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  • Writer's pictureDr Ravi Mohali


Definition, Swayback vs. lordosis, Causes, Diagnosis, and treatment

Lordosis (Swayback)

Most cases of lordosis aren’t severe enough to cause symptoms or need treatment, but don’t ignore changes in your body. Talk to a chiropractor as soon as you notice anything different about your neck, back, or anywhere else along your spine.

Your lower back is more prone to chronic pain and discomfort than most other parts of your body. In fact, low back pain affects around 80 % of people at some point in their life.

Swayback posture is a particular type of poor posture that often leads to lower back pain. People who exhibit swayback posture have exaggerated curves in their spine, forward-tilting hips, and the appearance of leaning back when standing.

Here’s a look at what swayback posture is, what may cause it, and how it can be treated, including several exercises you can do.

Swayback is a common pattern of posture dysfunction that differs from the normal posture in the following ways:

Your hips and pelvis are tilted forward in front of your headline.

The forward shift of your pelvis causes an exaggerated inward curve in your lower back or lumbar spine; this is known as lordosis.

It also causes an exaggerated outward curve in your upper back; this is called kyphosis.

The misalignment of your spine and pelvis from a swayback posture can put you at an increased risk of developing back and hip injuries. It can also contribute to musculoskeletal injuries in other parts of your body that are forced into a compromised position, such as your neck and shoulders.

Poor posture can also put pressure on your internal organs. This may lead to problems such as:

  • Constipation

  • Heartburn

  • Incontinence

Lordosis is an exaggerated curve of your spine. Some lordosis in your lumbar spine is normal, but excessive curvature is what’s often referred to as swayback.

What causes it?

Swayback posture is often caused by tight hamstrings and back muscles, weak abdominal muscles, and laxity in certain ligaments in the back and pelvis.

Sitting for long periods of time may cause these muscles to tighten. Over time, if not properly stretched, they can become stiff and weak.

Sitting for many hours with poor posture may also turn off your stabilizing muscles, such as your glutes and abdominals. When these muscles aren’t activated, it can lead to weakness over time — and this can also contribute to swayback posture.

Other factors that can contribute to swayback posture include:

  • Hip problems.

  • Discitis.

  • Spinal abnormalities.

  • Spondylolisthesis.

  • Traumatic injury.

  • Neuromuscular conditions.

  • Obesity.

How is a swayback treated?

In the absence of any other health conditions that may be a contributing factor, swayback posture can be treated by lengthening tight muscles, such as your hip muscles and hamstrings, and strengthening weak muscles, such as your abdominals.

Before starting a treatment program, it’s a good idea to get a proper assessment from a Chiropractor or Amrikologist therapist, or other trained professional. Your Chiropractor can assess your posture and manipulate it in the correct direction, then tell you specifically which muscles need stretching and strengthening.

However, it’s also important to know what caused your poor posture in the first place. If you don’t know what led to your swayback posture, you won’t be able to target the root of the problem. As a result, your posture may deviate back into swayback as soon as you stop doing your stretches and exercises.

If you have obesity, losing weight — especially around your abdomen — may help you improve the exaggerated curve in your lower back. If you spend a lot of time sitting at a desk each day, you may benefit from taking more frequent breaks or using a standing desk for part of the day instead of sitting.

Swayback posture is one of the most common types of postural misalignments. It’s characterized by hips that are pushed forward, exaggerated curves in the spine, and the appearance of leaning back when you’re standing.

Swayback posture is often caused by muscle weakness and tightness. A chiropractor or amrikologist can provide you with an individualized plan to help you strengthen and stretch key muscles and maintain good postural habits.

If you’re not sure if you have swayback posture or what caused it, be sure to see your doctor for a diagnosis.

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