Re: Aikido with a back injury
I have Spondylosis (Degenerative Disc Disease). Army has put me on permanent profile, which means I am not allowed or required to run or do any high impact stuff anymore. Recent MRI of my C spine shows severe injury and trauma. Got it done because one day about a month ago when working on the computer at work my Right arm went numb.
Was told to stop taking hard impacts on my spine if I wanted to be able to walk 20 years from now.
Bummed out I can't do Judo anymore. Still doing BJJ though, but I am careful about impact.
I think it is good for your spine to stretch, twist, articulate and move. In many respects Aikido will be very helpful in this area. Trained properly it should improve your spinal health.
However, ukemi can be a bitch and many beginners (and experience folks too!) take unecessary ukemi that is hard and incorrect too! This is what I would be concerned about if you have back problems.
That said, I have re-evaluated my practice and don't feel it needs to be this way, and have found no obstacles to practicing aikido waza and maintaining good spinal health.