Hello my friends,
Did you know that back pain is the most common kind of pain suffered here in America?
According to the American Pain Foundation, “Back pain is the leading cause of disability in Americans under 45 year old. More than 26 million Americans between the ages of 20-64 experience frequent back pain.”
My previous post brought a recent publication to your attention. On August 19, 2008, the British Medical Journal published research that showed long-term benefits of Alexander lessons for the
relief of back pain, that have been shown to be effective a year later.
Given how many people suffer from back pain, is it any wonder that articles referencing the study have sprouted like mushrooms, overnight? Google cited 88 articles in 48 hours since the study was released.
One of my colleagues, Debby Jay*, recently sent out highlights of a couple of these articles. Thanks very much, Debby, for sharing this:
From PULSE (a resource for MD’s in England):
20 Aug 08 By Nigel Praities
Alexander technique provides significant benefit over usual care for
patients with chronic low back pain, say the authors of the first long-term UK trial …
In a landmark trial likely to be considered in the National Institute of
Clinical Health Excellence (NICE) guidelines for back pain due for release next year, 24 sessions of Alexander technique resulted in a 86% reduction in days in pain and a 42% reduction in disability compared with usual care after one year …
Professor Paul Little, lead author and professor of primary care research,
said his study showed Alexander technique was a low-cost alternative to
currently available care…
By Caroline Wilbert WebMD Health News
Aug. 19, 2008 — The Alexander technique … is more effective at reducing
back pain than exercise alone or massage therapy, according to a new study.
The study, published in the journal BMJ, tested different back pain
treatments using patients from 64 general practices in England. A total of
579 patients with chronic pain or recurrent low back pain participated; 144
were given “normal care,” 147 had massages, 144 took six Alexander technique lessons, and 144 took 24 Alexander technique lessons. Half of each group was also prescribed an aerobic exercise plan, primarily walking.
The patients who saw the biggest improvement were the ones who took the Alexander lessons and also were prescribed an exercise plan. The improvements still held after one year, while massage’s benefits waned after three months.
Click here to read the published report. A free PDF copy of the print version is also available.
*Debby Jay is an AmSAT Certified Alexander Technique teacher in Valley Village, CA.