7 Lower Cross Syndrome Exercises and Treatment Plans
The lower cross syndrome describes when the muscles surrounding the pelvis are imbalanced. The most common pattern of muscle imbalance occurs when there is a chronic weakness in the gluteus and abdominal muscles. You may feel a simultaneous tightness in the hip flexors and lower back extensors. When this happens, the pelvis is pulled forward and results in extra tension on the hips or the lower back.
Your lower cross syndrome may cause groin pain, as well as lower back pain and instability. Incorrect sitting posture is a leading cause of the lower cross syndrome, especially due to the increase in office desk jobs during recent years. Fortunately, a chiropractor can offer relief for this common condition. Your regular chiropractic treatments will help to alleviate the pain from the lower cross syndrome.
In addition, there are lower cross syndrome exercises that can correct this condition. As you do the exercises, remember to avoid the bad posture habits that contribute to aggravating the pain. The following are seven lower cross syndrome exercises to try at home:
1. Pelvic Tilt Exercises
This relatively simple lower cross syndrome exercise helps to release tight back muscles. To perform the pelvic tilt, lie on your back and bend your knees with the soles of your feet placed flat on the floor. Next, rock your hips gently towards your face. Your butt won't leave the floor, but your lower back will be pressed onto the surface.
Once you are in this position, hold for approximately 30 to 60 seconds. Afterwards, repeat the pelvic tilt motion for 3 to 5 times. Over an extended period, doing this exercise will increase the flexibility of the targeted areas in your body.
2. Squat Exercises
With this lower cross syndrome exercise, focus on your form first and worry about progressing later. To begin, stand facing forward with your feet shoulder-width apart, chest up, and toes turned out slightly. Improve your balance by extending your arms in front of you or place them at the back of your head.
Once you've settled into this position, slowly bend your knees while pushing your hips and butt out as if you're sitting down. Remember to keep your spine neutral, chest lifted, and don't allow your lower back to round. Next, lower your body toward the ground, making sure your thighs are parallel. Keep your knees over your toes; don't allow them to fall inward.
Hold this position for 3 seconds, and then straighten your legs to go back into the starting position. Repeat this motion for three sets of 10 reps.
3. Bridge Exercises
As you get more comfortable with the lower cross syndrome exercises, you can start introducing the bridge stretch into your routine. Bridges work the gluteus maximus muscles of the buttocks. This muscle is usually engaged when the hips are moved, particularly when a person is bent into a squat. The gluteus maximus is an important part of your body, so keeping it strong will help to remedy many lower back pain issues.
To perform a bridge, lie on the ground and bend your knees with your feet on the floor, hip-width apart. Press your feet onto the floor while ensuring your arms stay by the sides. Next, raise your buttocks off the ground so your body forms a straight line from the knees to shoulders. Remember to squeeze your buttocks while making your shoulders remain on the floor.
Next, lower your body to the ground, and then rest for a few seconds before repeating this motion again. Do this lower cross syndrome exercise for 15 times. Rest for one minute before beginning another set.
4. Plank Exercises
The plank is a great abdominal and core exercise that can fix lower cross syndrome. It works the rectus abdominis and the other core muscles, including the abs. The effects of this lower cross syndrome exercise will run along the spine, from the pelvis up to the shoulder girdle.
To perform a plank, start by getting into a push-up position. Next, place your forearms on the floor, slightly wider than the shoulder width, and ground toes onto the floor. To stabilize your body, squeeze the gluteal muscles, and make sure your legs are working too. Be careful not to hyperextend or lock your knees.
Neutralize your spine and neck by focusing on a spot on the floor, preferably a foot beyond where your hands are placed. Your head and back should form a straight line. If you're a beginner, hold this position for at least 20 seconds before going back to the starting position. As you get more comfortable, hold it for as long as you can without compromising your form.
5. Quadricep Stretch Exercises
To do the quadriceps stretch, stand on one foot while grasping the back of a chair for balance. Using your free hand, grasp the stretching leg behind you at the ankles. Next, gently pull the heel towards your butt until you feel a strong stretch in the front part of your thigh.
Hold this position for 30-60 seconds, and then repeat on the opposite leg. Do this exercise three times for each leg before and after any activity involving this muscle group. Remember to keep your knees close together. Also, maintain a neutral pelvis when performing the quadriceps stretch.
6. Lunge Stretch Exercises
Begin by placing your hands on your hips, while standing with your feet shoulder-width apart. Next, step forward with one leg while flexing your knees to drop your hips. Lower your body until your rear knee is almost touching the ground. Hold this position for two seconds.
Remember to maintain an upright posture and keep your front knee behind the front midfoot. Push through your heels and extend both knees to bring you back to the starting position. Then, repeat this motion with the opposite leg. Do this lower cross syndrome exercise 10-15 times and make sure you alternate sides.
7. Hip Flexor Stretch Exercises
Begin the hip flexor stretch by kneeling with your right knee. Then, bend your left leg in front at a 90-degree angle. Place your hands on your left knee, and ensure your back is straight. Next, lean forward into your left hip as you squeeze the muscles in your right buttocks. Hold this position for 30 seconds, then repeat the motion on the other side.
These are just a few of the lower cross syndrome exercises that can help with the condition. Pick and perform the exercises within your comfort level, making sure you don't overexert your body. For a long-term treatment plan, be sure to consult with Chiro-Med's chiropractor services for more information.