Comparison of pelvic tilt before and after hip flexor stretching in healthy adults

Preece, SJ ORCID:, Tan, YF, Alghamdi, TDA and Arnall, FA 2021, 'Comparison of pelvic tilt before and after hip flexor stretching in healthy adults' , Journal of Manipulative and Physiological Therapeutics, 44 (4) , pp. 289-294.

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Objectives: An increase in anterior pelvic tilt is often assumed to result from short hip flexor muscles. Such altered postural alignment may increase the stress on the lumbar spine and has been shown to be a characteristic of specific low back pain populations. However, there has been minimal research investigating the link between hip flexor muscle length and pelvic inclination/lumbar lordosis in relaxed standing. Therefore, this study sought to understand whether hip flexor stretching would reduce pelvic tilt and/or lumbar lordosis. Methods: We quantified pelvic tilt and lumbar lordosis before and after a single session of passive hip flexor stretching in a sample of 23 male subjects. Changes in hip flexor length were also characterised, using a Thomas test protocol to measure passive hip extension in supine lying. We investigated both the mean effect of the stretching protocol and potential correlations between changes in passive hip extension and changes in pelvic tilt/lumbar lordosis. Results: Following the stretching protocol, there was a mean increase of 2.6° (p<0.001) in passive hip extension and corresponding mean reduction of 1.2° (p<0.001) in anterior pelvic tilt. However, there was no change in lumbar lordosis nor were there any meaningful correlations between the change in passive hip extension and change in pelvic tilt/lumbar lordosis. Conclusions: The results suggest that hip muscle stretching may lead to immediate reductions in pelvic tilt during relaxed standing. Such stretching programmes could play an important role in interventions designed to improve standing postural alignment.

Item Type: Article
Schools: Schools > School of Health Sciences
Journal or Publication Title: Journal of Manipulative and Physiological Therapeutics
Publisher: Elsevier
ISSN: 0161-4754
Related URLs:
Depositing User: SJ Preece
Date Deposited: 04 Jun 2021 10:08
Last Modified: 03 Jun 2022 02:30

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