Owners with Back or other Surgeries

edited August 2012 in Accessories

Close to purchasing a TerraTrike yet hesitant with the back problems. I miss riding a bike since the accident not too mention the weigh problem that is adding up. Four years ago it was a Radical 360 on the lower back and one more 2 years later to remove a bit of hardware. It's become more difficult to walk distances and have little balance problems with the neurophathy. The cane assists the balance problem. I don't think think the neurostimulator implanted in the spine would be a problem.

Are there other owners that that ride with back problems or hip problems? Has the Trike been a benefit to you. Please, any input or your experiences would be greatly appreciated.

Pardon me for dragging on so long as a new member. I'm located in the Lubbock, Texas area and do not see many.
Thank you,


  • Hi:
    I had bilateral knee replacement surgery 3 years ago. I had steadily picked up weight (about 40 lbs) when I was having a difficult time during the few years when I was in so much pain from OA and exercising was limited. Once I had my surgery I started exercising again on an elliptical machine, then added the treadmill, and a little walking for variation. But I had to force myself to stay interested in exercising. When I tried out trikes I was hooked .... I bought a Rover 8 approx. 6 weeks ago and I really enjoy it. At first it was rough because I think I am using different muscles than I was previously, but my stamina is getting better and my aches are getting less and less. Another benefit to TT is that everyone on this forum have been so helpful when I ran into a few problems. They helped me adjust and tweak my Rover so that my knees aren't aching when I ride any more. Especially helpful was the help with how to adjust my seat so that my legs aren't fully extended when I pedal. I did check with my doctor before buying my trike and his recommendation was that cycling, especially on trikes, is one of the best exercises, especially for surguries such as ours. I haven't been riding as much as I've wanted to due to the excessive heat here in Indiana (I do short stints in early morning when it is a little tolerable). I can tell you that it's been a lot of fun and my knees are feeling better and better all the time. If you read through the old postings on this forum, particularly on the Rover postings, you'll find many people discussing heart issues, hip replacement issues, joint issues, balance issues, etc. and saying that triking has been great for whatever health issue they are dealing with. Like me many are testifying that triking has been beneficial to getting back in shape, strenghtening muscles, losing weight, and/or building up stamina because the ride on a trike doesn't stress out your body as other forms of exercising does. Sitting while riding is the way to go! So check with your doctor .... triking in the great outdoors is so much fun!!!
  • Sunshine,
    Thank you, I'm like you the Orthopedist encouraged me to obtain one. He has even written me a prescription for one. Your muscles that hurt, and were difficult to use have become easier as you have used them more?
    I thinks it's an asset as you mentioned moving seat and pedals to assist in this. I will browse throughout the old Rover posts. I had been looking at the columns of Zoomer as I had been focussing on one of them. I have the same problem regarding interest going to the Y and doing things. Being an old 56, 5'11" with the weight of 240 it has a tendency of keeping me going to the office commute and then home.

    I'm glad to see it has helped your knee and made it easier for you. It sounds like you are working at it!
    Good luck on the knee
  • Yep, as I’ve used my Rover 8 my knees and thighs don’t ache like they use too. But I think it has been more than me just getting use to riding. I credit this forum for that because as I shared my concerns on the Rover site, forum members helped this new Rover owner tweak and adjust my Rover. It was especially helpful to me since I had never learned to ride a regular bike so this experience was really new to me. And even though my family members are bikers they sometimes don’t get just how “green” I am. Forum members told me about checking my “cadence”, adjusting my seat so as not to strain my knees, gave me tips on how to shift gears efficiently on inclines/riding so that I wasn’t putting undue stress on my knees and pumping/pushing too hard, guided me in deciding which way to go with the type of pedals to purchase (Powergrips or Clipless?) which helps me to meddle more efficiently in using the trike’s power instead of my own and the list goes on and on. But I think the biggest advantage to the Rover 8 which will help you with your back issues, as it has helped me, is the higher seat of the Rover. The Rover seat sits at 18.5 inches, a full 9 inches higher than other Terra Trike models and other trikes in general. The additional height really makes a difference in the ease of getting in and out of a trike! The new Rambler’s seat is at 15 inches. When I tested other trikes at the bike store the sales person had to give me a hand up sometimes or I really had to push up to get up. I bought the Rover without riding it first but it’s the best decision I made when making my bike purchase. Getting up from the Rover is literally as comfortable as getting up from a chair. I was tempted to buy a different model because the colors available in models such as the Path 8’s yellow (my favorite color) or the gorgeous red of the Tour model are absolutely gorgeous. But sanity prevailed :) , and I wound up purchasing what was best for my body, and not what was nice for my styling sensibilities. Who knows maybe I’ll end up with one of the other models some day? But I do get my bling on, and my Caribbean flair for color pacified with my accessories. I added 2 yellow Purple Sky flags with multi colored circles and streamers (in neon green, orange, reflective, a little sky blue), yellow decals, yellow and black helmet and reflective yellow harnesses …. Motorists and others can see me from a mile away!!!! I look like a traveling “carnival on wheels” :lol: and I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE it! It brightens my spirits and puts a smile on my face every time I go to ride my Rover. Many say that the Rover is not a sporty trike and it is not a “fast” trike, but it is fast enough for me and as comfortable as all get up. There is absolutely no strain on my back and I’m learning to minimize any strain on my knees. Yep, my body is loving it!
    Suggestion: You may want to post your question on a different spot other than under "accessories" so that others can more readily see it and help you with their thoughts and experiences with health issues. Best of luck with your decision and I hope you join the TT family.
  • I switched because of my back. I haven't had surgery but I live with dayly pain. I chose the zoomer model because at that time it was the only model that had a 26" wheel option. Which is something I wanted. I love it! But it is low to the ground and when I'm exhausted, it can be a chore to get out of the seat. I call it my favorite lawn chair on wheels. The best thing about all of the terratrike models is their seats. You can adjust them to any angle to fit your comfort level.
  • I'm a brand new Tour owner (in fact, this is my first post). I have not had surgery, but have one herniated and one or more bulging discs in the lower back. I am in the middle of lumbar epidural injections and had one last week. By Monday of this week I needed a shot of Toradol.

    Yesterday, I picked up my new Tour, and today I had my maiden voyage. Short, a little over 1/2 mile, but then I'm horribly out of shape.

    Probably my major concern (and motivation) was my back.

    I don't have the depth of experience with the trike yet to comment from experience. But I did much research going in. I had the opportunity to try many different types of trikes at least on an around-the-block test ride. I really like the Tour for handling and comfort.

    Price was a factor too. I seriously considered a trike with full suspension (the Ice Sprint). It is 2.5x the cost of the Tour. Not in the budget. It will definitely give you more shock-absorption. The Ice Adventure also sits quite a bit higher off the ground than the Tour (or the Sprint) and comes with full suspension on front and rear wheels as well.

    I was comfortable with the Tour because I plan to ride primarily on paved or concrete bike paths. My first ride was on a dirt path, and there were quite a few bumps but NONE of them went into my back.

    The other thing I plan to do is get a waterproof memory foam piece to slide between the seat webbing on the Tour which should provide even more comfort. I use a memory foam seat with the tailbone cut out and I take it with me on the trike.

    I am delighted with my choice. If you are buying from Terratrike directly you have 30 days to try it and make sure it doesn't cause you physical problems. I would suggest you do it! If it is comfortable for you to sit in, it will probably be very comfortable out on the trail.

    Best of luck with your decision.

  • While my crazy dog was one factor for getting a trike instead of a bike, my knee surgery last year had me looking in other directions. I'm easily bored, so I knew I had to get something that would keep me interested, get me outside, provide exercise, and be lots of fun! This completely supplies all of that and more! I've met people - in fact, if I don't get out of the house early enough on a weekend morning, I *will* be stopping to talk to people to tell them all about the trike!

    The positives in about a month have added up. My endurance is much better. When I first started, I was huffing and puffing before I'd gone a mile. Now I can go five miles and sing along with my iPod. I will be breaking my ten mile barrier very soon, I just know it! I feel that I'm getting healthier on the inside before it starts to show on the outside. The only problem is that I'm not sure how long that will take because this sure doesn't feel like exercise!

    So don't hesitate to get one. I've found that riding on smooth pavement means that I don't need expensive suspension. When I get my Rambler, I will be getting larger tires for more cush, but that's about it. Oh, by the way - my orthopedic surgeon is very enthusiastic about recumbent riding of any kind, even if it's just in the gym.

    Note to Sunshine: Your description of your bling sounds great. But until we see pictures... :D
    I Have My Rambler, SUNNIE!
    My Noob Blog - frontfendersngum.com

  • I agree with vegasrenie,

    If there are no pictures - it didn't happen... ;)

  • I have chronic back, knee and ankle pain. Had 2 open heart surgeries 3 years ago. It was getting to where i could ride my trek only 5 to 6 miles before my back gave out.
    First ride on my tour II was 15 miles. No pain what so ever unless you count the bruised ego getting in and out of it. Totally comfortable on the back and the more horizontal leg position makes long rides a breeze. Best investment i ever made.

    Even better, I worked with Lydia and Kelli to get my trike and that bunch of folks at TT is awesome.

    I think anyone with back issues should ride a trike. Some models are taller than the tour but they are still extremely comfortable. You wont be disappointed. Just call Kelli or Lydia and they can set you up!

    Have fun!!!!-
  • Just bought a Tour II about a month ago, I love to ride but due to my back problems I was riding my mountain and road bikes less and less, I am now riding every day between 13-25 miles with no lower back problems. I see you posted this a while back I hope you have purchased one this is the MOST comfortable bike I have ever ridden!! Good luck!
  • Referring to the original question, I own a Rover, had it for a little over 18 months, about 1400 miles on it. Both left knee, and right hip have been replaced. The right hip was done June of 2011, and with the DR's OK, was slowly riding my trike some 3 weeks after the replacement. The key (for me) was making sure than neither the knees, nor the hips 'closed' at an angle of more than 90 degrees. Very easy to do on the Rover, with 165mm cranks.

    Only you can decide whether or not you need suspension due to your back issues. I love my trike, it helps me to be active, and lose weight. My overall health has improved greatly since getting and riding my trike. So, if this is something you can do, it'll be wonderful for you.
    TerraTrike Rover W/N360 by NuVinci
    http://s1103.photobucket.com/albums/g475/Peter_CC/Peter_C Trike Album/
    (copy and paste into your browser) to see ---> My Trike Photos
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