours, Mission to Mars, Tower of Terror, and Test Track. Are there other rides that would be hard on the back that I'm forgetting?

Thanks so much for your help!!

10-01-2014, 06:44 PM
What does your Dr. say? I know if it was me, I'd be wary of anything other than shows if I was nursing a serious back problem. It's not worth the risk. Every back is different, so only you know for sure, but I know people who have aggravated relatively small problems by doing relatively mild activities and then ended up having to have back surgery.
I'd say the safari ride, although relatively mild compared to the big coasters, could have some bumpy, jerky parts that could easily aggravate a bad back. The mine train may be smoother, but I'd be careful. I know the disclaimer signs that Disney posts at the entrance to most rides will warn you about riding with back problems.

10-01-2014, 09:35 PM
I 2nd checking with your doctor on this. Depending on the injury even rides like PoTC which seem calm could be a problem, for some reason the new boats really bother my back.

It's the ones you don't expect that can ruin your vacation. DS22 is rehabbing from back to back sports concussions since April and was told to avoid roller coaster and such. Never thinking, we rode TSM in August and the whipping motion on the turns set him back. Something you normally wouldn't notice ended his trip.

Be careful and heed the doctor's advice and the signs.

10-02-2014, 01:45 AM
Probably anything with a height restriction. I think Kilimanjaro Safaris is quite bumpy. Water slides might be good to avoid.

If in doubt - skip it.

As for checking with your doctor, sometimes this doesn't work. While doing work up for knee replacement, we found out that DH had had a heart attack, very mild as we weren't even aware it was a heart attack, and his cardiologist was horrified that we were thinking of a Disney trip years after the attack. He was certain any sort of sudden motion would jar loose plaque. From his description, I wondered at even driving a car or walking down stairs. Sounded very dire.

I go to a different cardiologist who is familiar with Disney rides. He had a different take on the possible dangers. Cedar Point, maybe not a good idea. But Disney, he couldn't see any problem. And he isn't even a Disney fan.

This is not to say that folks shouldn't listen to their doctors, just that sometimes they may not have sufficient information. If so, when in doubt, skip it, is your best bet.

It's still possible to have a wonderful time. Maybe doing stuff you never thought to do before will make for a very memorable trip.


10-02-2014, 04:41 AM
I have back pain and bad knees... really the only ride I have ever had problems on are the ones that are stimulated. They tend to jost you around a lot.

10-02-2014, 09:47 AM
Of course like they said always check with your doctor, but I can tell you that Dinosour really bothered my neck and back. I've always been fine on the Safari except when they put us in the back row it was very bouncy. I'm sure if you ask a CM they will put you in a front row.:mickey:

10-02-2014, 02:04 PM
Space Mountain is the worst for jerking ... the rest are more smooth, maybe Thunder Mountain some, but not too bad .... :mickey:

10-02-2014, 02:28 PM
I've always been fine on the Safari except when they put us in the back row it was very bouncy. I'm sure if you ask a CM they will put you in a front row.:mickey:

Back row is very bouncy. I came completely off my seat once in the back row....

10-02-2014, 08:45 PM
Thank you all so much for the responses, concern, and advice! Great advice about requesting the front of the safari -- I wouldn't have thought of that.

Yes, Dinosaur -- that's a bad one for a bad back! I meant to put that on my list. It almost threw me out of the car years ago and I never went on it again.

And yes, the doctor knows about the trip and is okay with it. He thought it wasn't likely to make things worse. But this is exactly the type of advice I was looking for. So, thank you!

10-04-2014, 01:07 AM
Like the others - doctors advice is good.

Depending on the extent of your injury and your stage of recovery also has a lot to do with it. I have a pretty major back injury involving several bad lower back discs and 6 years of rehabilitation behind me and I do almost all of the rides. My injury is better in warmer weather so the hotter it is, the more rides I can do. If it's colder, I stay to very basic rides. If its a ride you've never done before, have folks that you trust ride before you do and give you a rating. Has helped me avoid bad rides.

Listen to your body and enjoy - after all, it's still Disney!

10-04-2014, 07:19 PM
As far as 7 dwarfs, I'd ask if you would ride Thunder Mountain. I felt it was essentially the same right just 4 times the wait (and shorter ride).

Safari, I'd say no to. I haven't any back problems, and I feel like I will after I ride. It's a lot like driving on the freeways in Michigan (if you've ever done that). Very good at loosening the bladder.

10-04-2014, 11:01 PM
I rode the mine train today. I've had three back surgeries (2 fusions). I'm completely healed from the surgeries, but if your injury is current, I would not ride this. It's somewhat smooth, but backs are to fragile to risk.