The effect of a corrective functional exercise program on postural thoracic kyphosis in teenagers: a randomized controlled trial

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Abstract

Objective:

To investigate the effects of a corrective functional exercise program on postural thoracic kyphosis in teenagers in China.

Design:

A single-blind randomized controlled trial including students with a thoracic kyphosis angle (TKA) >40° measured using the SpinalMouse.

Setting:

China Institute of Sport Science and three middle schools in Beijing, China.

Subjects:

A total of 181 subjects were included in this trial; of these, 164 subjects were included in the analyses (intervention group, n = 81; control group, n = 83).

Intervention:

The intervention group received a functional exercise program designed to correct postural thoracic kyphosis, and the control group received an exercise program designed in accordance with the state-regulated curriculum.

Main measures:

The primary outcome variable was TKA. Secondary outcome variables were lumbar lordosis angle (LLA), sacral angle (SA), and incline angle (INA) measured in the upright position; thoracic, lumbar, and sacral spine range of motion (ROM) and INA ROM (change in center of gravity) measured in the forward bending and extended positions; and changes in TKA, LLA, SA, and INA measured during the Matthiass test.

Results:

There were significant differences in pretest and posttest TKA in both groups (intervention group: pretest 47.09 ± 5.45, posttest 38.31 ± 9.18, P < 0.0001; control group: pretest 47.47 ± 6.06, posttest 43.59 ± 7.49, P < 0.0001). After adjustment for gender and pretest values, there were significant differences in posttest TKA, change in SA, and thoracic ROM in the intervention group compared to the control group (P < 0.05).

Conclusion:

The corrective functional exercise program designed for this study improved exaggerated thoracic kyphosis in teenagers.

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