Ninety percent of all low back pain cases are classified as non-specific low back pain (NSLBP). NSLBP stands as the leading cause of disability and premature retirement worldwide. It is crucial to intervene between the ages of 18-45 years old as NSLBP prevalence increases with age. Providing patients with innovative feasible methods to undertake rehabilitation can enhance their exercise literacy. This 6-week randomized controlled trial evaluated outcomes of pain, disability, adherence, compliance, and lateral abdominal wall muscle thickness between a gamified exercise group and an at-home exercise packet group. Forty participants were allocated into a gamified group or a packet group. Participants completed a 6 week at-home exercise protocol that included the seven core exercises. Weekly hold times were collected with electronic surveys. The gamified group received a leaderboard of the hold times each week. The first visit, 3-week survey, and last visit included questionnaire completion regarding the outcomes. The first and last visit included dynamic ultrasound to measure the lateral abdominal wall during exercise static and starting positions. Disability was significantly lower at 6 weeks compared to baseline in both groups. No significant findings between groups or within groups were found regarding adherence. At 6 weeks, the packet group had a higher % thickness change in the right internal oblique during two exercises compared to the gamified group. The packet group had a higher % thickness change in the left internal oblique during the foot-elevated side plank and dead bug. Disability was significantly decreased in both groups from baseline to 6 weeks. Participants had decreased fear-avoidance beliefs at the end of 6 weeks, suggesting an increased willingness to engage in activity and exercise. The gamified group did not have greater exercise adherence, although they did have 12% higher compliance. Internal oblique % thickness had the greatest change of muscles.


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Graduation Date





Mangum, Colby


Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.)


College of Health Professions and Sciences


Kinesiology and Rehabilitation Sciences

Degree Program



CFE0009712; DP0027819





Release Date

August 2028

Length of Campus-only Access

5 years

Access Status

Doctoral Dissertation (Campus-only Access)

Restricted to the UCF community until August 2028; it will then be open access.