RESEARCH: Chiropractic And Exercise Together. More Beneficial?

Tuesday, October 21st, 2014
Oh I love this one! This one was a RANDOMIZED, CONTROLLED TRIAL. It was published in a peer-reviewed journal called SPINE ( Now that sounds like a chiropractic journal, right? Well, it’s not. It’s orthopedic surgeons, neurologists, and others that live in that world. What I’m saying is that this research can be depended on. It’s solid.

Why They Did It
It has been common knowledge for some time now that low grade exercises and stretching can help one in the process of overcoming low back pain. Years ago, the recommendation was to go home and lay down. Plenty of bed rest. That’s not the case anymore. 

There have been several studies, which I share weekly here, that have show how effective spinal manipulation, spinal mobilization, chiropractic adjustments are for low back pain for both ACUTE and CHRONIC conditions. 

So, what would be the cumulative effect from the use of both in patients with low back pain?

How They Did It?

  • They were separated into groups: Manual Therapy group and Exercise group.
  • They took 49 patients having chronic low back pain and/or pain into the leg.
  • They were of the ages 20-60 years old
  • They underwent 16 treatments over eight weeks
  • Each treatment in the Manual Therapy group lasted approximately 45 minutes and consisted of manual adjustments as well as 11 exercises targeting flexibility, strength, and coordination
  • Each treatment in the Exercise Therapy group lasted 45 minutes with a 35-minute focus on the torso, trunk, and legs followed by  a 10 minute exercise bicycle cool-down
  • Their progress was measured before treatment, immediately after treatment, at 4 weeks, 6 months, and at one year after treatment

What Did They Find?

  • Both groups showed improvement
  • The MANUAL-THERAPY GROUP had greater, more significant improvement over the Exercise Therapy group in ALL outcome assessment reports at ALL points in the follow-ups. 
  • Pain in the Manual Therapy group reduced DOUBLE that of the Exercise Therapy group. 
  • The Manual-Therapy group was 40% more likely to return to work after treatment than the Exercise Therapy group patients. 
  • At the one year follow-up, there was only a 19% instance of the Manual Therapy group being sick-listed compared to 59% in the Exercise Therapy group. 

Wrap Up
WOW! What a difference. This shows definitively that exercise is most certainly beneficial but in conjunction with manual therapy, it doesn’t hold a candle. That’s impressive

It’s POWERFUL! Now go tell someone!

The research paper was written by:
Aure OF, Nilsen JH, Vasseljen O. Manual therapy and exercise therapy in patients with chronic low back pain: A randomized, controlled trial with 1-year follow-up. Spine 2003:28(6), pp. 525-532.

This blog was based on an article in Dynamic Chiropractic and can be found here:

Just another reason to call a chiropractor TODAY!

Research and clinical experience shows that, in about 80%-90% of headaches, neck, and back pain, in comparison to the traditional medical model, patients get good or excellent results with Chiropractic. Chiropractic care is safe, more cost-effective, it decreases your chances of having surgery, and it reduces your chances of becoming disabled.  We do this conservatively and non-surgically. In addition, we can do it with minimal time requirements and minimal hassle on the part of the patient. And, if the patient develops a “preventative” mindset going forward from initial recovery, we can likely keep it that way while raising your general, overall level of health!  

Please feel free to leave a comment and tell me your thoughts. I’d love to hear what you think. 

And….SHARE, SHARE, SHARE!!   We cannot make a difference without your help.

Till next time……

The Amarillo Chiropractor Blog is written by Dr. Jeff Williams.

Amarillo TX Amarillo Pain & Accident Chiropractic Clinic provides customized chiropractic care to the Amarillo, Canyon, Pampa, Happy, White Deer, Dumas, Groom, Conway, Panhandle, Claude, Clarendon, Borger, Tulia, Hereford, Fritch, Bushland, and Vega communities. Visit our main website at for customized Chiropractic in Amarillo TX.

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by Jeff S. Williams, D.C.
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