I want to spin off of an article I recently read. The following topic is something I encounter weekly if not daily, now that I run my business out of a yoga studio.
The issue of a neutral pelvic tilt…what is it?
A natural neutral pelvis supports a small arch in the low back so that your body is able to support and connect your upper body and lower body, as well as move you.
Therefore to state that a neutral pelvis is actually in an anterior pelvic tilt is in fact correct.
Men and women differ in degrees of what is considered a neutral pelvis in each gender. Women can get away with slightly more of an anterior tilt since a women’s pelvis is designed to support pregnancy, while a man’s pelvis does not.
Now I am going to go ahead and make two generalizations here.
*If a client or student works at a desk or sits all day the likelihood that their pelvis will be posterior is greater.
*On the other hand if you are teaching a group of high-level athletes, then chances are higher that you will see more anterior tilts.
In reality every pelvis is a little different. One exercise could work wonders for one individual while causing pain for another.
Your best bet as a health professional is to get comfortable palpating the bony prominences that together create the “pelvic tilt”. Eyeballing is simply not enough. The PSIS is at one end point of the iliac crest on the back side, they appear as two small bumps. The ASIS is the end point on the front side of your pelvis, these are larger and easy to find with you follow the iliac crest all the way forward.
Chances are if your ass is as flat as a pancake you have a posterior tilt going on and your hamstrings do all the work leaving you with a sad excuse for an ass. HOWEVER I have had female clients with nice C shaped bums that would appear to most to have anterior tilts …that were actually posterior! Ahhh you see I am full of contradictions :P
Get comfortable, touch yourself so that you can in turn palpate others or instruct clients and or students to get a little “hands on” with themselves.
That being said I see a ton of former dancers, gymnasts, as well as yoga enthusiasts at the yoga studio. I work to create pelvic stability both bilaterally and unilaterally so that the core is able to fire properly and clients are far less likely to complain of SI Joint discomfort. In addition I strengthen their posterior chain so that the hamstrings and glutes are firing properly as well as to protect them from a hamstring strain.
Here’s where I confuse some yoga practitioners.
I instruct yogi’s to arch hard when they dead -lift. This throws them for a loop seeing as “tucking your tail” is so common in the yoga world.
As you can see NO ONE RULE applies to every situation…such is life :P
As long as we can create strength and stability through a sound range of motion we will be activating the core musculature that is necessary for supporting a healthy pelvis.