Yay, stretches to the rescue!
In this Part 4 of Pelvic Tilt talk, I’ve got some easy, effective stretches that anyone can do to help relieve muscle tightness that contributes to an excessive anterior pelvic tilt.
In Parts 4 and 5, I promised some specific stretching and strengthening exercises you can do to bring balance to the muscles contributing to proper alignment of the pelvis.
We’ll start with the stretches.
Stretching Specifics To Alleviate Excessive Anterior Pelvic Tilt
When muscles are too tight, they shorten, pull and tug on bone and can easily bring them out of proper anatomical alignment. Let’s see if we can’t fix it.
There are specifically three muscles that contribute, through tightness, to the excessive anterior pelvic tilt. Fortunately, these respond well to precise stretches:
- Rectus Femoris
- Lumbar Erectors
As a consequence, when the psoas muscle is too tight – or too strong relative to other muscles of the pelvic area – it contributes to excessive extension of the upper lumbar area, and deeper flexion in the lower lumbar area.
This simply means that there is an increased “sway” in the lower back. This is stressful to the lumbar region contributes to excessive anterior pelvic tilt.
This is why it is important to keep the psoas muscle from being over strengthened, and why it is also important to keep it from being too tight by implementing stretches specific to the psoas muscle.
Rectus Femoris: The rectus femoris, commonly known as part of the quadriceps muscles group, aids in flexing the hip as well as extending the knee.
Unlike the psoas, the rectus femoris doesn’t attach to the lumbar region, but rather to the front of the pelvis.
This muscle can easily become tight due to repeated lifting of the leg forward and/or specific sports activities. It also responds well to stretching – and stretching it feels good, too!
Lumbar Erectors: The lumbar erectors run up the sides of your spine in the low curve of your back behind the waist, and are often shortened due to tightness in its anterior pelvic tilt bedfellows, the psoas and the rectus femoris.
These muscles respond best to a safe, gentle stretch initiated in the abdominal wall.
To help correct the excessive anterior pelvic tilt, perform each of these exercises for 3 times on each side for a 30 second hold. You can start with one set a day and work your way up to 2 to 3 times a day, and maintenance at 3 days a week.
Note: Be sure the muscles are warm before you start to stretch. See Stretching: Why you don’t want to phone this one in
In Part 5, some specific strengthening exercises to help!
Strengthening exercise to offset excessive anterior pelvic tilt
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