The Schroth Method is a conservative exercise approach to the treatment of scoliosis and postural dysfunction first introduced in Germany in the 1920’s by Katharina Schroth. It teaches 3-dimensional correction of the spine and its exercises have been termed PSSE (Physiotherapy Scoliosis Specific Exercises). In Europe, over the past 80 years, the Schroth Method has become the standard non-surgical treatment for scoliosis, though it was not brought to the USA until 2008. It is currently supported across Europe and is gaining a strong reputation in the United States for its effective and positive outcomes.
The Barcelona Scoliosis Physical Therapy School (BSPTS) was founded by Dr. Manuel Rigo in 2009, and is based on the original work of Katharina, and her daughter Christa Lehnert-Schroth. BSPTS teaches the original principles of Schroth, with advanced concepts learned during Dr. Rigo’s years of clinical experience and research within the medical community.
The SEAS Method is another highly respected evidence-based method that began in Italy in the 1960s and was adapted from France’s Lyon Method. S.E.A.S. (the Scientific Approach to Scoliosis) principles are based on a specific form of auto-correction (termed active self-correction) that is taught individually to every patient and then associated with stabilizing exercises, including neuromotor control and proprioceptive training balance. The exercises are easily incorporated into daily living activities. The SEAS approach is also characterized by a cognitive-behavioral approach towards the patient and their family to maximize compliance to treatment. The Lyon Method is one of the oldest methods around that began in France in the 1800’s. The Lyon method uses scoliosis-specific exercise along with the use of a unique brace called the new Lyon ARTbrace (Asymmetrical Rigid Torsion brace). Treatment includes: 3D mobilization of the spine, patient education, focusing on activities of daily living, such as the correct sitting position.
As you can see, the Schroth Method is only one part of a multidisciplinary, collaborative approach to the conservative management of scoliosis that we provide here at ScolioAustin. Our unique blend of Physiotherapeutic Scoliosis Specific Exercise program is a unique blend of 4 scoliosis schools (Germany-Schroth, France-Lyon, Spain-Rigo Concepts and Italy-SEAS) that our therapists have been certified in as Advanced scoliosis specialists. By utilizing the most appropriate parts of each method, we can customize each program according to the needs and goals of the patient.
Generally, the Schroth program is best completed in 3 phases. Each phase progresses at a different pace depending on the skills and needs of each person. It is helpful to have a recent set of Scoliosis Series images prior to starting so that we have a baseline of your spinal shape and an understanding of any underlying issues that might not be easily seen in the clinical evaluation.
The first phase starts with an in-depth assessment of your spinal and postural presentation, flexibility and muscle strength, respiratory function, and balance. During this session, we will review and discuss your X-ray images which help to give you a clearer, visual understanding of what is going on, and most importantly, why it’s happening. This knowledge, along with clinical presentation, will maximize our ability to choose the correct exercises for you and modify your habits, postures and daily activities if necessary.
- Clinical Assessment & Program Development
- Education on Postural alignment
- Pain Reduction
- Introduction to foundational exercises on the floor
- Progressive and integrated exercises seated
- Static balance challenges
- Core stabilization and modification to existing exercise programs outside the clinic
- Dynamic Balance
- Transition to recreational activity
- Option to join group classes with independence in set up and progression through exercises