Preventing Neck & Back Pain in Teleworking Office Workers: a Randomized Controlled Trial

  • End date
    Dec 31, 2028
  • participants needed
  • sponsor
    University Ghent
Updated on 16 March 2021


The purpose of this study is to assess the effect of a general training program and educational session to prevent neck and/or low back pain in desktop workers


After being informed about the study and potential risks, all subjects that met the preset inclusion criteria and gave written informed consent to participate will be randomized into an intervention or control group in a 1:1 ratio. Next, subjects of both groups will undergo baseline testing (online survey). The subjects of the intervention group receive a single educational video (online) and are motivated to follow 2 training sessions of 60 minutes each, during 12 consecutive weeks. Instructions for the specific exercises are provided via an online platform. The subjects of the control group are instructed to maintain their normal working activities and activities of daily life and receive no further intervention. Subjects of both groups are prompted to fill out a weekly online logbook to gather information on their physical activity and neck and/or back complaints. All subjects undergo post-intervention testing at 12 weeks (short term effects), 6 months, and 12 months (long term effects).

Condition Low Back Pain, Lower Back Pain, Back Pain, Chronic Back Pain, Neck Pain, Neck Pain, Pain, Post-Surgical Pain, Pain (Pediatric), Pain, Chronic Back Pain, Post-Surgical Pain, Pain (Pediatric), Lower Back Pain, lumbago, backpain, backache
Treatment Exercise Program
Clinical Study IdentifierNCT04783454
SponsorUniversity Ghent
Last Modified on16 March 2021


Yes No Not Sure

Inclusion Criteria

age between 18-69 years
perform regular desktop work (at least 20 hours/week)
perform desktop work for at least 1 year (employee or student)

Exclusion Criteria

documented structural neck- and/or back pathology (confirmed by medical imaging)
known shoulder or vestibular pathology
whiplash-associated disorders
history of surgery in the neck, shoulder, hip, and/or back area
(history of) chronic pain condition
serious headache
serious cardiovascular/metabolic/systemic/neurological conditions
chronic fatigue syndrome
psychiatric conditions or history of serious depression
serious catastrophizing thoughts
pregnancy or delivery in the past year
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Additional screening procedures may be conducted by the study team before you can be confirmed eligible to participate.

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If you are confirmed eligible after full screening, you will be required to understand and sign the informed consent if you decide to enroll in the study. Once enrolled you may be asked to make scheduled visits over a period of time.

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Complete your scheduled study participation activities and then you are done. You may receive summary of study results if provided by the sponsor.

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