How to assess posture with Plumb Line
Some considerations for doing your assessment.
- Find someone else to do the observing, or
- Have a photo taken of you from the Left and Right sides.
- Draw a straight line up from the ankle (at 90 degrees).
- Use these photos as your tools for analysis.
BEGIN POSTURE ASSESSMENT AT THE FOOT
Foot and Ankle
- As the feet are anchored to the ground, they are less likely to move about and are an excellent place to start.
Knee and Lower Leg
- Does the knee sit evenly in the middle? Or,
- Is there more showing in front of the knee or behind the knee?
- Does the line run through the middle of the hip at the level where the leg meets the pelvis? Or,
- Can you see more of the pelvis behind the line OR in front of the line?
- What are the natural curves of the spine doing?
- Is the lower back (LUMBAR spine) sitting evenly between front and back, or is it:
- Too far forward of the line, with an excessive curve of the lower back (lordosis)
- Too far forward of the line with a flat back, or
- Too far behind the line, flattening the lower back, removing the natural lumbar curve.
Middle and Upper back (RIB Cage and THORACIC Spine:
Does the rib cage sit evenly in front and behind the line?
- Or is more of the rib cage and spine:
Behind the line:
- Potentially increasing the curve of the upper back (Thoracic KYPHOSIS)
- Rounding of the shoulders forward, shortening the muscles in the chest and increasing the roundedness of the upper back
- This may lead to the head moving too far forward of the line.
Front of the line:
- Which may indicate a straightening or ‘flattening’ of the upper back (natural Thoracic KYPHOSIS).
- This rigid ‘Military Posture’ may tend towards difficulty bending forward from the middle and upper back.
Does the line run through the shoulder? If not, is it:
Pulled back behind the mid-line:
- Can indicate shoulders that are squeezing together from the back muscles, OR
- Have issues further down the body in the legs, pelvis, or rib cage pulled you behind the mid-line?
Rolled-forward in front of the mid-line:
- Similar to the issues in the rib cage and upper back (Thoracic Spine) in which chest muscles are tight or upper back muscles are weak, or
- Issues from below may be pushing your whole torso forward of the mid-line, influencing your shoulder positioning. What exactly do we mean by shoulders?
Head and Neck
Does the line run through the ear? If not, is it:
- Behind the line, with a ‘flattening’ of the natural curve (Kyphosis) of the neck (cervical spine)
- In front of the line, potentially with an increased curve (Lordosis) of the neck.