2SP POWER BLOG

in     by Jonathan Reyes 03/27/2017
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  • Improved posture.
  • Reduced instances of low back pain.
  • Increased speed mechanics.
  • Reduced susceptibility to injury.

 

The advantages of proper pelvic mechanics are vast and apply to both general population individuals and especially apply to athlete populations.

Prior to discussing what proper pelvic mechanics entail, we must first understand what pelvic dysfunction looks like.

 

Anterior Pelvic Tilt

Being in Michigan, Hockey is king. Because it’s such an anterior dominant sport most hockey athletes are found to have a strong anterior pelvic tilt.

The skating stance itself creates an increased strain on the quadriceps and hip flexors which brings the iliac crest forward and increases the length of the hamstrings (Figure 1). The high frequency that most hockey athletes skate will eventually cause this change to the body’s structure.

Why is this position bad? The tilt of the pelvic girdle brings an individual into increased lumbar lordosis (low back arching) and poor anterior core activation (weak core).

This poor mechanical position has a correlation to increased susceptibility to injury; specifically to the low back, hip, and increased neck strain.

 

Figure 1: Anterior Pelvis Tilt vs Posterior Pelvic Tilt

Figure 1: Anterior Pelvic Tilt vs Posterior Pelvic Tilt

 

Posterior Pelvic Tilt

Whether here in Michigan, the south, or out west one thing always reigns true… Speed Wins.

Now Posterior pelvic tilt looks to be a much better position; compared to anterior tilt (Figure 1). Structurally speaking, it definitely shows a lower likelihood for injury and it creates a better base for loading in weight bearing exercises.

The down fall of this positioning…poor hip extension. Why do we care about hip extension? It’s vital to almost everything, from sports to everyday living! Athletes love hip extension for one reason; SPEED.

 

Figure 2: Hip Extension

 

 

After presenting the disadvantages of both sides of pelvic dominance from anterior vs. posterior pelvic tilt. You may wonder, what is the best position to be in?

Everything in life is about moderation and I believe this especially applies to aspects of exercise. I use the visual of a spectrum, too far forward and you’re caught in anterior tilt, too far back and you’re stuck in posterior tilt.

Neutral pelvic tilt isn’t too far forward, not too far back, as Goldilocks put it…. It’s just right!

 

Neutral Pelvic Tilt

In neutral tilt, the body seems to find the best of both worlds. It is able to be properly loaded without increased strain on the lumbar spine, we have symmetry between the front and back of the body, and we don’t disrupt sports performance or speed mechanics.

How to obtain neutral pelvic orientation:

  1. Incorporate corrective hip extension work ie. Glute Bridges
  2. Maintain proper form in core exercises!
  3. Increase pelvic mobility with proper stretches in all planes
  4. Don’t forget hamstring work!
  5. Do more than just squat!

 

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