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Effect of Yoga Vs. Stretching on Chronic Back Pain (YES)

This study has been completed.
National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health (NCCIH)
Information provided by (Responsible Party):
Group Health Cooperative Identifier:
First received: March 13, 2007
Last updated: November 7, 2011
Last verified: November 2011
This study will compare the effectiveness of yoga classes, exercise classes, and a self-care book in the management of pain and function for people with low back pain.It will also for physical, psychological and physiological factors associated with improvement in back pain.

Condition Intervention Phase
Chronic Non-specific Low Back Pain
Behavioral: Yoga
Behavioral: Exercise
Behavioral: Self-care book recommendations
Phase 2

Study Type: Interventional
Study Design: Allocation: Randomized
Intervention Model: Parallel Assignment
Masking: Single Blind (Outcomes Assessor)
Primary Purpose: Treatment
Official Title: Effect of Yoga Vs. Stretching on Chronic Back Pain

Resource links provided by NLM:

Further study details as provided by Group Health Cooperative:

Primary Outcome Measures:
  • Back-related function [ Time Frame: 6 months ]
  • Pain [ Time Frame: 6 months ]

Estimated Enrollment: 210
Study Start Date: March 2007
Study Completion Date: August 2011
Primary Completion Date: August 2009 (Final data collection date for primary outcome measure)
Arms Assigned Interventions
Experimental: 1 Behavioral: Yoga
Yoga for back pain
Active Comparator: 2
Behavioral: Exercise
exercises for back pain
Active Comparator: 3
Self-care book recommendations
Behavioral: Self-care book recommendations
Self-care book for back pain


Ages Eligible for Study:   20 Years to 64 Years   (Adult)
Sexes Eligible for Study:   All
Accepts Healthy Volunteers:   No

Inclusion Criteria:

  • Group Health Cooperative enrollee
  • Uncomplicated low back pain
  • At least moderate pain levels

Exclusion Criteria:

  • Sciatica persisting 3 or more months after physician visit
  • History of cancer (other than nonmelanoma skin cancer)
  • Severe disk problems
  • Unstable medical conditions
  • Back surgery within past 3 years
  • Physically unable to do the yoga or exercise classes and homework
  • Unable to attend classes
  • Currently doing yoga
  • Taken yoga or exercise class for back pain within past year
  • Currently in litigation for back pain
  • Seeking other treatment for back pain
  Contacts and Locations
Choosing to participate in a study is an important personal decision. Talk with your doctor and family members or friends about deciding to join a study. To learn more about this study, you or your doctor may contact the study research staff using the Contacts provided below. For general information, see Learn About Clinical Studies.

Please refer to this study by its identifier: NCT00447668

United States, Washington
Group Health Cooperative
Seattle, Washington, United States, 98101
Sponsors and Collaborators
Group Health Cooperative
National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health (NCCIH)
Principal Investigator: Karen J. Sherman, PhD Group Health Cooperative
  More Information

Publications automatically indexed to this study by Identifier (NCT Number):
Responsible Party: Group Health Cooperative Identifier: NCT00447668     History of Changes
Other Study ID Numbers: U01AT003208 ( US NIH Grant/Contract Award Number )
Study First Received: March 13, 2007
Last Updated: November 7, 2011

Keywords provided by Group Health Cooperative:
Chronic Low Back Pain

Additional relevant MeSH terms:
Back Pain
Low Back Pain
Neurologic Manifestations
Nervous System Diseases
Signs and Symptoms processed this record on May 25, 2017