Research: GALANTINO and co-workers,

Listed in Issue 102


GALANTINO and co-workers, Program in Physical Therapy, Richard Stockton College of New Jersey, USA, have conducted a pilot study on Hatha yoga in chronic back pain.


The aim of the study was to evaluate a possible design for a 6-week modified Hatha yoga protocol and its impact on participants with chronic low back pain.


22 participants with chronic low back pain were randomized to either a yoga intervention or waiting list control. A yoga protocol specifically designed for low back pain by a yoga instructor was administered for one hour twice weekly for 6 weeks. Primary outcome measures included the forward reach and sit and reach test, Oswestry disability index and Beck depression inventory. Interviews were conducted to assess how participants experienced the instructor, group dynamics, and the impact of yoga on their life.


Trends in the functional measures showed better balance and flexibility and decreased disability and depression in the intervention group, but this pilot was not powered to reach statistical significance.


A yoga-based intervention may benefit chronic low back pain patients, but a larger study is necessary to provide more definitive evidence. Also, additional functional outcome measures should be explored.


Galantino ML, Bzdewka TM, Eissler RJL, Holbrook ML, Mogck EP, Geigle P, Farrar JT. The impact of modified Hatha yoga on chronic low back pain: a pilot study. Alternative Therapies in Health and Medicine 10 (2): 56-59, Mar-Apr 2004.

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