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Hips & Lower Back

Hips & Lower Back Posture Issues

Anterior Pelvic Tilt/ Lower Back Arch (Lordosis)

www.somastruct.com

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There are two posture issues that must be explained together. The reason being is that one of these will directly cause the other. The first one is lower back arch commonly known as Lordosis. This is not to be confused with the natural curvature of our bodies. I look for an excessive lower back arch, this is usually cause by the second deviation called anterior pelvic tilt. An anterior pelvic tilt is most commonly caused by tightening or shortening of this hip flexors along with lack of strength in the lower abdomen and the glutes. The hip flexors consist of eight different muscle groups within the pelvic area. When these particular muscle groups get tight, they begin to shorten. The main cause of these muscles getting tight and becoming shortened is from sitting down for extended periods of time combined with lack of stretching. When these muscles shorten the begin to pull your pelvis forward and in a downward direction. This will directly effect the arch in your lower lumbar area, In particular your L3, L4 and L5 disks.

One of the most common issues caused by these deviations are lower back pain. A good percentage of people have lower back pain and they cannot explain the reason why. They simply continue to except this and go on with their lives. This lower back pain is there because the pelvis is shifted forward out of place, causing pressure on the lower lumbar disks. With the pelvis tilting forward, and extra pressure being put on the back, we very subtly begin to lean forward. This lean forward will put more pressure on our toes which directly puts pressure on our patella tendon in the front of our knee. This can cause unnecessary knee pain.

Some simple habits to develop are once again strengthen and stretch. This is especially the case if your day consist of sitting for long periods at a time. Either from school, work or driving. Doing simple knee raises will help the lower abdomen get stronger along with some lunges or squats to help the glute muscles. Strengthening these muscle groups will help pull the pelvis in the correct direction.  Stretching of the hip flexors can help subside or eliminate some of that back pain and. A simple stretch is to put your right knee down on the ground and your left foot in front with as split bigger then 90 degrees. From here you lean your shoulders back an push your pelvis forward through the front foot, not allowing your knee to go over your front toe, then switch legs. So remember if you are sitting for long periods of time, this simple stretch once or twice a day can help with lower back pain and the tilt of your pelvis.

 Lower Back Arch (Lordosis)/Anterior Pelvic Tilt

 What to look for:

  • When looking from a side profile, check if there is an excessive protruding arch or rounding in the lower back.
  • Downward Tilt of the pelvic bones and hips.

Effects:

  • Lover back pain, around L4 and L5 vertebrae
  • Tightening of  hip flexors
  • Pushes organs up against abdominal muscles
  • “Ripple effect” up through the rest of your spine causing multiple postural deviations

Tight muscle groups:

  • Hip flexors
  • Psoas Major
  • Iliacus

Weak muscles groups:

  •  Gluteus maximus
  • Gluteus medius
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