10/05/2006

Assessing and Training for Better Posture: Lower Extremity Postural Distortion

Part one of a series of 3 articles
Good posture is essential for the best exercise performance, and to avoid pain and injury. and in everyday life.

Flattened and externally rotated feet, Knees rotated and tilted inward...

When these postural distortions are observed while standing or performing movements, they indicate a Lower Extremity Postural Distortion. The legs are not capable of producing optimal levels of force, or of absorbing force from activities such as running.

Tight Muscles include:

  • Calves
  • Inner Thigh
  • IT Band
  • Hip Flexors

Common complaints with this postural distortion include foot pain (heel spurs or plantar fascitis), knee pain, hip pain and shin splints.

Weak muscles include:

  • Tibialis (shins)
  • Vastus Medialis (a quadricep)
  • Glutes Maximus & Medius
  • Hip External Rotators

As you can see, when a muscle is tight, its opposing muscle is weak. An effective corrective component of your exercise program will focus on strengthening the weak muscles and stretching the tight muscles.


Proper exercise selection is very important. Today, I met with member who frequently used the inner thigh machine. His knees were internally rotated indicating that this machine was not likely to produce a successful outcome for his program. Please let me know if you need help with assessment, exercise selection or program design.


Future topics: Pelvic Tilt, Protracted Shoulder, Forward leaning head