Background: Today, chronic low back pain is one of the special challenges in healthcare. There is no unique approach to treat chronic low back pain. A variety of methods are used for the treatment of low back pain, but the effects of these methods have not yet been investigated adequately.
Aim: The aim of this study was to compare the effects of Pilates and McKenzie training on pain and general health of men with chronic low back pain.
Materials and methods: Thirty-six patients with chronic low back pain were chosen voluntarily and assigned to three groups of 12 each: McKenzie group, Pilates group, and control group. The Pilates group participated in 1-h exercise sessions, three sessions a week for 6 weeks. McKenzie group performed workouts 1 h a day for 20 days. The control group underwent no treatment. The general health of all participants was measured by the General Health Questionnaire 28 and pain by the McGill Pain Questionnaire.
Results: After therapeutic exercises, there was no significant difference between Pilates and McKenzie groups in pain relief (P = 0.327). Neither of the two methods was superior over the other for pain relief. However, there was a significant difference in general health indexes between Pilates and McKenzie groups.
Conclusion: Pilates and McKenzie training reduced pain in patients with chronic low back pain, but the Pilates training was more effective to improve general health.
Keywords: Chronic back pain; Mckenzie training; Pilates training; general health; pain.