Background: Wearing the headscarf is a part of an essential religious practice by females in Islamic cultures. Regular wear of the headscarf might have an influence on cervical proprioception and range of motion (ROM). The cervical spine is unique in providing multidirectional movement as well as providing the sense of awareness of movement of the head and neck in space. Impairments in cervical mobility and proprioception have been reported in subjects with whiplash-associated disorder as well as subjects having neck pain. Objectives: 1) To determine the effects of wearing the headscarf on cervical spine ROM and joint position error (JPE), 2) To analyze the influence of age at onset of wearing the headscarf and duration of hours per day wearing the headscarf on cervical ROM and JPE. Methods: Fifty-two females with mean age of 28.1±3.1 years were divided into two groups: Headscarf group (n=26) and control group (n=26). Cervical range of motion (CROM) device was used to measure cervical mobility in a seated position for flexion, extension, right lateral flexion, left lateral flexion, right rotation and left rotation. JPE was measured using the head-mounted laser method. Results: The headscarf group reported a significant limitation in cervical ROM in all six directions. JPE test revealed no significant difference between groups. Moreover, females in the headscarf group who wore the headscarf for more than 6 hours per day had significantly less left rotation compared to those who wear it for less than or equal to 6 hours (71.3±2.1 vs. 64.5±2.1, η2=2.2; p=0.045). Additionally, there was significantly more JPE when relocating from flexion (5.1±0.6 vs. 8.0±1.0, η2=1.5; p=0.048) compared to those who wear the headscarf for less than or equal to 6 hours. Conclusion: Wearing of the headscarf may result in cervical ROM limitation. The duration of wearing the headscarf daily is a key factor to limited cervical ROM an increase in cervical JPE. Key words: Cervical spine, range of motion, neck pain, mobility, proprioception, movement, joint position error test, headdress, headscarf, and Hijab.

LLU Discipline

Physical Therapy


Physical Therapy


School of Allied Health Professions

First Advisor

Bains, Gurinder

Second Advisor

Daher, Noha S.

Third Advisor

Johnson, Eric

Fourth Advisor

Lohman, Everett B.

Degree Name

Doctor of Science (DSc)

Degree Level


Year Degree Awarded


Date (Title Page)




Library of Congress/MESH Subject Headings

Range of Motion; Cervical Vertebrae; Neck Pain; Women in Islam; Islam - Customs and practices;

Subject - Local

Headscarf; Hijab; Proprioception; Joint Position Error Test; Mobility



Page Count


Digital Format


Digital Publisher

Loma Linda University Libraries

Usage Rights

This title appears here courtesy of the author, who has granted Loma Linda University a limited, non-exclusive right to make this publication available to the public. The author retains all other copyrights.


Loma Linda University Electronic Theses and Dissertations

Collection Website



Loma Linda University. Del E. Webb Memorial Library. University Archives