gms | German Medical Science

15th Congress of the European Forum for Research in Rehabilitation (EFRR)

15.04. - 17.04.2019, Berlin

Effects of pilates and home exercise on pain, functional level and core muscles thickness on patients with low back pain

Meeting Abstract

15th Congress of the European Forum for Research in Rehabilitation (EFRR). Berlin, 15.-17.04.2019. Düsseldorf: German Medical Science GMS Publishing House; 2019. Doc036

doi: 10.3205/19efrr036, urn:nbn:de:0183-19efrr0360

Published: April 16, 2019

© 2019 Batıbay et al.
This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License. See license information at



Background: Pilates has become a popular exercise in rehabilitation.

Aim: To investigate the effects of pilates exercise by training the muscles responsible for core stabilization in patients with chronic low back pain (CLPB); considering pain, functional level, depression, quality of life, and muscle thickness measured by ultrasound imaging and to compare it with home based exercise.

Method: A prospective, randomized-single blinded study included 60 female patients with CLBP aged 18–60 years.Patients were randomized into 2 groups. The first group (n=30) performed pilates 3 days/week for 8 weeks. The second group (n=30) was given home exercise program 3 times/week for 8 weeks. The evaluations were made both at the beginning and end of the treatment. Evaluation parameters included VAS (visual analogue scale), Oswestry Disability Index, Qubec Disability Scale, Short Form-36, Beck Depression Questionnaire, sit and reach test, Schöber test, sit up test. Multifidus and abdominal muscle thickness were measured by ultrasonographic imaging.

Results/findings: The mean age of Group 1 and 2 were 49.3±10.4, 48.4±9.3 respectively. The duration of pain of Group 1 and 2 were 5.8±4.1, 6.3±3.5 years respectively. 28 of the Pilates group, 25 of the home exercise group patients completed the task. Significant improvement has been observed in all parameters in both groups. Comparing the 2 groups, Pilates exercise was found to be more effective in decreasing pain level and depression; increasing flexibility, endurance, functional level, and quality of life (p<0.05). Although there was a significant increase in muscle thickness in both groups (p˂0.05), pilates group was far much better (p<0,0001).

Discussion and conclusions: Both the pilates exercise and the home exercise program provided significant improvements however pilates exercise group was superior in all parameters in CLBP.


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