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Physical Exercise Interventions and Low Back Pain 

Physical Exercise Interventions and Low Back Pain
Physical Exercise Interventions and Low Back Pain

J. Bart Staal

, Chris G. Maher

, and William S. Shaw

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date: 16 May 2022

In this chapter, we review the effects of physical exercise in subacute and chronic LBP. Although the Cochrane systematic literature review by Hayden et al. (2005) has provided a reasonable summary of the effects of physical exercise interventions, the present chapter will place more emphasis on the context of daily clinical practice, and how that may influence exercise outcomes. To accomplish this, we explored the PubMed and Embase databases for publications in the last 5 years with particular interest in relevant systematic reviews and additional randomized controlled trials. Based on this literature search, the most common types of exercise therapy will be described according to concept and content of treatment. For the purpose, we subdivide physical exercise interventions into the following types of exercise interventions:

Exercises aimed at improving aspects of physical fitness (e.g. strength, muscle endurance, movement coordination).

Specific spinal stabilization exercises.

McKenzie exercises.

Physical exercises from a cognitive-behavioural perspective (aimed at reducing fear or altering cognitions).

Physical exercise interventions for disabled workers with LBP (i.e. the occupational healthcare perspective).

Although it should be noted that there may be some overlap, we believe this classification corresponds with the current literature and with clinical practice as common in many countries around the world. In addition, the effects of these subgroups of exercise therapies as reported in the literature will be summarized and their clinical implications will be discussed.

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