Katharina Schroth

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Katharina Schroth (née Bauer; * February 22, 1894 in Dresden ; † February 19, 1985 in Bad Sobernheim ) was a business school teacher who suffered from scoliosis . She tried to treat this curvature of the spine in herself and developed a new concept of physiotherapy, the three-dimensional scoliosis treatment according to Katharina Schroth , which was later presented in detail by her daughter, Christa Lehnert-Schroth, in her book of the same name. With this treatment method, Katharina Schroth introduced new treatment elements in scoliosis therapy. What was new was on the one hand the so-called angle of rotation breathing as an amplifier for the spinal column correction via the ribs, on the other hand the aim of intervening corrective in the posture regulation via the posture sensation.


In 1921 Katharina Schroth founded her first small institute in Meißen , which essentially consisted of a barrack to accommodate the patients on the large property of the Grundmann family in Boselweg. The exercises took place outdoors on the large lawn in the idyllic garden.

Her first booklet appeared in 1924 with the title The Breathing Cure , further publications followed, which soon made the small institute known nationwide. As early as the late 1920s, patients from surrounding countries (Switzerland and Italy) were treated in Meissen with the help of their husband, Franz Schroth.

The treatment of severely stunted patients, which lasted several months, was continued in Meissen during the war years. At the beginning of the Soviet occupation the "famine years" began. Katharina Schroth and her family were supported by the sale of watercolors they had painted themselves and also by donations from foreign patients and were thus initially able to continue the treatment in Meißen until the institute was closed by the authorities of the GDR. The family was relocated to Bad Gottleuba before Katharina Schroth fled to the west with her daughter. In 1969, Katharina Schroth was awarded the Federal Cross of Merit for her life's work .

Katharina Schroth herself worked in the sanatorium until the mid-1970s. However, therapists from abroad have also been trained. At the end of the 1970s, Katharina Schroth left the treatment entirely in the hands of her daughter, who was meanwhile also supported by her second husband, Adalbert Lehnert.

The three- dimensional scoliosis therapy was further developed by Christa Schroth and documented in detail in the publication Three-Dimensional Scoliosis Treatment - Respiratory Orthopedic System Schroth (see web links ).

A permanent exhibition is dedicated to Katharina Schroth in the town's local museum.


Although the claim is made that Schroth therapy is practiced worldwide, the ASKLEPIOS Katharina Schroth Clinic Bad Sobernheim is apparently the only clinical location. A list of Schroth therapists, which should also be available worldwide, is also not publicly available, but is only sent on request. Studies on the effectiveness of the method that meet scientific standards are hardly available. In 2014 the Main Association of Austrian Social Insurance Institutions published a report in which a brief assessment of the literature was created. Since there are hardly any randomized controlled studies with appropriate scientific evidence and no fewer than 9 of the 14 studies from the literature search were written by one or more authors who are themselves employed in the Bad Sobernheim Rehabilitation Clinic, the "best available evidence" method (according to Sackett). With the work of Romano only a single systematic review article (Cochrane) could be found. In a nutshell, Romano's result is that there is only "little evidence" for Schroth therapy. There seems to be no evidence at all for the decisive finding of a long-term benefit.

In addition, Romano generally sums up that the use of scoliosis-specific exercises (SSE) is controversial. According to Romano, the therapeutic studies examined by him - including the Schroth therapy - lead overall to the summary report statement of "low evidence". Choudhry et al. conclude that "the evidence (from conservative treatments) is generally weak on ... results on long-term benefit". They also point out that - unlike in Central Europe - in the USA physiotherapy is excluded as part of scoliosis management. There is only scientifically sound data on their effectiveness for braces and surgical corrections.

It should be noted that two of the three works by H.-R. White, who was also working in the clinic in Sobernheim at the time of writing. The stated publication from 2006 describes a study of 18 patients and an equally large control group. Each (!) 13 of these patients wore a support corset. The study itself points out that no information can be given about the long-term effects. Such a study does not meet even low scientific standards.

See also

  • Not to be confused: the Schroth cure is an alleged natural healing process with drinking and dry days, which goes back to the carter Johann Schroth (1798–1856).


  • C. Lehnert-Schroth: Three-dimensional scoliosis treatment. 6th edition. Urban & Fischer, Stuttgart 2000 ( limited preview in the Google book search).
  • HR Weiss: Best Practice in Conservative Scoliosis Care. 3rd edition. Pflaum, Munich 2010.
  • HR Weiss, R. Klein: Improving excellence in scoliosis rehabilitation: a controlled study of matched pairs. In: Pediatric rehabilitation. 9 (3), Jul-Sep 2006, pp. 190-200. doi: 10.1080 / 13638490500079583 . PMID 17050397 .

Web links

  • How it all began on the website "Three-dimensional scoliosis treatment according to Katharina Schroth" of the daughter Christa Lehnert-Schroth

Individual evidence

  1. ^ HR Weiss: Origin and development of the three-dimensional scoliosis treatment according to Katharina Schroth. In: Zichner, Rauschmann, Thomann: History of conservative procedures on the locomotor organs . Steinkopff Verlag, Darmstadt 2001.
  2. K. Schroth: The respiratory treatment. Zimmermann Verlag, Chemnitz, 1924.
  3. K. Schroth: Dangers in the treatment of lateral curvature of the spine. Zimmermann Verlag, Chemnitz 1929.
  4. K. Schroth: Treatment of scoliosis (backbone curvature) by respiratory orthopedics. In: The natural doctor. 1931, pp. 11-15.
  5. K. Schroth: How do we help those with curved backbones? In: Obererzgebirgische Zeitung. 143, June 25, 1935.
  6. a b ASKLEPIOS Katharina Schroth Clinic Bad Sobernheim: Settled Schroth therapists. In order to optimize the post-inpatient treatment of our patients, we train Schroth outpatient therapists worldwide. In: www.asklepios.com. Retrieved June 1, 2019 .
  7. a b c Mag. Ingrid Wilbacher, PhD: Katharina-Schroth Therapy in Scoliosis. A short HTA report. In: http://www.hauptverband.at . Evidence-Based Economic Health Care, EBM / HTA, accessed June 1, 2019 .
  8. Michele Romano, Silvia Minozzi, Josette Bettany ‐ Saltikov, Fabio Zaina, Nachiappan Chockalingam, Tomasz Kotwicki, Axel Maier ‐ Hennes, Stefano Negrini: Exercises for adolescent idiopathic scoliosis . In: Cochrane Systematic Review - Intervention . 2012, August 15, 2012. doi : 10.1002 / 14651858.CD007837.pub2 .
  9. Muhammad Naghman Choudhry, Zafar Ahmad, Rajat Verma: Adolescent Idiopathic Scoliosis . In: The Open Orthopedics Journal . 2016, No. 10, 2016, pp. 143–154. doi : 10.2174 / 1874325001610010143 .
  10. Weiss HR, Klein R .: Improving excellence in scoliosis rehabilitation: a controlled study of matched pairs. . In: Pediatr Rehabil. . 2006, No. 3, 2006, pp. 190-200. doi : 10.1080 / 13638490500079583 . PMID 17050397 .