I have chronic lower back pain – which type of exercise is the best for relieving my pain?

As Physiotherapists, one of the most common complaints our clients will seek treatment for is chronic lower back pain which is pain that either has lasted longer than a few months without settling; or repeat recurrences of the same lower back pain over a prolonged period of time.

There is lots of evidence that exercise is one of the best treatments in the management of chronic lower back pain.   Physiotherapists are the specialists in the field of exercise prescription and management of musculoskeletal aches and pains.  We are well trained in the prescription of various types of exercise therapy, so we are always looking for evidence of what exactly is the BEST type of exercise for the management of this chronic pain.

So…..what is the answer?

New research recently published in the Journal of Physiotherapy (Oct, 2021) by the Australian Physiotherapy Association, looked at nearly 250 clinical trials and came up with the best evidence to date of which types of exercise are the most effective for the management of chronic low back pain.

 Not surprisingly, their research concluded that MOST exercise types were more effective than no treatment, yet there were a few types that seem to be more effective than others in managing pain and disability.

But the exercise type which showed the best improvement was (drum roll please)…..


That’s right – a customised and progressive Pilates programme incorporating over 20 hours of this type of exercise over a minimum of  8 weeks showed the most improvement in pain and disability for people suffering from chronic lower back pain. 

It’s 2022 and it’s time to get Serious….. If you have chronic lower back pain, the evidence is clear that targeted lower back strengthening via a Pilates programme will have a significantly positive impact on your pain.

At Midland Physiotherapy, all of our Studio Pilates Physiotherapists have done extensive postgraduate training in the delivery of this type of exercise.  Call the clinic on (08) 9274 1482 to get started on the road to recovery.

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Midland Physio has been providing leading physiotherapy and allied health care services in Perth since 2002.