Exercise therapy reduces pain in musculoskeletal disorders

Exercise therapy reduces pain in musculoskeletal disorders

Back Pain & Co: Exercise Therapy Helps

Various scientific studies have shown that exercise not only prevents diseases, but can also reduce pain, for example in the case of musculoskeletal disorders. But researchers are now reporting that the effect of exercise training and placebo treatment is equally great.

Persistent chronic pain has many negative consequences, often involving physical restraint. But exercise is essential despite the pain, experts say. So-called exercise therapy is often recommended here. But how does this treatment relieve pain?

pain intensity decreases

according to recent Message is Prof. Dr. Daniel Bellavi from the University of Health in Bochum, an Australian research team, along with scientist Dr. Clint Miller studies the effectiveness of exercise therapy for musculoskeletal disorders.

Conclusion of their literature study: Although exercise training reduces pain intensity in musculoskeletal disorders better than standard medical care, there are not yet sufficient studies that separate effectiveness from placebo effect.

The scientists’ results were published in the journal “Sports Medicine“be released.

Summarizing and comparing findings from studies

Musculoskeletal disorders, such as back pain or fibromyalgia, have one main symptom in common: pain. Exercise therapy is often recommended for this.

However, it is not yet clear to what extent the success of therapy is due to factors such as: placebo Or natural improvement may be determined during the course of the disease. The placebo effect is the phenomenon of an effect caused by the administration of pills without an active ingredient or so-called spurious treatments.

Therefore, the research team around Prof. Dr. Daniel Bellavi, Professor of Physiotherapy at the University of Health in Bochum and Dr. Clint Miller, lecturer at the Institute for Physical Activity and Nutrition at Deakin University in Melbourne, Australia, takes a closer look at the state of the study on the topic of exercise therapy for pain.

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Experts have summarized and compared the findings of 79 individual studies in one systematic review.

equally good effect

“According to our results, the effect of exercise training and placebo treatment is equally great. However, the evidence base is not yet as developed as it would be,” said physiotherapy scientist Prof. Dr. Daniel Belavi.

According to the information, the research group received only four studies that compared the use of exercise therapy and placebo.

Clint Miller said, “We know from other studies that the ritual of going to a physical therapist for treatment, the patient’s past experience and a whole host of other factors can affect how much a person benefits from this treatment. “

“It is important for us to emphasize that exercise therapy and related factors of treatment are still more effective than standard medical care. It just needs to be better researched on what effectiveness is based on,” Miller it is said.

bridging the knowledge gap

“This knowledge gap, which we identified in our study, should be closed as a matter of urgency, as the question is of fundamental importance. We know that exercise has a positive effect on many diseases,” says Belavi. .

“It is therefore important to know whether our results were valid in further studies and, if so, how movement training measures success. With this information, we can better control other treatments as well and maximize patient effectiveness.” You can use them in a customized way to help you achieve the success possible.”

According to experts, it will be important to always compare three options in future studies on musculoskeletal disorders: exercise therapy, placebo therapy and no therapy. In the end, this is the only way to determine how much effect each option has on pain relief. (advertisement)

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Author and source information

This text complies with the requirements of specialist medical literature, medical guidelines and current studies and has been checked by medical professionals.


  • University of Health: How does exercise training relieve pain?, (Access: 09/01/2021), health college
  • Clint T. Miller, Patrick J. Owen, Christian A. Than, Jake Ball, Kate Sadler, Alessandro Piedmonte, Fabrizio Benedetti and Daniel L. Bellavi: Attempts to separate placebo effects from exercise in chronic pain: a systematic review and meta-analysis; In: Sports Medicine, (veröffentlicht: 27.08.2021), Sports Medicine

Important Articles:
This article is for general guidance only and is not to be used for self-diagnosis or self-treatment. He cannot take the place of visiting the doctor.

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