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J Electromyogr Kinesiol. 2013 Dec;23(6):1311-6. doi: 10.1016/j.jelekin.2013.07.004. Epub 2013 Aug 6.

Comparison of erector spinae and hamstring muscle activities and lumbar motion during standing knee flexion in subjects with and without lumbar extension rotation syndrome.

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  • 1Department of Physical Therapy, Graduate School, Yonsei University, Wonju, South Korea. Electronic address:


The aim of this study was to compare the activity of the erector spinae (ES) and hamstring muscles and the amount and onset of lumbar motion during standing knee flexion between individuals with and without lumbar extension rotation syndrome. Sixteen subjects with lumbar extension rotation syndrome (10 males, 6 females) and 14 healthy subjects (8 males, 6 females) participated in this study. During the standing knee flexion, surface electromyography (EMG) was used to measure muscle activity, and surface EMG electrodes were attached to both the ES and hamstring (medial and lateral) muscles. A three-dimensional motion analysis system was used to measure kinematic data of the lumbar spine. An independent-t test was conducted for the statistical analysis. The group suffering from lumbar extension rotation syndrome exhibited asymmetric muscle activation of the ES and decreased hamstring activity. Additionally, the group with lumbar extension rotation syndrome showed greater and earlier lumbar extension and rotation during standing knee flexion compared to the control group. These data suggest that asymmetric ES muscle activation and a greater amount of and earlier lumbar motion in the sagittal and transverse plane during standing knee flexion may be an important factor contributing to low back pain.

Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.


Asymmetry; Electromyography; Erector spinae; Low back pain; Lumbar motion

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