How to fix your Hyperlordosis (Arched back)

// What is Hyperlordosis?

Hyperlordosis is a term used to describe the excessive curvature in the lower back.

It is also referred to as having a significantly arched back.

 

// What are the causes?

1. Tight lower back muscles:

This includes:

  • Erector spinae group
  • Quadratus lumborum
  • Latissimusi dorsi (through the thoracolumbar fascia)
  • Psoas

Collectively as a group – when these muscles are tight/overactive, they will pull the lower back into an excessive arch. (Hyperlordosis)

2. Weak abdominal muscles:

With Hyperlordosis, the abdominal muscle group are placed in an inefficient stretched position.

This makes them particularly weak and inhibited.

…. This is a problem! A big problem.

Why?

The primary role of the abdominal muscles is to oppose the strong pull of the lower back muscles in order to maintain a normal lumbar spine curve.

// Hyperlordosis increases the risk of:

  • Nerve impingement
  • Joint degeneration
  • Muscular tightness
  • Postural issues
  • Lower back pain

 

// How can you tell if you have a Hyperlordosis?

1. Take a photo of yourself on the side:

hyperlordosis

Do you have a significantly arched back?

(… If you have it – you can not miss it.)

 

2. Feel the muscles on the back:

In Hyperlordosis, the muscles on either side of the lumbar spine are prominent and significantly firm to touch.

 

// Things to avoid

Do NOT place your body in positions where there is an excessive amount of extension in your lower back.


 

The 8 steps to fix your Hyperlordosis


Image courtesy of Paul Gooddy at FreeDigitalPhotos.net


Note: All exercises must be conducted in a gentle and pain-free manner. If you have any doubts, please feel free to contact me and I’ll help you out.


1. Release the tight muscles

a) Lower back

Instructions:

  • Lie on the floor with you hip and knees bent.
  • Place a massage ball on the tight muscles under the lower back region.
  • Relax your body weight on top of the ball.
  • Move your body in a circular motion on top of the ball to target the tight areas.
  • Proceed to cover all the muscles for at least 1 minute each.
  • Do not hold your breath. Remember to breathe!

 

2. Stretches

a) Prayer Pose

Instructions:

  • Kneel on the floor.
  • Spread and reach your hands as far in front of you as possible.
  • Sit back into your hips.
  • Aim to feel a stretch in the lower back.
  • Take deep breaths in/out
  • Do this for 1 minute.

b) Lat stretch

Instructions:

  • Stand with your feet shoulder width apart.
  • Bend all the way to one side.
    • To emphasise the stretch, reach your arm over. (see above)
  • Aim to feel a stretch on the side of your body to the lower back.
  • Hold this position for 1 minute.
  • Alternate sides.

c) Hip flexor stretch

Instructions:

  • Assume a deep lunge position as above.
  • Tuck your tail bone underneath you.
  • Remain up right.
  • Make sure you feel the stretch in the front of the hip of the back leg.
  • Hold the stretch for a minimum of 1 minute.
    • (If you are particularly tight in this region, I strongly encourage you to hold the stretch for 2 minutes)
  • Repeat at least 3-5 times on each side.

 

3. Learn to breathe

“Breathing?… What has that got to do with my Hyperlordosis?”

Everything.

Your breathing is crucial in maintaining the correct posture. (especially when it comes to fixing your hyperlordosis)

Not only do your abdominal muscles help with full exhalation, they also help maintain the ideal lower alignment by controlling the position of the lower ribs.

Here’s what to do…

  • Lie on your back with your knees bent and feet on the floor.
    • You can tilt your pelvis backwards to help flatten your back on the floor.
  • Take a deep breath in through your nose and slowly let the air out through your mouth.
  • As you reach the point where you completely empty out your lungs, notice how your lower ribs and lower back drop towards the ground.
  • Maintain this lowered rib position by gently engaging your abdominal muscles
    • Engage your core muscles by drawing your belly button in.
  • Continue diaphragmatic breathing for 10 repetitions
    • Imagine you are breathing deep into your stomach. Your upper chest should not be moving excessively as you breathe.
  • Practice this as many times throughout the day!
    • It takes time to get good at breathing properly.

 

4. The Dead bug exercise

This exercise is king.

If you do not practice this exercise, you will not get rid of your Hyperlordosis!

The aim of this exercise is to engage your abdominal wall to keep your spine in neutral.

As everyone is at different strength levels, I have included 3 variations of the Dead Bug exercise for you to try.


Thing to keep in mind:

  • Keep the lower back COMPLETELY flat against the floor… ALL OF THE TIME.
    • It is imperative that you do not let your lower back arch and lift off the ground.
  • There should be NO tension in your lower back whilst performing these exercises.
  • Think about keeping your lower ribs down at all times. Your chest should NOT flare out.
  • Remember to engage the core and abdominal muscles throughout all movements.
    • (Think about drawing your belly button down into your spine.)

a) Leg drop (bent knee)

Instructions:

  • Lie on your back with your knee and hip bent at 90 degrees. (feet off floor)
  • Keep both knees bent throughout the movement.
  • Keeping your right knee bent towards your chest, slowly lower the left leg towards the ground.
  • Only lower as far as you can whilst maintaining your lower back completely flat on the ground.
  • Return back to starting position.
  • Alternate legs.
  • Repeat 10 times.

b) Leg drop (straight leg)

Instructions:

  • Lie on your back with your knee and hip bent at 90 degrees. (feet off floor)
  • Keeping your right knee bent towards your chest, slowly lower AND straighten the left leg towards the ground.
  • Only lower as far as you can whilst maintaining your lower back completely flat on the ground.
  • Return back to starting position.
  • Alternate legs.
  • Repeat 10 times.

c) Alternate arm/leg drop

Instructions:

  • Lie on your back with your knee and hip bent at 90 degrees (feet off floor) and arms straight up into the air.
  • Slowly lower the left leg AND right arm towards the ground.
    • Only lower as far as you can whilst maintaining your lower back completely flat on the ground.
  • Return back to starting position.
  • Alternate opposite arm/legs.
  • Repeat 10 times.

If you’re like most of the people that I have taught this to, you will probably hold your breath whilst performing these exercises. Make sure that you do NOT hold your breath!

I repeat – Do NOT hold your breath!

 

5. “Get a strong bum”

(… also known as activating your glute muscles.)

If the Dead bug exercise is king, then strengthening your glute muscles is queen.

If your bum muscles aren’t doing their job, the lower back tends to take over resulting in an arched back.

Here are 3 glute activation exercises:

Remember: Engage your abdominal muscles and breathe properly!

 

a) Standing kick back

Instructions:

  • Whilst standing upright, extend your leg backwards until you feel your gluteals contract firmly.
  • Keep your lower ribs down by engaging your abdominal muscles.
  • Do NOT arch your back.
  • Do not rotate or bend forward.
  • Hold for 5 seconds.
  • Alternate legs for 20 repetitions each.

b) 4 pt kneel kick back

Instructions:

  • Whilst in the 4 point kneel position, extend your leg backwards until you feel your gluteals contract firmly.
  • Keep your back straight by engaging your abdominal muscles.
  • Do not rotate your body. Only your leg should be moving.
  • Hold for 5 seconds.
  • Alternate legs for 20 repetitions each.
  • (Note: It may look like my back is arching too much, but the truth is, I just have a big bum muscle)

c) Bridge

Instructions:

  • Lie down on your back with your knees bent.
  • Flatten your lower back to the ground.
  • Keep your lower ribs down by engaging your abdominal muscles.
  • By pushing off with your heels, lift your buttocks off the floor.
  • Only lift as high as you can without arching your lower back.
  • Hold for 5 seconds.
  • Repeat 15 times.

*** BONUS ***: Want even more exercises for the glutes? Click here to see the full list of all the exercises that you will ever need to know!


6. Learn how to stand/sit properly

When sitting or standing: Your rib cage should feel directly into your pelvis.

In people with Hyperlordosis, the lower portion of the ribs tend to flare forwards (see above) causing an arched back.

How to position the ribs correctly:

  • Place your hand at the front of the lower rib cage.
  • Gently guide your lower rib cage down and backwards.
    • Make sure not to over shoot this movement!
  • You should feel some pressure being taken off your lower back.
    • … if you are very tight, you might even feel a stretch.

Here’s an analogy:

You are iron man. (… this is my personal childhood dream)

You have that light thing on the chest.

In most of you, your light would be pointing in a slight upward direction from the horizontal.

You want to get the light beam horizontal.


Note: With people with Rounded shoulders, this correction will usually find your shoulders will round forward even more. Check out this post to address this problem.

 

7. Over head activities

If you perform any exercises/activities/jobs where you are using your hands above your head… you need to read this.

A common problem I see with these over head movements is that people tend to over arch their lower back. Don’t do this!

Examples:

  • Shoulder press at the gym
  • Puting clothes on the line
  • Painting the ceiling

8. Fix your posture (as a whole)

Although you were see significant improvements in your Hyperlordosis by just doing the above mentioned exercises, to make sure you address the problem wholistically you will need to have a look at these postures.

Hyperlordosis is commonly associated with the following types of postures: 

1. Sway back posture

Want to know more? Check out this post: Sway Back Posture.

2. Anterior pelvic tilt

Want to know more? Check out this post: Anterior Pelvic Tilt.

3. Hunchback posture

… Want to know more? Check out this post: Hunchback Posture.

Since a Hyperlordosis never exists by itself, I strongly encourage (in fact, I insist!) you look at the above posts to help you completely address your problem.


In summary:

To fix your Hyperlordosis:

Keep your a) lower ribs down, b) core/abdominal engaged, c) get a strong bum and d) breathe properly!

Leave me a comment! I reply to everyone!

About

I am a physiotherapist who has personally experienced the pain as a result of bad posture. I would like to offer you some of the solutions that I and my patients have greatly benefited from.

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77 thoughts on “How to fix your Hyperlordosis (Arched back)

  1. Hi! I’m really happy I found your website, I find it really useful. I feel the need to ask you about one thing: you advise us to avoid doing any activities that require using hands above our head. Does it also count when we’re leaned forward (I guess it does, but I need to be sure)? I, for example, have always (so for 10 years already, I guess) washed my hair, standing above the bathtub (there was no shower in the house) in this position: https://i.imgur.com/IoRDCsv.png (sorry, I assumed it would be best if I just draw what I meant lol) Even now – I do have a shower – I wash my hair that way, I’m simply used to it. Could it be one of the reasons for my lordosis? Should I avoid this position? I think the pain in my back gets stronger when I wash my hair, it’s really uncomfortable… But maybe it’s okay? Shouldn’t it do to my body what the prayer’s pose does? Could it be that it actually somehow helped despite the hands? Please answer me!

    1. Hey Emily,

      Your lower back is actually in a more flexed position in that drawing that you sent. (nice drawing by the way)

      So – actually, this is a reversal of your lumbar lordosis… which you would think is good.. but in this particular position, you would be loading (perhaps over loading) your muscles, joints, ligaments and discs. If your lower back is used to being in HYPERLORDOSIS, then I would assume that you may be weaker when your back in FLEXED. This could be leading to your pain!

      I would do it in a more hinged position. (See below)

      Aim for the middle one “Neutral spine”

      Mark

      1. Thank you! 🙂 Btw. I’ve been doing those exercises for 2 days already and noticed that nothing hurts me when I do the prayer’s pose or camel pose, be it on the chair or the floor. I don’t feel any pain in my lower back, as if nothing was stretching. Could it be that it isn’t that much of a mess after all? Because I’m starting to worry lol. My abdominal muscles have always been weak tho.
        And yet another question that I have – does deep lunge do pretty much the same thing as the hip flexor stretch? I’ve found the first one in your ‘Is sitting destroying your butt muscles?’ article, tried it out and felt the pain mainly in the upper part of the back leg, including the hip. Thanks in advance!

        1. Hey Emily,

          You may not be as tight you as think if you do not feel the stretch in your lower back. If you are indeed tight, you may need to stretch one side of the back at a time. You can do that doing these exercises.

          The deep lunge position is very similar to the lunging hip flexor stretch. As long as you are feeling the stretch, you are doing it good!

          Mark

  2. Thank you. Great post. I’m printing this out and doing it. Will report back. How long you think it will take for results?

  3. Hi Mark,
    Thank you for this info. I wanted to ask, how to tell the difference between APT and hyperlordosis? I am pretty sure I have both, all the symptoms of APT and a very visual deep curve in my lower lumbar. Doing corrective exercises for APT, would that also help with the hyperlordosis? Strengthen abs, gluten hammies and stretch quads, psoas and lower back? My shoulders/neck are also involved.
    Thank you for your time,

    Lil

  4. Hello Mark, I’m finding the website early useful. I’ve had bad lower back for 4 years
    And have recently seen a physio who diagnosed me as overextended.
    Your website reinforces what he told me and shows me more exercises also.
    I’m finding them all very useful, and you also explain exactly why you need to
    Do them and it all makes more sense now. Pics are good too as it shows you exactly
    What area you should be targeting.
    Thanks a lot

  5. Hi Mark!

    I have had this problem and severe back pain for so long and your post was so helpful!

    I have an extremely arched back because of anterior pelvic tilt.

    If I do these exercises everyday, how long does it usually take to fix Hyperlordosis?

    Thanks again for this great post, so helpful!

    1. Hi Jess,

      Thanks for your comments.

      It’s quite hard to say how long it is going to take. It varies so much from person to person.

      Your issue could be due to tight muscles, tight joints, weak muscles, poor motor control… or even combination of everything! Each which all take different times to different people.

      Mark

  6. Hi, my name is Vin, and i cant figure out what i have and what to do. Seems like i have many issues and i think that doing some exercise may help some positions and hurt others. I know i definitely have rounded shoulders and some hunchback. However, my lower belly sticks out and my lower back has a small curve, but not as bad or severe as classic hyperlordosis as shown. i notice that when i stand for long periods of time my lower belly and hip pop forward along with my rounded shoulders and hunch back. Also when i sit i hunch. What do I have, do i have everything? And whats the best way to fix all of this? should i focus on one area and then start on another? For example you say not to do an ab stretch, but for hunchback it is required.

    1. Hi Vincent,

      This is why posture can get a bit complex.

      Postural deviations rarely exist on their own. They are usually combined with a whole lot of other stuff as well.

      The question you need to ask yourself is, in WHAT POSITION, do you mainly get your symptoms?

      If it is sitting, then you should fix your sitting posture.

      If it is standing, then you should fix your standing posture.

      Also – check out these 2 posts. You might be one of them!
      Anterior pelvic tilt
      Sway back posture

      Mark

  7. Hi Mark,
    I’ve been doing the exercises you’ve recommended for APT, I seemed to fit the description when I checked a photo of myself. But now after seeing this post, I’m partial that I might just have hyperlordosis. I’ve been advised doing APT exercises if you don’t have APT is bad for posture. So before I carry on, is there any way to identify if the arch on my lower back is caused by a pelvic tilt or if it’s just hyper-lordosis?
    Thanks.

    1. Hi Kevin,

      If you have a neutral pelvis but a prominent lumbar lordosis, then is it likely that you just have a hyper lordosis.

      This is usually seen in people with a long thoracic kyphosis.

      Mark

  8. Any way to call me?

    I HAD A BACK INJURY FROM LIFTING A BOX BACK IN FEBRUARY AND IT CAUSED HYPERLORDOSIS ON JUST ONE SIDE OF MY BACK (right). It’s really taken a toll on me. Please HELP. Not sure if physical therapist and trainer at gym doing the correct things!

    Della Giammusso
    Owner
    VIPSEATS

  9. Hi there I am currently struggling with lower back problems and shoulder problems.
    I had an L4L5 disc bulge with nerve compression 3 years ago, this was misdiagnosed and I had zero pain relief so was unable to do exercises or sit for almost all this time. I also have sacralisation and now that the bulge has healed I am able to sit but have a very stiff and painful lower back.

    In addition for the last 6 months I have had terrible shoulder problems, a burning pain front and back but moreso at the front where my pectoral muscles are. My chest and neck muscles also hurt and my arms get very weak. The pec muscle on the one side is locked in spasm and my physio has no ide what to do. MRI showed mild arthritis, a scan of my left shoulder showed some tendonitis and impingement but as yet I have no treatment. Because the pain is so severe I am being referred for fibromyalgia and costocondritis, and also for a neck MRI. My pain is constant and worsens as he Day goes on, the more I use my arms. My shoulders feel as though they are being pulled forward and I definitely have a bigger arch to my back than I should have. I have been told that I have little muscle mass and my lower back muscles and abdominals are too weak to support my upper body. I don’t have any treatment as yet and my pain flares more with exercise. Can you suggest anything I can do to start relieving the muscle pain and strengthen myself. I don’t know where to start to heal myself, things are getting worse as time goes on.

    For no major injury this seems a lot of pain and is very life’s limiting. The shoulder problems started with a pop in my right arm bicep area but this has shown as fine.
    Thank you.

    1. Hi Caz,

      Sounds like you have a considerable amount of inflammation at the moment.

      Your first step would be try to reduce it so that you can start to do more exercises to help fix your issues.

      Did the doctor prescribe any anti-inflammatory medication for 1-2 weeks to see if it made any difference?

      Mark

      1. Hello there, yes I was prescribed naproxen initially followed by diclofenic. Neither made any difference and I struggled to tolerate them.

        I have a lot of clicking in both shoulders also and some tingling down into my arms and my muscles all over feel painful. My gp now wants me to try pregablin. He feels it may be nerve pain as opposed to inflammation / I’m not convinced as the pain burns constantly and worsens the more I move my arms and shoulders.

        Thank you for your advice

      2. I have bulging disc in L4 and L5 also. I have been in pain since 11/2014. I was carrying to much fire wood. Is the only thing I can think of. That caused it. I go to a pain management dr. And it’s the worst place ever. They do not help me figure out what’s wrong with me. The dr just wants to keep prescribing pain meds to me. I just want to be fixed. I have gained 50 lbs since 11/2016. Because the pain is so unbearable. Whenever I do anything. No pain medication helps. And I’m scared to take to much, because of addiction. I’ve seen to many people go down because of pain meds. I’m 5ft 51/2 in tall. And I weigh 218 lbs. I have never been this big. I was always very small. Even after having 3 kids. I never got over 165lbs. I have always had a deep arch in my back. Where it used to hurt laying of a hard flat surface. Now since all of this has happened. I’m trying to diagnose myself. Could the weight that I have gained be affecting my arch in my back? Causing it to be collapsing. Kind of like the arch in you foot. Because my back hurts when I reach, or bend slightly forward. Like doing dishes etc… It feels like my back locks up or something. It’s severe pain. And the only thing that helps is if I lay down. Or bend my back backwards. The only time I’m without pain is when laying down. But it does hurt even laying down. When I move my hips, forward, and in a rotation. But it’s kinda like a sore muscle feeling. Massage doesn’t help because I can’t get to the spot where it hurts. I bought a 10s unit 7000. And that seems like it’s the only thing that gets to it. Or if I rotate my back and hips. I don’t know what to do. My dr keeps mentioning getting injections. But I don’t trust that dr. And my insurance won’t even cover it anyway. Please if you have any advice for me. I would really appreciate it. Thanks so much.

        1. Hey there Janine,

          Increase in body weight will place a lot more stress on your lower back. (and can also increase the lumbar lordosis as a result of excess stomach weight). Managing your weight is going to be one of the most important things you need to consider… especially if your body is used to carrying 165lbs MAX.

          It sounds like you have a posterior disc bulge at the L5 region. People with this issue usually respond reasonably well to lumbar spine EXTENSION. This basically means you feel a bit better when you arch your back backwards to an appropriate degree.

          Have you tried this exercise before?

          Arch your back as far back as it will go WITHOUT causing an increase in your pain. You are aiming for a sensation of TENSION. Aim for 20 seconds in this position and repeat 5 times .

          Mark

  10. Im so happy I stumbled on this great and informative page. I had to abandon weightlifting in 2009 for problems that were undiagnosed for years! It is only till recently that I am slowly self diagnosing/ eliminating potential causes and realizing the impact and effect of hyperlordosis. I used to literally get sick after workouts.
    My back problem is quite an issue for my work too as a Photographer.
    I took to cycling that was of not much help either as, as much as I came to love it, it rejected me with equal and opposite tenacity. Not just because of back issues, but also recently having found out I have an Leg Length Discrepancy, which would be fine if I were in any/ most other parts of the world. And possibly a fairly easy fix given the right tools and corrective aids. But in Kenya we do not have a single bike/ cleat fitter. I have sadly also abandoned my hopes of riding.
    With your article, I hope to correct as much as possible to get back to the gym soon. If I can get back to weights without pain by Dec and go to the beach for my next birthday, I would have achieved a massive milestone.
    I refrain from visiting the coast because I currently resemble what a failed science experiment of an apprentice sausage maker would look like.
    Anyways, this is just to say thank you for the great information and useful tips.

  11. I’ve had low back pain for many years now and I believe I have hyperlordosis. I haven’t officially been diagnosed or anything. I love this website, it’s very informative and I’m hopful i can somewhat correct this and have less back painwith tour exercises mentioned above. I wanted to include a photo to see if you think I have this. I do workout quite a bit and there are some exercises that hurt my low back. I try to do an alternative exercise but that doesn’t always work. Crunches and leg raises are not my friends at all in the gym. I have recently ordered a low back brace for supper as I’m increasing my weights. After doing that today, no brace yet, my low back is killing me. Help!! I’m not sure how to include the photo here.

  12. Hi, I really want to try this. Thanks for making it so clear! And I will.
    I’ve had extreme lordosis my whole life, and I’m 37. I was diagnosed by an orthopedic surgeon with femoral antiversion at age 6, and I was told that I was likely to develop lordosis – that the lordosis is caused by the hip abnormality (which goes back 3 generations and my son has it too.) Is that true? Is that a thing that happens? I also have bent shins, supination,and the knees turn inward. We decided not to break my bones to fix it. My lordosis doesn’t cause pain, though it is extreme, just it’s cosmetically awful. If I try to tuck the hips in, they don’t fit, or I have to turn out my knees or feet.
    I have to wonder, seeing this article, if everything I was told was a misunderstanding of the childhood diagnosis. Can I just fix it this way and have normal posture? Would I have to modify in any way?

    1. Hi Carolyn,

      The exercises might help with reducing the hyperlordosis, however, it also sounds like you would have to address the pelvis/hip femur complex as well.

      Did you do a lot of W sitting as a child? This may have encouraged or been a factor of your femoral anteversion.

      Mark

      1. Yes, exclusively I did, but only because I couldn’t sit on the floor any other way without pain. My son does it too. I tried to correct it when he sat down. He’d go right back. Even at 15 months, round sitting caused him pain. I once considered the idea that w sitting causes femoral antiversion, but I have trouble believing that now, and I think it’s sometimes the other way around. Even as a toddler I couldn’t force his legs, (or my own back in childhood) into a wider circle where his feet were together. I wouldn’t be surprised if continued W sitting made it worse though, and it becomes a cycle. As the months go on, I see my older son having some of the same inefficient running mechanics that I have, knees together, feet flying off to the side. My younger son has no issue with this, and could sit normally as soon as he was able to sit.
        I will say that being out of shape after 2 kids has really made that lordosis extreme, and I’ll have to do a lot of exercise to fix any of this. Maybe what I need is a specialist. I’ve been to personal trainers, and they just kind of shake their heads and modify exercises like squats for me. Thanks so much for your response!

  13. doctor mark!
    i think i have Forward head posture,Rounded shoulders,Hunchback posture,Hyperlordosis
    Anterior pelvic tilt,Sway back posture,Knee valgus ..
    It is hard to sleep every day..It hurts too much when I wake up.
    I have too many bad things. Do not know what to do
    If your eyes are okay, show me a picture of my body and want to consult you
    help me

  14. First of all thanks for the great article,
    Ive recently started a strength program (stronglifts) which includes overhead pressing and alot of high bar squatting. I also have a slightly arched lowerback so I was wondering how i could minimise damage on the overhead press or should i completely avoid?
    Also could the squatting cause any potential problems?

    1. Hey Mo,

      As long as you keep your core engaged, abdominals braced and lower ribs down whilst you are performing the exercises (squats, over head press, dead lifts), this should help reduce the hyper extension of your lower back.

      Mark

  15. Hey Mark,
    Thank you SO MUCH for making this site!! When I was looking up weather there was anything I could do to correct my tilt this was the most helpful and informative source I have found yet and gives me lots of hope for my back pain. I was afraid that it was just something I would have to live with. My boyfriend has it too and we plan on doing these exercises together.

    How frequently would you suggest doing these exercises a day and how many repetitions? I know that for some exercises if you do too little it doesn’t make much of an impact. Both of us have the time to do what we need to to get better.

    Thank you Doc.

  16. Hello Mark!

    Thanks for the post. I am Olivia and I am 30 years old, I have a slight arch in my lumbar region along with rounded shoulders. I have also noticed slight right foot pronation.
    My biggest problem is i cant do single leg raises because my knees tend to bend automatically, i cant keep the knees straight lying down at all 🙁 I am a yoga fanatic as well. I would love to rectify my postural problems. I understand i have weak core and some muscle imbalances.Please guide me where to start.

    Much Gratitude

    Olivia

      1. Thanks Mark for writing back 🙂

        https://i.ytimg.com/vi/-pdGnp3B0PA/maxresdefault.jpg

        Find the link to the image above,I am not sure what it is called but when I lie supine on the floor and try to raise single leg while other leg is straight with knee extended on the floor , Following things happen:

        a) Lower back starts to arch

        b) Knee of the raised leg starts to bend automatically

        c) femoral-humeral joint of the raised leg makes painless, creaking sounds sometimes.

        Also, when I am standing or walking my right foot is always pointing outward.

        So, I am planning to follow your offered solutions for Hyper lumbar lordosis and Rounded shoulders along with checking sleeping, sitting and standing postures as i sleep on my stomach and spend 5-6 hours in front of the screen.

        Do you think it’s the right approach?

        Should I perform all the activities mentioned everyday or perform 3 days for shoulder and 3 days lower back?

        Apologies for a long message and Thanks in advance for your time and advise.

        Gratitude

        Olivia

        1. Hey Olivia,

          Thanks for clarifying that!

          It sounds like you lack control over your core muscles which are important in this movement.

          Without a strong foundation, the muscles which lift your leg can’t work efficiently. As a result, your body may compensation by bending.

          Also – the core is responsible to controlling your lower back in this supine position. Without proper engagement of the core, the lower back will arch off the floor.

          If you are getting noises from the hip, is it more of a click or a snapping sound?

          Mark

          1. Hey!!

            Thanks, I suspected so – weak core is playing havoc with my body .

            It’s a mild click sound.

            Cheers

  17. Hi Mark, in your experience, is it possible for someone who has lumbar lordosis and an anterior pelvic tilt, to safely practice handstands? I know this would differ from person to person, and is also dependent on abdominal and core strength. Assuming that a person has consistently practiced the exercises you have suggested to help with ‘fixing’ their posture, do you is handstand a posture best avoided even after their posture is improved?

    1. Hi Elizna,

      It is fine as long as you aim to maintain neutral pelvis/spine.

      If you keep falling into APT and hyperlordosis, I would consider keep getting your core muscles stronger until you can maintain neutral spine.

      However – just make sure you have adequate a) Wrist extension at least 80-90 degrees) and b) full shoulder flexion.

      Mark

  18. I’m aware that results will vary tremendously from person to person, but how long on average do you think it would take a person to fix hyperlordosis through these methods?

    1. Hi Max,

      This is a really hard question to answer.

      It really depends on what exactly is causing the hyperlordosis.

      Some people are just not engaging the right muscles, others might be very tight, and others might have a combination of both.

      It also depends on how long you’ve had it. How much time you are dedicating to exercises. What you do throughout the day etc etc.

      Some people can fix it straight away by just engaging the right muscle, whereas otherwise who have a lot tightness, they can take more than 3 months.

      Hope this answers helps.

      Mark

  19. Hello Mark,
    I was wondering how you should be standing straight? In #2 – Things to Avoid, you have a picture of an arched back when standing up. This is my ‘natural’ back when standing straight. How do I walk without having this posture?
    Also, how do you deal with Hunchback, Arched Back, and maybe even Head-Forward posture all at the same time? I feel like I have an arched back and a bit of the other 2.

    Appreciate this page, has been very useful!
    Sam.

    1. Hi Sam,

      You will have to do the exercises to help reduce your hyperlordosis when walking. It is likely your tight muscles/joints are holding you in this particular position.

      If you have multiple postural deviations (which is very common), I would start on optimising your arched back if it is the most prominent.

      Mark

  20. Hi,
    Do you by chance have any experience with diastasis recti & abdominal hernia? I have that as well as, maybe anterior pelvic tilt or hyperlordosis (or can I have those at the same time?) I took a picture of myself & my shoulders also round foreword. There is so much info online I don’t know where to start. Thank you. Hopefully you can point me in the right direction do my back can stop hurting & I can help my abdominal muscle separation.

    1. Hi Sheena,

      I have seen quite a few people after their pregnancies with diastasis recti and hernias.

      Having an anterior pelvic tilt places your abdominal wall in a long and inefficient position, which effectively makes that area very weak. This can lead to a higher chance of abdominal hernias.

      I would start working on getting good at the “dead bug” exercise. You can find some examples of this here.

      Just make sure you understand how to engage your core appropriately. Do not over tense your tummy muscles!

      Let me know if you need more help.

      Mark

      1. Thank you Mark! I will try the dead bug exercise. I did forget to mention that I also have lower rib flare. I’ve been working on the anterior pelvic tilt but no idea how to help the ribs to go back in (looking back at childhood pictures it seems to be a long time problem) I’m concerned because when I try and exercise my ribs will feel bruised afterwards.
        One more thing, you know when you lay on your back, with your feet flat on the floor so your knees are bent.. Well when I do that my lower back arches. Is that from anterior pelvic tilt? So if I keep correcting my posture it will get better?
        Thank you so much for your response. I’ve recently become a facebook follower since finding your website 🙂

        1. Hi Sheena,

          Rib flare is very common with an anterior pelvic tilt and hyperlordosis. This is due to the over active muscles in the back next to the spine.

          You should be able to flatten your back once you gain better control of your spine/pelvis.

          Thanks for following on Facebook!

          Mark

          1. So rib flare will correct with the correction of anterior pelvic tilt and hyperlordosis. Thanks for the reassurance!

  21. my daughter is 12 and has this, she is very self conscience about it and embarrassed about it because it makes her stomach protrude more than others. She asks about what she can do all the time about it. I decided to research it and found this site. Isn’t there anything we can do or something to wear at night that might help in correcting this?

  22. Hi Mark,
    I sit down for most of my day, around 5/6 hours at school and then most of my time at home. How do I get into the habit of sitting correctly?

    1. Hi Zoe,

      Initially, it is all about awareness.

      You need to keep catching yourself when you slump into bad posture and then re-correct.

      Secondly – it is knowing exactly what the ideal sitting posture is.

      Thirdly – you will need to identify what kind of posture you have so that you can do the specific exercises to help you maintain a more natural posture.

      Realistically – you will not be able to maintain the ideal posture 100% of the time and this is completely fine. Just try to aim to be in a more neutral position than what you are doing now.

      Mark

  23. Hello Doctor
    I was infected with the vertebrae of L5 and S1 when the diagnosis was found to bulge the disc
    My question is whether this injury can be treated permanently or is it a stage of cartilage slide and can not be treated
    Can I return to my sports life normally or have my sports career ended?

    1. Hi Walid,

      It is still possible for the disc bulge to retract to some extent.

      For it to go back 100% will be unlikely.

      But having said that, you can definitely do certain exercises to resume your sports.

      Mark

      1. Please, I would like to give you examples of these exercises if you can
        I just want to say that I practice karate. Can I go back to practicing the sport at the same level before the disease?
        I also want you to explain how well you can heal and if possible
        And what sport can I do right now and whether the bike is harmful or useful and I am in this case
        Thanks Dr.

  24. Hey Mark! Thank you so much for offering your help. I was wondering if i could put a pillow under my head, , because everytime i do these exercises, I get headaches from the hard floor.

  25. I’m so blessed to meet you! I have had this pelvic tilt problem forever! I am going to do your exercises, but the “bridge” exercise hurts me too much so I can’t do that one. Do you think it’s because I have 2 degenerative disks? That is my question. I am 61 years old but not necessarily inactive until the past 6 months. Either way, I’ve been a commercial cleaner all my life and I don’t want to stop because of my tilted pelvis which is really bringing me down.
    Thank you for YOU!! You are truly a giving person sharing this knowledge.
    I commend you.
    Yvonne

    1. Hi Yvonne,

      If you are doing the technique correctly, try raising your hips off the ground to half the height to when the pain starts. This might help your body get used to the exercise.

      Mark

  26. Hi Mark! I’m so happy that i have found your website.you provide much needed help for people , including myself… thanks alot!
    regarding “things to avoid” section: does this qualify as being a dangerous move for someone with hyperlordosis?
    https://cdn2.omidoo.com/sites/default/files/imagecache/full_width/images/bydate/20121116/founderexercise40366113304.jpg
    i saw a TED talk about this exercise, i wanted to know a professionals opinion.
    thanks in advance!

    1. Hey Bob,

      I love that yoga pose. It’s called the Utkatasana pose. Great for posture.

      However – if you are someone who has a significant arch, I would perform the exercise with a more neutral spine and with your abdominal muscles braced.

      Mark

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