There is limited information in the literature related to the lower back loading in patients with LBP, particularly those with non-chronic LBP. Toward addressing such a research gap, a case-control study was conducted to explore the differences in lower back mechanical loads between a group of females (n=19) with non-chronic, non-specific LBP and a group of asymptomatic females (n=19). The differences in lower back mechanical loads were determined when participants completed one symmetric lowering and lifting of a 4.5 kg load at their preferred cadence. The axial, shearing, and moment components of task demand at the time of peak moment component as well as measures of peak trunk kinematics were analyzed. Patient vs. asymptomatic group performed the task with smaller peak thoracic rotation and peak lumbar flexion. While no differences in the moment component of task demand on the lower back between the patients and controls were found, the shearing (40–50 age group) and axial components of task demand were, respectively, larger and smaller in patients vs. controls. Whether alterations in lower back loads in patients with non-chronic LBP are in response to pain or preceded the pain, the long-term exposure to abnormal lower back mechanics may adversely affect spinal structure and increase the likelihood of further injury or pain. Therefore, the underlying reason(s) as well as the potential consequence(s) of such altered lower back mechanics in patients with non-chronic LBP should to be further investigated.

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Published in Journal of Biomechanics, v. 70, p. 255-261.

© 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved

This manuscript version is made available under the CC‐BY‐NC‐ND 4.0 license https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/.

The document available for download is the author's post-peer-review final draft of the article.

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This work was supported in part by the National Center for Research Resources and the National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences [UL1TR000117] as well as an award (R21OH010195) from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.