The effects of qigong on neck pain: A systematic review

Complement Ther Clin Pract. 2019 Feb;34:23-29. doi: 10.1016/j.ctcp.2018.10.013. Epub 2018 Oct 25.


Background and purpose: Neck pain is a common musculoskeletal condition that affects a large portion of the population. It is not known if qigong affects neck pain. The purpose of this review is to systematically review the effects of qigong in subjects with neck pain.

Methods: A systematic review of literature indexed in the following databases: PubMed, Medline, CINAHL, Physiotherapy Evidence Database, and SportsDiscus, was conducted and methodologically graded using the Physiotherapy Evidence Database Scale (PEDro).

Results: Five studies satisfied criteria and were included in this review. The majority of included studies found that qigong had a significant effect on neck pain or disability (95% CI). Qigong was not generally more effective than exercise therapy groups.

Conclusion: The findings of this systematic review indicate that qigong might have a beneficial effect in some individuals with neck pain, although not necessarily more effective than therapeutic exercise.

Publication types

  • Systematic Review

MeSH terms

  • Exercise Therapy / methods*
  • Humans
  • Neck Pain / therapy*
  • Patient Satisfaction
  • Physical Therapy Modalities
  • Psychotherapy, Group
  • Qigong / methods*