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I'm looking for effective exercises to strengthen the entire core while minimizing stress and flexing on the lower back.

No exercises recommended here will be performed without a doctor's approval so please make recommendations freely.

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    "Those who have undergone spinal fusion surgery" is far too broad of a term for anyone here to answer. GO SEE A DOCTOR! – Alec Jan 3 '16 at 22:21
  • Two vertebrate in the lower back were fused which slightly reduces flexibility making a traditional sit up difficult. I was hoping to find alternative exercises. There is no reason to see a doctor and I would thank you not to yell. – user18963 Jan 4 '16 at 1:52
  • Sorry for being loud. But I have to insist. If you need to specify that there is a back injury involved, then it is a medical issue. Worst case scenario; we propose a set of exercises that end up being catastrophic. That's why such questions are only fit for those with medical training, be it a doctor or a physical therapist. – Alec Jan 4 '16 at 8:17
  • To some extent, by the time a human reaches 50 or 60 they have medical issues that affect their physical fitness routines. It's a little much to say that we're excluding that population from any questions and answers. – Eric Jan 4 '16 at 12:05
  • I understand Alec, thanks. I realize no one here wants to offer any advice that may cause harm. I see that "spinal fusion surgery" sounds a bit alarming. I'll modify my post. – user18963 Jan 4 '16 at 18:48
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As you wrote the core, that would mean also obliques etc.

However, here are some exercises you could do:

take care and do the exercises with caution.

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I'm not sure what your condition is, but an exercise not very taxing on the spine for core (mostly abs) would be: cable crunch (http://www.bodybuilding.com/exercises/detail/view/name/cable-crunch)

EDIT: But you should check with a doctor for sure!

Keep up the good work!

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  • If done kneeling, it could happen that you are causing too much pressure on lower back - if done wrong or with higher reps as one gets weaker during a set – mitro Jan 6 '16 at 8:39

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