I'm 9 years post spinal fusion for scoliosis. Released from the care of my surgeon unless something starts going badly. Minimal pain issues- the more active i stay, the better I tend to feel.
Having been given a wonderful horse for christmas to replace my partner of 10 years that I lost before thanksgiving, I find myself chock full of new goals, my long term one being to compete in adult equitation finals in a few years.
I have developed a habit since my fusion.... Tipping my torso forward, being forward headed . It seems the second I use any sort of core strength, it instantly tips me forward (I'm fused down to L1 so I have some flexibility left). So evidently my "front side" muscles have gotten dominant somewhere along the way.
Any good ideas for exercises to strengthen up my back muscles?
Lots of transitions, done correctly, possibly on the longe with a good dressage trainer! I'm not certain it's your abs that are stronger than your back, but possibly the problem is coming from your hips and seat. Would need to see you ride in order to guess on that one. But lots of "perfect practice makes perfect" with a good instructor with sharp eyes will help a lot!
I have the same problem AND scoliosis without fusion. I don't know if these exercising are appropriate after fusion.
I lay on an exercise ball on my tummy/hips, toes against the base of the wall behind me. Then lift my head and shoulders towards the ceiling as high as I can, getting a good arch in my back.
My sternum was removed and pecs muscles criss-crossed across the hole and reattached to my clavicle, which pulls my shoulders to the front. To open my chest, I lay on my ball on my back with the ball under my mid-back. I hold light weights in my hands and dropped elbows as far as they will go comfortably and then extend my hands out to the side. That's the down stroke. The upstroke is to bend my arms at the elbows to a 90 degree angle and then lift the weights towards the ceiling, stretching as high as I can.
Start simply with an exercise called 'good morning'. Just a slight bow at the waist and return to full upright. Start at a 30-45 degree bend and work, as you become comfortable, to a 90 degree bend at the waist with a flat back and return to standing. Try 3 sets of 10 reps every other day. When you can do that comfortably move to the pilates ball on your stomach. Again start with a little arch 3 sets of 10. Increase the arch as you become comfortable.