Austin Gwaltney CPT-ACE, USAW, FMS II
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Low back pain and Pelvic Tilt
Today’s tip is about recovery and back pain prevention. Back pain can be caused by a myriad of reasons, but I am going to talk about a very common and easy to avoid form of low back pain. The concept is called pelvic tilt.
There are two types of pelvic tilt which can cause back pain, these are Anterior pelvic tilt or forward movement of the (Anterior Superior Iliac Spine) or top of the pelvis and posterior pelvic tilt or backward movement of the (ASIS) top of the pelvis. Think of your pelvis as a bucket, completely full of water with the handle of the bucket suspended by a rope. If you push down on either side of the bucket water while it is suspended, water will spill out.
Using this analogy, we can understand how the low back pain occurs through pelvic tilt. If your bucket or pelvis tilts forward, your quadriceps or the front of your thighs probably have tight muscles. This forward pulling of your pelvis causes an over exaggerated lumbar arch during standing and sitting. The tight muscles pull on the low back and eventually cause pain or in extreme cases a herniated disc through the wearing of poor posture, Posterior pelvic tilt, is the opposite, the back of the legs or hamstrings are tight and they pull the top of the pelvis backward. This will cause more of a hunched over position because the top of the hip is being pulled back. Once again, the hunching and the tight muscles will cause more low back pain. All of this pain can be alleviated by maintaining proper muscle balance by stretching both the quadriceps and the hamstrings.
Your aching back