Low back pain and disability in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu
Brazilian jiu-jitsu is a self-defence martial art based on the principle of defeating the adversary: subjugating them by using their own force. The practice of jiu-jitsu has grown rapidly over the past 10–15 years in Brazil, mainly due to the popularity of mixed martial arts (MMA). Despite its rapid growth, there are few studies regarding injuries in jiu-jitsu. Thus, the purpose of this study was to identify the prevalence of LBP and functional disabilities for Brazilian jiu-jitsu athletes.
This cross-sectional study was performed at different jiu-jitsu training sites, using a two-group, observational design. We visited 16 training sites in a total of 23 located in the city of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. The sample consisted of Brazilian jiu-jitsu athletes of different levels, ranging from white to black belts. These athletes were divided into two categories according to the level of competition: recreational and professional. Exclusion criteria included: history of LBP before the practice of jiu-jitsu, diagnosis of scoliosis, congenital spinal disorders, prior lumbar surgery, spondylolisthesis, a history of severe trauma, red ﬂags conditions. All participants completed both a general questionnaire concerning demographic characteristics and sport activity practice (length of practice, frequency, duration of training, belt grade and history of back pain) and the Quebec Back Pain Disability Scale (QBPDS).
We evaluated 72 out of 80 athletes (being 36 professionals and 36 recreational). Chronic low back pain was present in 58 (80.6%) athletes of the total group [in 32 (88.9%) professional and 26 (72.2%) recreational athletes]. In the professional jiu-jitsu group, the the median score in the QBPDS was higher when compared to the recreational group. After logistic regression analysis considering age and training variables (experience, frequency, training session duration and level of practice) we observed that professionals athletes had a marginally significant increase in the risk of developing low back pain when compared with recreational athletes. To the best of our knowledge, this was the first study to investigate CLBP in jiu-jitsu athletes.
> From: Reis et al., Phys Ther Sport 16 (2016) 340-343. All rights reserved to Elsevier Ltd. Click here for the Pubmed summary.