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Using the Pilot with a weakened back

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#1 Alan Chapman

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Posted 25 March 2009 - 04:51 PM

I should be receiving my Pilot in about 10 days and my wife just pointed out that it could cause my back problems. I have a slightly weakend back, around the right side of the pelvis where it was dislocated when I was a child.....32 years ago. If I am on my feet for about 6-8 hours my lower back aches quite badly, I won't be using the pilot anywhere near this long.

What I am asking is how much extra strain would a pilot + Sony HVRZ5 put on my back, where do you feel it the most, is it your upper back, lower back, shoulders? I have never used one yet and would like a bit of an idea of where it is going to be felt, or is my kit so light that I won't even notice it?

Any help appreciated.
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#2 Jess Haas SOC

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Posted 25 March 2009 - 06:19 PM

From what I have seen the Pilot is light enough to not be a very fatiguing rig even for inexperienced operators. I don't know your particular condition and I am not a doctor so I can't really give any advice as far as that goes, but it is not very hard on your body so you might have some luck with it.

The one time I used a flyer it had an XLHD mounted on it and I felt like I really didn't feel any different wearing it than wearing nothing at all. That being said I am used to a big rig.

As far as the muscles that are worked goes its mainly that big one in your back that goes from your but to your shoulder blade (or something like that). Often refered to as "that muscle." Once you get used to operating and build up those muscles you don't really notice that and its all about the legs. With the pilot I wouldn't expect either to have to work very hard under normal circumstances.

There is a great article floating around about steadicam posture that you should read. Some general postural advice such as that offerend in mckenzies back books might also be useful for both your steadicam posture and your everyday back problems.

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#3 Dave Gish

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Posted 25 March 2009 - 07:22 PM

When you use it for the first time, your back gets sore pretty fast, but after you've learned how to balance it with your hips, leg strength and endurance become the main physical attributes. And for a Pilot, you don't start needing that for many hours.
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