If you sit excessively or are generally physically inactive, you’re at greater risk for developing an anterior pelvic tilt. While this condition isn’t all that uncommon, it’s not commonly detected. In fact, research suggests that up to 85 percent of men and 75 percent of women have an anterior pelvic tilt. But because there are no readily noticeable symptoms, they may not even be aware of the condition.
How do you identify an anterior pelvic tilt?
- Exaggerated lumbar curve, causing the forward tilt of the front of the pelvis.
- Protruding abdomen, even with a low body-fat percentage.
- Lower back pain, due to a forward tilt of the pelvis, which tightens back muscles and exaggerates the lower spine’s natural curvature.
What causes the tilt?
The muscular imbalance that causes an anterior pelvic tilt varies. Generally, the hip flexor muscles are short and stiff. When these muscles become sufficiently tight, they pull the pelvis forward, which puts them out of balance with the hamstrings, or the abdominals, or the glutes, or all three. These muscles, in turn, get longer and usually weaker.
How do you fix an anterior pelvic tilt?
By strengthening, balancing, and stretching the muscles surrounding the pelvis. I rank these remedies in order for a reason, as stretching alone doesn’t address the root cause of their tightness. The #1 remedy is to strengthen the pull of muscles that would cause a biomechanically opposing posterior tilt. Here’s how:
#1. Lying Pelvic Tilt
A lying pelvic tilt is exactly what it says on the tin. Lie on your back and tilt your pelvis into alignment by squeezing your glutes (buttocks) and pushing your lower back into the ground. Hold from 30 to 60 seconds, and repeat at least three times.
#2. Standing Pelvic Tilt
Perform this exercise as you would the first one, except stand up while doing it. Squeeze your glutes to automatically pull the front of the pelvis upward. Again, hold from 30 to 60 seconds, and repeat at least three times.
#3. Emphasized Alignment During Bodyweight Repetition
By squeezing the glutes and tilting the pelvis backward during push-ups, squats, lunges, planks, and other bodyweight exercises, you’ll stabilize your spine and strengthen the muscles keeping your pelvis balanced between anterior and posterior tilting.
#4. Emphasized Alignment During Resistance Training
As above, squeeze those glutes and tilt the pelvis backward and perform compound strength exercises known as powerlifts: squats, deadlifts, bench presses, shoulder presses, and rows. Repeat these movements with a heavier weight, maxing out between 3 and 5 repetitions, for 3 to 5 sets. But if you’re a beginner, always begin with the Olympic bar alone, and add weight incrementally.
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Now Get to It!
So, do you have an anterior pelvic tilt? You know what to look out for, but it’s best to consult a healthcare provider to be sure. Whatever the case, at least you’re primed to work toward putting that sucker of a pelvis back into proper alignment. So get going, as delay can exacerbate the problem tenfold. There’s no time like the present.
Disclaimer: This information isn’t a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. You should never rely upon this article for specific medical advice. If you have any questions or concerns, please talk to your doctor.