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Differentiation between MedX low back machine and other commercially available “low back exercise machines”

Effect of Resistance Training on Lumbar Extension Strength

American Journal of Sports Medicine
1989 Volume 17, Number 5

Michael L. Pollock, PhD, Scott H. Leggett, MS, James E. Graves, PhD, Arthur Jones, Michael Fulton MD, and Joe Cirulli

Study Outcomes & Clinical Relevance:

This study demonstrates that healthy normal individuals show a significant increase in lumbar extension strength when these muscles are effectively isolated and trained. The magnitude of strength gained over the 10 week period is much greater than strength increases found with the average muscle group within the same period, and indicates that the lumbar extensor muscles were in a deconditioned state prior to training. In addition, 10 of the 15 subjects that trained had reported using the Nautilus low back machine on a regular basis prior to the study period. This supports the concept that commercially-available “low back” machines do not isolate the lumbar muscles and that the lumbar extensor muscles must be effectively isolated through pelvic stabilization in order to elicit a training response from progressive resistance exercise.

Pelvic Stabilization During Resistance Training: Its Effect on the Development of Lumbar Extension Strength

Archives of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation
1994 Volume 75

James, E. Graves, PhD, Michael L. Pollock, PhD, Scott Leggett, MS, Dan Foster, Dina C. Webb, PT, Jan Matkozich, David M. Carpenter, MS, Joseph Cirulli

Study Outcomes & Clinical Relevance:

The “No Stabilization” and the “Stabilization” groups showed significant and similar increases in the weight load for training. However, the posttraining isometric torque values describing isolated lumbar extension strength improved only for the “Stabilization” group. Therefore, pelvic stabilization is required to effectively train the lumbar extensor muscles. The increased load for the “No Stabilization” group is attributed to increases in strength of the hamstring and buttock muscles.

Comparison of Two Restraint Systems for Pelvic Stabilization during Isometric Lumbar Extension Strength Testing

Journal of Orthopedic & Sports Physical Therapy
January 1992 Volume 15, Number 1

James E. Graves, PhD, Cecily K. Fix, MS, Michael L. Pollock, PhD, Scott H. Leggett, MS, Dan N. Foster, MS, David M. Carpenter, MS

Study Outcomes & Clinical Relevance:

The researchers examined the difference in two different stabilization methods (knee and foot restraints). Due to the differences in results, standardization of the restraint system used is important for comparative purposes.

Muscle Comparison of MedX Lumbar Extension To a 45-Degree Roman Chair

Abstract Presentation Columbia, Missouri
October 24, 1996

Laura L. Vie, MAEd, Thomas Highland, MD, Thomas E. Dreisinger, PhD

Study Outcomes & Clinical Relevance:

The Roman Chair uses the same muscles as the MedX, but to a lesser degree. Therefore, both machines are appropriate for specific training of the lumbar extensors. However, when available, MedX is still the preferred exercise because of the greater lumbar activation.

The Effect of Lumbar Extension Training With and Without Pelvic Stabilisation on Low Back Pain and Lumbar Extension Strength

Journal of Bone and Joint Surgery - British Volume 2010 Volume 92-B, Issue 235

D Smith, G Bissell, S Bruce-Low, and C Wright
Manchester Metropolitan University
ProPhysio UK
Southampton Solent University
University of Chester, UK

Study Outcomes & Clinical Relevance:

Isolated lumbar extension exercise is very effective in reducing LBP in chronic patients. However, when the pelvis is not stabilised, otherwise identical exercises appear ineffective in reducing LBP.