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Table 2 Multifidus activation exercise protocol

From: Optimizing treatment protocols for spinal manipulative therapy: study protocol for a randomized trial

Activity Description Initial dose Goals for progression
Preferential, isometric multifidus activation exercises • Isolated multifidus contraction while prone, seated, standing
• Isolated co-contraction of multifidus and deep abdominals in sitting, standing
5 repetitions, 10-s hold with normal breathing Progress towards 10 repetitions, 10-s hold, perform 2–3× daily
General lumbar extensor and multifidus activation exercises • Quadruped single arm raises 10 lifts, 5-s hold each arm Progress towards 20 lifts, add arm + leg lift
• Side-support exercise 10 repetitions, 5-s hold each side Progress towards 20 repetitions
• Bridging while hook-lying 10 repetitions, 5-s hold Progress towards 20 repetitions
• Prone single leg lift 10 lifts, 5-s hold each leg Progress towards 20 lifts, add arm + leg lift
• Prone trunk lift 10 lifts, 5-s hold Progress towards 20 lifts