Content » Vol 49, Issue 3

Original report

Effect of therapeutic exercises on pregnancy-related low back pain and pelvic girdle pain: Secondary analysis of a randomized controlled trial

Iva Sklempe Kokic, Marina Ivanisevic, Melita Uremovic, Tomislav Kokic, Rado Pisot, Bostjan Simunic
Department of Health Studies, College of Applied Sciences “Lavoslav Ruzicka” in Vukovar, 32000 Vukovar, Croatia. E-mail:
DOI: 10.2340/16501977-2196


Objective: To investigate the effect of a supervised, structured exercise programme on the occurrence and severity of pregnancy-related lumbopelvic pain.
Design: Randomized controlled trial.
Subjects: A total of 45 pregnant women were randomly assigned to 2 groups: an experimental group (n = 20; mean age 32. 8 (standard deviation (SD) 3. 6) years) and a control group (n = 22; mean age 32. 2 years (SD 4. 9)).
Methods: Exercise intervention for the experimental group consisted of aerobic and resistance exercises performed bi-weekly from the date of inclusion into the study until the end of pregnancy, together with at least 30 min of brisk daily walks. A numeric rating scale, Roland-Morris Disability Questionnaire (RMDQ), and Pelvic Girdle Questionnaire (PGQ) were used to measure outcomes. The control group received only standard antenatal care.
Results: There were significant differences between the 2 groups on the numeric rating scale, PGQ and RMDQ scores in the 36th week of pregnancy (p = 0. 017; p = 0. 005; p < 0. 001, respectively) in favour of the experimental group.
Conclusion: The exercise programme had a beneficial effect on the severity of lumbopelvic pain in pregnancy, reducing the intensity of pain and the level of disability experienced as a result.

Lay Abstract

Exercise has beneficial effect on the severity of lumbopelvic pain in pregnancy
In this study we investigated whether exercise in pregnancy lowers the occurence and severity of low back pain and pelvic girdle pain. Our exercise intervention consisted of aerobic exercise on treadmill and resistance exercises which were performed twice per week. Pregnant women from the exercise group had less pain and disability caused by the low back pain and pelvic girdle pain in their final weeks of pregnancy in comparison to pregnant women from the group which did not exercise in pregnancy.


Do you want to comment on this paper? The comments will show up here and if appropriate the comments will also separately be forwarded to the authors. You need to login/create an account to comment on articles. Click here to login/create an account.