ISSN: 0970-938X (Print) | 0976-1683 (Electronic)

Biomedical Research

An International Journal of Medical Sciences


The relationship between postural deviations and body mass index among university students.

The purpose of this study was to determine the relationship between postural deviations and body mass index (BMI) among University of Venda students. This cross-sectional survey involved 100 purposively selected students in the Centre for Biokinetics, Recreation and Sports Science, University of Venda, South Africa. Height and weight were measured and BMI determined. The lateral, anterior and posterior views of postural deviations (kyphosis, scoliosis, and lordosis) were assessed. The mean age of the participants was 22±2.4 years. Majority (34%) of the participants had kyphosis, lordosis (22%) and scoliosis (3%). There was a significant difference between females and males with kyphosis and lordosis (X2= 11.222, p= 0.001) and (X2= 5.138, p= 0.023), respectively. There was no significant relationship between BMI and kyphosis and scoliosis (X2= 6.036, p=0.196) and (X2= 2.149, p= 0.708), respectively. However, there was significant difference between BMI and lordosis (X2=19.193, p=0.001). The prevalence of postural deviations was in the order of kyphosis>lordosis> scoliosis; with kyphosis being the most common type of postural deviation among the University of Venda students. There is no significant relationship between BMI and kyphosis as well as scoliosis. However, the inverse relationship between BMI and lordosis suggests increasing risk of developing lordosis as BMI increases. There is a significant gender difference in kyphosis and lordosis with the female students having higher prevalence of these postural deviations compared to the males. There is need to educate as well as design intervention measures to correct bad posture among the students as this could cause irreversible musculoskeletal, neurological and pathological damage in future.

Author(s): Malepe MM, Goon DT, Anyanwu FC Amusa LO
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