Closed chain exercises are those where the moving limb forms an unbroken chain with another surface.

mini squats

Closed chain exercise


Closed versus open chain

Thus a foot on a bicycle pedal closes the 'chain' with the body, whereas walking is an 'open-chain' exercise.



Comparison of the Clinical Effects of Open and Closed Chain Exercises after Medial Patellofemoral Ligament Reconstruction. Zhang F, Wang J and Wang F. J Phys Ther Sci. 2014 Oct; 26(10): 1557–1560.

The Effect of Open and Closed Kinetic Chain Exercises on Dynamic Balance Ability of Normal Healthy Adults. Kwon YJ, Park SJ, Jefferson J and Kim K. J Phys Ther Sci. 2013 Jun; 25(6): 671–674.

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