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Am J Sports Med. 2000 Sep-Oct;28(5):687-94.

Open versus closed kinetic chain exercises for patellofemoral pain. A prospective, randomized study.

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Faculty of Medicine, Department of Physical Therapy, University of Ghent, Belgium.


The goal of this prospective study was to evaluate the efficacy of open versus closed kinetic chain exercises in the nonoperative management of patellofemoral pain. Sixty patients were randomized into a 5-week program that consisted of only closed kinetic chain exercises or only open kinetic chain exercises. Muscle characteristics, subjective symptoms, and functional performance were evaluated in this study at the time of the initial physical examination, at the end of the treatment period, and 3 months later. Both groups experienced a statistically significant decrease in pain and an increase in functional performance. This study shows that both open and closed kinetic chain exercise programs lead to an improved subjective and clinical outcome in patients with anterior knee pain. The few significantly better functional results for some of the tested parameters in the closed kinetic chain group suggest that this type of treatment is a little more effective than the open kinetic chain program in the treatment of these patients.

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