About the Study

This study is being conducted in conjunction with the School of Physical Therapy at the University of Saskatchewan (U of S) and is led by principal investigator Stephan Milosavljevic.  

Chronic low back pain is a highly prevalent and expensive health issue. Eighty percent of the population will describe being afflicted with it sometime in their life and about 20 percent will develop chronic lower back pain contributing disproportionally to Canada’s $12-billion in health-related costs for treatment.

“Low back pain is the most prevalent and most costly musculoskeletal disorder for society,” said Dr. Stephan Milosavljevic, professor and director of the U of S School of Physical Therapy and principal investigator on a project funded by the Saskatchewan Health Research Foundation. “At any given time in Saskatchewan, it is estimated that approximately 28 out of every 100 people are experiencing low back pain.”

Fortunately, exercise can play a key role in health recovery and pain management, with pedometer-driven walking particularly effective in the management of chronic health conditions. However, so far little research has specifically investigated the use of walking as a health strategy for chronic low back pain. The clinical trial developed by a team of researchers from the School of Physical Therapy and Canadian Centre for Health and Safety in Agriculture is designed to test the effectiveness of a 12-week walking program compared to education-only to treat chronic low back pain.

“There is compelling evidence that exercise is an effective strategy for managing many chronic health conditions,” said Milosavljevic. “Although it has yet to be determined if any type of physical activity is more beneficial than another for managing chronic disorders, it must be something people can do consistently. Walking is a fundamental human activity, an effective form of exercise, and has been found to be of tremendous benefit to those with general musculoskeletal disorders.”

How to get Involved

Recruitment has closed for this study, and we are currently completing the intervention so that we can analyze the data.  We anticipate reporting our findings in 2018, so check back for updates!