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Yoga for Women With Hyperkyphosis: Results of a Pilot Study

Posted by on Dec 30, 2010

Yoga for Women With Hyperkyphosis: Results of a Pilot Study

Gail A. Greendale, MDAnna McDivit, BSAnnie Carpenter, MSLeanne Seeger, MD and Mei-Hua Huang, DrPH

The authors are with the School of Medicine, University of California at Los Angeles.
Correspondence: Requests for reprints should be sent to Gail A. Greendale, MD, UCLA School of Medicine, Division of Geriatrics, 10945 Le Conte Ave, Suite 2339, Los Angeles, CA 90095-1687 (e-mail:

The thoracic region of the spine is normally kyphotic, or anteriorly concave. Hyperkyphosis, colloquially called “dowager’s hump,” refers to excessive kyphotic curvature; however, there is no criterion standard, nor are there any outcome-based definitions of the condition. A kyphosis angle >=” border=”0″ src=”” /> 40°—the 95th percentile<sup> </sup>value for young adults—is currently used to define hyperkyphosis.<a href=1,2

Hyperkyphosis may be associated with physical and emotional limitations3–11 and may have multiple precipitants.4,12–14 Yoga could be an optimal intervention for hyperkyphosis in that it may improve physical and emotional functioning as well as combat some of the underlying muscular and biomechanical causes. We conducted a single-arm, nonmasked intervention trial to assess the effects on anthropometric and physical function of yoga among women with hyperkyphosis. To continue reading click here.

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