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Exercise reduces chronic lower back pain by up to 16%

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Aerobic exercise

Being highly active reduces the risk of chronic lower back pain by 16 per cent, new research reveals. Regular moderate activity lowers the risk by 14 per cent, a study review found.

Yet, exercise has no impact on short-term back pain or that, which causes hospitalisation or disability, the research adds. The findings were published in the British Journal of Sports Medicine.

For decades powerful painkillers have been doled out in their millions to relieve the agony of back pain – but growing evidence suggests the drugs are ineffective for the complaint, as well as being highly addictive.

Now researchers at Boston Medical Centre have found yoga may be a useful tool for people who struggle to ease their pain. Researchers from the Finnish Institute of Occupational Health in Helsinki analysed data from 36 studies that included 158,475 people. The studies’ participants did not have back pain at the start of the investigations. Physical activity was defined as sport and intentional exercise, as well as walking and climbing stairs.

The participants were considered active if they engaged in physical activity at least twice a week for a minimum of 60 minutes. Results revealed that being highly active reduces the risk of chronic lower back pain by 16 per cent compared to those who do not regularly exercise. Moderate activity reduces the risk by 14 per cent. Yet, exercise does not have an impact on short-term back pain or that, which causes hospitalisation or disability.


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