Active stretching for lower extremity muscle tightness in pediatric patients with lumbar spondylolysis

Background: It was reported that hamstring muscle tightness may increase mechanical loading on the lumbar spine. Therefore, we attempt to decrease tightness in the leg muscles in pediatric patients. Methods: Forty-six pediatric patients with spondylolysis underwent rehabilitation. We applied active stretching to the hamstrings, quadriceps, and triceps surae. Tightness in each muscle was graded as good, fair, or poor. We educated each patient on how to perform active stretching at home. They were re-evaluated for muscle tightness 2 months later. Results: Tightness at baseline and after 2 months was as follows: for the hamstrings, good in 3 patients, fair in 9, and poor in 34 and significant improved after 2 months (p<0.05), with improvement by least 1 grade seen in 86% of patients with fair or poor at baseline; for the quadriceps, 7, 3, and 30 patients had good, fair and poor, with significant improvements in 72% (p<0.05). For the triceps surae, 6, 3 and 10 patients had good, fair and poor, which improved significantly (p<0.05). Conclusion: Home-based active stretching was effective for relieving muscle tightness in the leg in a pediatric population. Adolescent athletes should perform such exercise to maintain flexibility and prevent lumbar disorders. J. Med. Invest. 64: 136-139, February, 2017 

Autor / Fonte:Masahiro Sato, Yasuyoshi Mase, Koichi Sairyo Journal of Medical Investigation: JMI 2017, 64 (1.2): 136-139