what is the faulty postures and its causes

A faulty postures is a posture that derives from normal alignment but has no structural impairments.

The head, neck, thorax, lumbar spine, and pelvis are all inter-related, and deviations in one region affect the other areas.

Postural habits

Maintaining good postural habits as an adult is crucial for preventing postural pain syndromes and dysfunction.

there should be a careful follow-up in terms of flexibility and posture training exercises which is important after trauma or surgery

it helps in preventing impairments from contractures and adhesions.

Children benefit greatly from cultivating good postural habits to prevent abnormal stresses on growing bones and the development of adaptive changes in muscle and soft tissue.

postural impairment in pelvis and lumbar region:

Lordotic Posture

An increase in the lumbosacral angle characterizes lordotic posture.

this is the angle that the superior border of the first sacral vertebral body makes with the horizontal, which optimally is 30 degree.

The lumbar lordosis increases along with an anterior pelvic tilt and hip flexion

one often see kypholordotic posture, characterized by increased thoracic kyphosis and a forward head.

Muscle Impairment in Lordotic Posture
  • mobility impairment in the hip flexors muscles ( iliopsoas, tensor fasciae latae, rectus femoris )
  • And in lumbar extensors ( erector spinae )
  • The stretched and weak abdominal muscles (rectus abdominis, internal and external obliques, and transversus abdominis) result in impaired muscle performance.
  • Hip extensors- gluteus maximus and hamstrings.
Common Causes
  • sustained faulty posture
  • pregnancy
  • obesity
  • weak abdominal muscles

Relaxed or Slouched Posture

The posture characterized by relaxation or slouching is alternatively termed swayback.

The amount of pelvic tilting is variable , but usually there is a shifting of the entire pelvic segment anterior

This results in hip extension, and shifting of thoracic segment posteriorly, result in flexion of the thorax on the upper lumbar spine.

This again results in increase lordosis in the lower lumbar region, increased kyposis in the thoracic region, and usually a forward head.

the position of the mid and upper lumbar spine depends on the amount of displacement of the thorax.

when standing for prolong periods, the person usually assumes an asymmetrical strance in which most of the weight is borne on one lower extremity with pelvis drop (lateral tilt) and hip abduction on the unweighted side.

This affects frontal plane symmetry

A sitting slouched posture occurs when there is an overall kyphotic curve throughout the entire thoracic and lumbar spine.

Muscle Impairment in slouched posture
  • mobility impairment in the upper abdominal muscles ( upper segment of the rectus abdominis and obliques )
  • The internal intercostal muscles, hip extensors, lower lumbar extensor muscles, and associated fascia play crucial roles in movement and stability.
  • impaired muscle performance due to stretched and weak lower abdominal muscles ( lower segment of rectus abdominis and obliques )
  • extensor muscle of the lower thoracic region, and hip flexor muscles
Common Causes
  • the relaxed posture in which the muscle are not used to provide support
  • person yields fully to the effect of gravity, and only passive structures at the end of each joint range provide stability.
    • for e.g.= ligaments, joint capsule, bony approximation
  • fatigue
  • when the person feels comfortable slouching
  • muscle weakness ( the weakness may be the cause or effect of the posture )
  • A poorly designed exercise program
  • one that emphasizes thoracic flexion without balancing strength with other appropriate exercises and postural training

Flat Low-Back Posture

Flat low-back posture is characterized by a decreased lumbosacral angle, decreased lumbar lordosis, hip extension, and posterior tilting of the pelvis

Muscle Impairment in Flat Low-Back Posture
  • mobility impairment in the trunk flexor ( rectus abdominis & intercostals ) and hip extensors
  • impaired muscle performance due to stretched and weak lumbar extensor and possibly hip flexor muscle
Common Causes
  • habitual slouching in flexion when sitting or standing
  • overemphasis on flexion exercises in general exercise programs

postural impairment in cervical and thoracic region:

Round Back (increased kyphosis)with forward head

The round head with forward head posture is characterized by an increased thoracic curve, protracted scapulae (round shoulder), and forward (protracted) head.

A forward head involves increase flexion of lower cervical and the upper thoracic regions, increased extension of the upper cervical vertebra, extension of the occiput on C1.

there also may be temporomandibular joint dysfunction with protrusion and depression of the mandible

Muscle impairment
  • mobility impairment in the muscle of the anterior thorax (intercostal muscles)
  • the muscles of upper extremity originating on the thorax ( pectoralis major and minor, latissimus dorsi, serratus anterior)
  • muscles of cervical spine and head that attached to the scapula and upper thorax (levator scapulae, sternocleidomastoid, scalene, upper trapezius)
  • muscles of suboccipital region (rectus capitis posterior major and minor, obliquus capitis inferior and superior )
  • Stretched and weak lower cervical muscles lead to impaired muscle performance.
  • The upper thoracic erector spinae and scapular retractor muscles (rhomboids, middle, and lower trapezius) actively contribute to postural support and shoulder stability.
  • capital flexors (rectus capitis anterior and lateralis, superior oblique longus colli, longus capitis)
Common Causes
  • effects of gravity
  • slouching
  • poor ergonomic alignment in work or home environment.
  • occupational or functional postures requiring leaning forward or tipping the head backward for extended periods
  • Common causes of forward head posture include faulty sitting postures, such as using a computer keyboard or screen improperly placed, adopting relaxed postures, or resulting from a faulty pelvic and lumbar spine posture.
  • similar to relaxed lumbar posture or the flat low-back posture in which there is continued slouching and overemphasis on flexion exercises in general exercise programs.

Flat Upper Back and Neck Posture

Characterized by a decreased thoracic curve, depressed scapulae, depressed clavicles, and decreased cervical lordosis with increased flexion of the occiput on atlas, the flat upper back and neck posture is evident.

Although associated with an exaggerated military posture, it is not a common postural deviation.

there may be temporomandibular joint dysfunction with protraction of mandible

Muscle Impairment
  • mobility impairment in the anterior neck muscles, thoracic erector spinae, and scapular retractors, and potentially restricted scapular movement, which decreases the freedom of shoulder elevation
  • The impaired muscle performance in the scapular protractor and intercostal muscles of the anterior thorax contributes to postural issues.
Common Causes

this is not a common postural deviation and occurs primarily with exaggeration of the military posture.

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