Does Aquatic Based Exercise Improve Quality of Life in Obese Low Back Pain Population?
Back pain is one of the most common reasons for work stress, poor health, sickness and reducing quality of life. While obesity is a growing public health concern, it was proved that obesity is a risk factor for low-back pain. Whereas obese individuals with low-back pain cannot handle weight load on the spine in most exercises, they can easily carry out exercises in water. The aim of this study was to explore the effects of aquatic exercise on quality of life among individuals with low-back pain. A total of 39 women with BMI>27 kg.m-2 who had non-specific chronic low-back pain were purposively selected for this study. They were randomly assigned in two groups; exercising (N=19, 37.85±5.83 years with 32.97±4.84kg.m-2) and control group (N=20, 40.8±5.25 years with 31.87±4.79 kg.m-2). The exercising group carried out aquatic exercise, twice per week, 60 minutes per session, for 12 weeks. Quality of life was measured using SF-36v2 questionnaire with eight domains; physical functioning, role-physical, bodily pain, general health, vitality, social functioning, role-emotional and mental health. The findings showed a significant (p≥0.001) improvement in quality of life in exercising group after 12 weeks. The significant improvement was found on 7 domains of the SF-36v2 in exercising group after the aquatic exercise intervention program while there was no significant effect on mental health (p=0.051). In the control group, a negative changes in mean difference (-3.02) was observed in mental health domain, while it was (15.32) for exercising group. There was no significant change in BMI in both groups, also. In conclusion, a 12-week aquatic exercise is an appropriate intervention program to improve overall quality of life among obese women who suffer from non-significant chronic low- back pain.
Keywords - Aquatic Exercise, Quality of Life, Obesity, Low Back Pain.