Date of Award


Document Type

Scholarly Project

Degree Name

Master of Physical Therapy (MPT)


Physical Therapy

First Advisor

Beverly Johnson


Lumbar Vertebrae


The purpose of this study is to compare the reliability, validity, and ease of administration for various noninvasive tools used for measuring flexion of the lumbar spine. A synopsis of several clinical techniques is offered: Schober's technique, modified Schober, modified modified Schober, fingertip to floor, modified fingertip to floor, goniometer, single inclinometer, double inclinometer, and flexicurves. The results were variable for the different techniques with each having its own inherent advantages and disadvantages. Ultimately, the clinician can weigh the information presented when choosing a technique. It appears that a true gold standard has yet to be described. Therefore, it is the intention of this review to stimulate further research which will allow for greater accuracy in the measurements of flexion in the lumbar spine.