2004 Student Research Conference:
17th Annual Student Research Conference

Human Potential and Performance

Relationships Between Lower Back Flexibility Tests and Lower Back Pain
Aaron Armstrong* and David Dudeck
Dr. Jerry Mayhew, Faculty Mentor

The sit and reach field test of flexibility has been very commonly used to assess lower back and hamstring flexibility, which are thought to be indicators of lower back pain. Three field tests (standard sit-and-reach [SSR], modified sit-and-reach [MSR], and relaxed sit-and-reach [RSR]) and one clinical test (goniometer measure of trunk flexion [GTF]) were performed on college students (n = 35). Participants also completed a back pain questionnaire. GTF was found to be a significant predictor of lower back pain in men and women. None of the field tests were found to be significant predictors of back pain. GTF was significantly correlated (r = 0.60) with SSR in males, but not females (r = 0.39). A negative correlation (r = -0.24) between GTF and increased back pain rating shows a trend of higher back pain in subjects with decreased range of motion in the trunk.

Keywords: Flexibility, Back pain, Sit and Reach, Goniometer

Topic(s):Exercise Science

Presentation Type: Oral Paper

Session: 43-4
Location: VH 1000
Time: 4:30

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