When postural distortions occur, excessive pulling from overworked and shortened muscles cause the vertebrae to misalign and entrap nerves, which results in acute and chronic pain and discomfort.
Misalignments can result from one or more combinations of long-term poor body mechanics, overworked and over-exerted muscles, repetitive stress, or from external forces impacting on the muscles, bones and joints from auto-accidents, falls or other injuries.
Since muscles move bones, the shortened muscles pull the bone and joints out of alignment, reducing flexibility in that particular area of the body and creating musculoskeletal imbalances. The body will attempt to relieve pain by compensating for these imbalances. Without proper attention to the soft tissue, the shortened muscle will adapt to its condition and remain fixed.
Common Postural Distortions and Pain
Forward Head Posture
Forward head posture is a common postural distortion most often caused by poor body mechanics. Repetitive computer use has also become a leading contributor.
Visual signs: forward head, rounded shoulders, and protracted shoulder blades.
Palpatory signs: Hypertonic (tight) postural musculature including the posterior sub-occipital muscles, sternocleidomastoid, upper trapezius, pectoralis major and erector spinae in the neck region.
Pain is often felt in the head (headache), neck, and upper back regions. Numbness and tingling may be felt in the arms and hands due to nerve entrapment by the muscles in the neck and/or chest regions.
Anterior Pelvic Tilt
Another common postural distortion which often coincides with forward head posture is anterior pelvic tilt. Some of the contributors include poor body mechanics, pregnancy, and weight gain.
Visual signs: increased curvature of low back (lumbar)
Palpatory signs: Hypertonic (tight) postural musculature including the iliopsoas, erector spinae, quadratus lumborum and rectus femoris
Pain is often felt in the low back, pelvis, hips and thighs.
Posterior Pelvit Tilt
Most often caused by poor body mechanics when standing, or “slouching” when seated.
Visual signs: decreased curvature in low back (flat back), buttocks tilted down or “tucked under”
Palpatory signs: Hypertonic (tight) musculature including the abdominal muscles (rectus abdominis) and hamstrings
Pain is often felt in low back (lumbar) due to increased spinal compression, back of thighs, and abdomen.
Lateral Pelvic Tilt
Most often caused by poor body mechanics when sitting or standing unevenly.
Visual signs: one hip is higher than the other.
Palpatory signs: Hypertonic quadratus lumborum muscle, which is the primary lateral flexor of the low back.
Pain is felt on the side where the pelvis is higher, in the muscle belly and attachment sites.
Neuromuscular Therapy can effectively reduce or eliminate the contributors of most acute and chronic muscular aches and pains through manual “hands-on” structural bodywork. At MYOCARE, our goal is to address the causes, not just the results.