How to Correct Anterior Pelvic Tilt in 4 Easy Steps (Daily Corrective Routine Included)

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Have you been suffering from anterior pelvic tilt and want to know how to correct it? You’ve arrived at the right place. This article provides simple exercises and step-by-step instructions for correcting anterior pelvic tilt.
Anterior pelvic tilt, also known as “lower crossed syndrome,” is becoming more common for two reasons:

  1. The increased amount of sedentary time we’ve adapted as a result of the lifestyles most of us lead.
  2. 2. Poor postural habits we’ve adapted as a result of the lifestyles most of us lead.
    Unfortunately, anterior pelvic tilt can not only limit your lifting gains but also increase your risk of injury. That’s why we discuss many different techniques and tips for improving posture and issues related to posture- so you can transform your body in the most time-efficient and safest way possible:

    Why Is Anterior Pelvic Tilt Harmful?
    It is not something that should be overlooked! Because it not only causes lower back pain, but it can also inhibit the gluteal muscle group. The gluteus maximus, gluteus medius, and gluteus minimus are all included.
    The combination of these effects results in a reduced range of motion at the joint. In addition, force production capabilities have been reduced. Pain and discomfort can be long-term consequences of joint inflexibility. Reduced force production can also impair gym performance. Key compound movements such as deadlifts and squats, in particular, can be effected.
    The following is an outline of the article:
    • What anterior pelvic tilt is; • What causes some of the negative consequences associated with the condition; • The four essential steps to easily correct anterior pelvic tilt; and • A 10-minute corrective routine that can be used daily.
    Let’s get started without further ado.
    Anterior Pelvic Tilt: What Is It?

The pelvis is a composite bone made up of several bones:
The sacrum and coccyx are located posteriorly, while the ilium, ischium, and pubis are located anteriorly.
To provide stability, the bones of the pelvis are firmly fused through fibrous joints. This is due to the fact that this critical region is used for almost all bodily movements. The pelvis performs critical functions such as articulating the femoral head. The femoral head attaches to the acetabulum and is protected by two key ligaments. The iliofemoral and ischiofemoral ligaments
What Is the Symptom of Anterior Pelvic Tilt?
Forward tilting of the pelvic girdle, as the entire region is known, changes an individual’s postural pattern, causing the hips to be pushed back.

  1. Glutes will stick back more than usual, and 3. Abdomen will protrude in front.
    The cumulative effect of these changes is an emphasis on the arch in one’s lower back. Curvature of the lower spine is normal. However, this can be exacerbated by a number of factors (discussed in the following paragraphs) and result in a more pronounced concave curvature in the lumbar region of the spine.
    How Can I Tell If I Have Anterior Pelvic Tilt?
    The anterior pelvic tilt is fairly well defined. The following are some of its most common symptoms:
    • Lower back ache (Youdas et al. 2000)
    • Chronic lower back tightness • Standing knee hyperextension • Low gluteal muscle activation • Tight hamstring muscles
    A visual assessment of one’s normal relaxed posture (using the image above as a guide) in conjunction with the symptoms listed above can be used to self-diagnose anterior pelvic tilt. If you have this condition, don’t worry. It’s not only simple to learn, but it’s also simple to correct! Continue reading to find out how.
    What Is the Cause of Anterior Pelvic Tilt?
    Anterior pelvic tilt can be caused by a variety of factors. When the underlying cause of a problem is identified, it is much easier to reduce the causing factors and correct the issues at the source:
    Cause 1: Long periods of sitting with poor posture.
    Many people’s jobs (or hobbies) require them to sit for long periods of time. This in and of itself has been linked to a slew of health risks. Sitting in an anteriorly pelvic tilted position with poor posture can lead to a variety of musculoskeletal issues.
    Physical inactivity is the second cause.
    Postural issues can be alleviated by strengthening the muscles that control body posture through targeted, regular exercise.
    Genetic Predispositions are the third cause (Bone Structure)
    The pelvis is a complicated joint that is held together by a slew of muscles, ligaments, and tendons. The pelvic bones (and the placement/strength/etc. of these fibrous tissues) are frequently genetically controlled.
    Cause 4: Inadequate Exercise Technique (Excessive Lower Back Arching During Squat Or Deadlift)
    Improper form keeps your trainer awake at night… it also causes a slew of postural issues, which have a cascading effect.
    Cause 4: Inadequate Strength Training (Inadequate Glutes/Ab Training)
    A well-balanced workout routine includes training all of the muscles in the body and focusing on muscles on both sides of joints. Postural muscles are often more difficult to train and, as a result, are often overlooked when developing a gym routine.
    Sports-related muscle imbalances are cause number five.
    Sports frequently emphasize the work of certain muscles over others. These strength imbalances can lead to a slew of issues that manifest in a variety of ways.
    Foot pronation is the sixth cause.
    Many postural problems begin on the ground. Improper foot ergonomics can have unintended consequences. This is due to the fact that they have a negative impact on posture. As well as requiring compensatory adjustments in the rest of the body.
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Despite all of these potential contributing factors, anterior pelvic tilt is most commonly caused by prolonged periods of sitting with poor posture. Take a look at the images below.
• Left: exhibits anterior pelvic tilt when sitting; • Right: exhibits posterior pelvic tilt in a similar sitting position; • Neutral: falls somewhere in the middle and is ideal!

It’s worth noting that a slight anterior pelvic tilt is perfectly normal. According to research, approximately 85 percent of healthy males and 75 percent of healthy females have a slight anterior pelvic tilt.
A “normal” degree of tilt looks like the image below.

Individual differences exist in ‘Normal’ Tilt Levels.
Despite this, those with a more prominent anterior pelvic tilt may experience problems.
Bodies react differently to strain and what might be considered a normal level of tilt. And what is well tolerated in one person may cause significant postural discomfort in another. When people with excessive anterior pelvic tilt lift weights, their discomforts can worsen. Weight training that focuses on the muscles of the lower back/pelvic girdle, in particular, can tip an already unbalanced muscle core over the edge.
Performing loaded movements with an anterior pelvic tilt, such as the squat and deadlift, emphasizes and focuses the stress on the lower back. It also limits the amount of force that can be generated during the exercise. Prolonged activity can cause lower back tightness and pain.
This chronic tightness can help to avoid:

  1. Consistent progress in the gym. You will not be able to lift heavier loads.
  2. Proper activation of the gluteal muscles, which are essential for a variety of exercises such as deadlifts.
    If this is the case for you, it is imperative that you address it as soon as possible. It’s not just to alleviate the pain associated with the condition. But also to allow for gym improvements that go hand in hand with progressive increases in force production.
    The “Science” of Correcting Anterior Pelvic Tilt
    Before diving into the quick and easy corrective routine, it is critical to understand the reasoning and evidence for it.
    According to research, certain muscles become overactive and others become underactive over time. The resulting imbalance causes anterior pelvic tilt.
    In a typical case:
    • The abs (rectus abdominus, transverses abdominus, internal obliques, and external obliques), as well as the glutes, are weakened (maximus, medius, and minimus)
    • The hipflexor muscles (iliacus, psoas, and recuts femoris) and the erector spinae muscle group become overactive.
    The muscles in question are depicted in the photo below. It does not require a thorough understanding of human anatomy to recognize that the imbalance caused by over/underactivation of the highlighted muscle groups can result in a forward tilting of the pelvic girdle.

How does one approach resolving this problem? You should concentrate on the following two overarching principles:
Principle 1: Exercising Overactive Muscles
Concentrate on the hip flexors. Tightness in the erector spinae is a result, not a cause, of the forward-tilted pelvis. Working on the iliopsoas muscles, which cause hip flexion, is therefore critical. If you have anterior pelvic tilt, your hamstrings may feel tight as well. Tightness in this muscle group is also a result of, rather than a cause of, the abnormal pelvic tilt.
While stretching the hamstrings is beneficial, it will not solve the problem. Why? Because the anterior pelvic tilt position of your pelvis “pre-stretches” the hamstrings. This gives the impression that they’re tense. Stretching them often causes more harm than good.
Principle 2: Increasing Muscle Activity in Underactive Muscles
As previously stated, the abdominal muscle group and glutes are the two main muscles to strengthen in order to alleviate the cause of anterior pelvic tilt. People who have anterior pelvic tilt frequently have difficulty activating the glutes and relaxing the hip flexors. Having said that, the source of the weakness is clear. Given this proclivity, exercising caution when strengthening the underactive musculature around the pelvic girdle is advised.

The routine outlined below has been meticulously chosen to maximize glute activation. And it is specific to the problems that those with anterior pelvic tilt face.
The first step in the prescribed corrective routine will be to learn how to properly maneuver your pelvis. This preamble is absolutely necessary before implementing the exercises listed below and available elsewhere on the internet. These exercises will be ineffective unless you have the control required to manipulate pelvic position.
So, without further ado, let’s get into the specifics of our four-step procedure.
Step 1: Understand Posterior Pelvic Tilt.
To begin, you must learn how to properly posteriorly tilt your pelvis. If you don’t, your body will try to trick you when it comes to corrective stretches and exercises. As you can imagine, this will not be advantageous to you.
Exercise 1: Pelvic Tilts While Lying
Practice posterior tilting your pelvis while lying on the ground is an easy way to learn this movement. The ground’s support and increased stability in this position are ideal for transitioning into the more complex exercises that will follow.

  1. Begin by lying on your back with your knees flexed and pointing upwards. You’ll probably notice a gap between your lower back and the ground.
  2. Push your lower back flat against the ground, flattening it. Squeeze (and activate) your glutes at the same time. Make sure your pelvis is tilted to allow for this movement. The posterior pelvic tilt is the name given to this action.
  3. Return to your starting position by relaxing your glutes. Tilt your hip up and forward. Also, shift your weight away from the ground. This opens up a space between your lower back and the ground.
  4. You have an anterior pelvic tilt now.

The anteriorly tilted position is depicted in the photo above. The posterior pelvic tilted position is shown below.
Going back and forth between the two positions (for about 10 repetitions) will help you become more comfortable with controlling your pelvic tilt. This exercise can be done several times throughout the day. Or as needed on a daily basis, until adequate comfort is achieved.
Standing Pelvic Tilts (Exercise 2)
In this position, you should repeat the previously discussed exercise in a standing position. The exercise is no longer as controlled as it once was. You no longer have the support and stability that you had when you did the exercise on the ground. Despite this modification, the movement is nearly identical. Once you’ve mastered exercise 1, you’ll be able to perform exercise 2 with much greater ease.

  1. Take a relaxed stance with your feet shoulder-width apart.
  2. Next, squeeze the glutes to achieve a posterior pelvic tilt.
    The top picture (number 1) depicts the anterior pelvic tilted position, while the bottom picture (number 2) depicts the posterior pelvic tilted position. The blue arrows in the image indicate the direction of movement of the lower back and glutes.
    Backward movement of the lower back and posterior tilting of the pelvic girdle will move you from the anterior to the posterior tilted position. The body will then be returned to its anterior tilted position by the opposite movement. You can repeat this movement several times (about ten times) to achieve the desired results. You can do this throughout the day or on consecutive days if you prefer.
    Step 2: Glutes and abdominals must be strengthened.
    The first step was to learn to tilt your pelvis posteriorly. The strength and control gained in the first steps can be used to progress to gluteal and abdominal muscle strengthening exercises.
    Bodyweight Hip Thrusts (Exercise 1)
    The first exercise keeps the glutes in shape and targets them! The hip thrust is an excellent unloaded exercise for targeting one of the two main muscle groups involved in anterior pelvic tilt.

The key, however, is to perform the exercise correctly.
The image below will aid in visualizing the movement.

  1. Start with your shoulder on the bench and your feet on the ground.
  2. Next, raise your hips and point them toward the ceiling. Your shoulder blades should not be allowed to leave the bench. When the upward movement is complete, you should place your feet so that your shins remain vertical.
    It may take a few tries to figure out how far away from the bench to place your feet at first. By arching the lower back, the body attempts to compensate for a lack of stability throughout the range of this movement. You must be aware of this compensation and avoid it at all costs. Only then can the desired muscle group, namely the glutes, be activated.
    What Is the Secret to Doing Bodyweight Hip Thrusts?
    The key to completing this movement is to: • Keep your lower back straight.
    • And, as discussed in Part 1, posteriorly tilting your pelvis throughout the entire movement.

Posterior pelvic tilting should allow your body to line up so that you can draw a straight line from your head to your knees. You should also squeeze your glutes and feel them contract.
Alternatively, glute bridges (with your back to the floor) and the same protocol can be used. The goal of a weighted protocol is to eventually progress to posterior pelvic tilt. Only with continued application over time will this allow for greater gluteal strengthening.

RKC Plank is the second exercise.
The following exercise is designed to strengthen the abdominal muscles. This is the second half of those involved in pelvic tilting.
There are numerous exercises available that aim to target the abs. Those who suffer from anterior pelvic tilt should choose exercises that involve the hip flexors as little as possible. As previously stated, these muscles are already more active than they should be.
Why Are RKC Planks Useful?
The RKC plank is a great example of an exercise that checks all of the boxes. RKC planks are nearly identical to standard planks. However, they are especially beneficial for those who have an anterior pelvic tilt. That’s because they contribute to the completion of everything we desire:

  1. Increase abdominal muscle engagement
  2. Assist in reducing hip-flexor involvement
  3. Assist in the strengthening of the gluteal muscle group
    Bret Contreras’ EMG analysis of muscle activity revealed that the RKC plank resulted in: • 4x higher lower abdominal muscle activation and • 2x higher internal oblique activation when compared to the standard plank.
    But, as always, the key is to execute these planks correctly. Only then will you be able to reap the full benefits.
    What Muscles Are Activated by RKC Planks?

The RKC plank is shown with the key target groups highlighted in red and labeled. The hands are interlocked, the feet are slightly wider than shoulder width apart, and the pelvis is posteriorly tilted to allow for more gluteal and abdominal muscle activation.
How to Do the RKC Plank Correctly
Here are some key points to keep in mind to ensure that this exercise is carried out correctly:

  1. Begin in a standard plank position, with elbows and feet shoulder-width apart. Only this time, your hands will be interlocked and your feet will be slightly wider than usual.
  2. Activate your abs by consciously drawing your belly button towards your spine (in the upwards direction).
  3. Next, posteriorly pelvic tilt your hips by squeezing your glutes and keeping them contracted while holding the plank. This should be a second nature to you by now. Apply what you learned and practiced in the first two exercises.
  4. Maintain this position as long as possible. Continue to activate your glutes while keeping your lower back from arching. Keep an eye on the time.
    For subsequent iterations, you can increase the time in small increments. Nonetheless, you must remain vigilant in ensuring that each component is carried out correctly.
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    Step 3: Hip Flexor Stretching
    Stretching the overactive hip flexor muscles has been shown in numerous studies to help reduce the degree of anterior pelvic tilt over time. And lead to a reduction in tension and pain in this area.
    Psoas Stretch (Exercise 1)
    The first stretch is known as the “lunge stretch.” Many people are aware of this stretch but do not perform it correctly. When done correctly, this stretch allows you to concentrate on the psoas muscle.

How to Do the Psoas Stretch Correctly
Use the following hints to properly perform this stretch:

  1. Take a lunge position. Both knees should be bent at 90 degrees.
  2. Tighten your abdominal muscles. You can do this by visualizing your belly button moving towards your spine. Make sure your hips are in the posterior pelvic tilt position. The goal is to feel a deep stretch in your back leg’s hip flexors. Many people will initially believe that this position already provides adequate stretching. Consider image 1. 3. To achieve a deeper stretch, maintain your posterior pelvic tilt and lean forward slightly while contracting your abdominal muscles. 4. For an even deeper stretch, rotate your trunk region (upper body) in the opposite direction of your forward planted leg. After a few sessions of more basic stretching, these steps can be progressed to. This is due to the fact that they require more comfort with stretch and postural stability. Take a look at Figure 3. Repeat the stretch with the other foot in front, paying close attention to your posture. Hold each side for about 10 deep breaths to avoid having to count or time.

Stretching the Rectus Femoris (Exercise 2)
The second stretch shown here is designed to specifically target the rectus femoris. The hip flexors are made up of this and the iliopsoas. In people with anterior pelvic tilt, this muscle is tighter than the iliopsoas.
How to Do a Rectus Femoris Stretch
To do this stretch, you must:

  1. Firmly plant your forward foot on the ground. Bend your knees, with the back foot making knee contact with the ground (see picture below). Support the back foot with a bench or couch for added stability.
  2. Tighten your abdominal muscles. You can do this by bringing your belly button closer to your spine. As well as moving your hips into the posterior pelvic tilt position, with which you are now acquainted.
    You should feel a deep stretch down the front of your thigh as you achieve this position. You can move slightly forward and away from the bench to make your back knee less bent for a less intense stretch, or move closer to the bench for a more intense stretch.

To participate in hip joint flexion, stretch the rectus femoris muscle, which is part of the quadriceps and crosses the hip joint. Here are two options: using a bench (left) and not using a bench (right).
The same stretch can also be done without the use of a bench. Hold onto something for balance, then raise your back leg towards your buttocks. Change the forward leg and take 10 deep breaths on each side.
Exercise 3: Iliopsoas Stretching While Lying Down

  1. Take a seat on the edge of your bed. Your feet should be flat on the ground and hang off the edge of the bed. You can prepare for the stretch in this manner.
  2. Lie down on your back on the bed. Your feet should still be protruding over the edge. Depending on the height of the bed and the length of your legs, you may find yourself planted on the ground.
  3. Raise one leg off the ground, bending the knee.
  4. Bring your thigh as close to your chest as possible. To keep this leg in place, use both hands interlocked together and wrapped around it (close to the chest). The gluteal region and upper hamstring of the lifted leg will stretch.
    What Is the Goal of the Iliopsoas Stretch When You’re Laying Down?
    The primary goal of this position is to stretch the iliopsoas muscle in the leg that is still hanging over the edge of the bed. When one leg is lifted, the other leg is passively stretched as the iliopsoas muscle lengthens. All you have to do is let gravity do its thing!
    And, while in this position, perform the previously mastered posterior tilting of the pelvic girdle.
    To increase the stretch, do the following: • Pull the bent leg closer to the chest; and/or thrust your hip upward, towards the ceiling, as in exercise one.
    The number of breaths you take can be used to calculate the length of time. Hold the pose for 10 deep breaths with each leg, then alternate and stretch the other leg.
    4th step: Incorporate This Into Your Daily Corrective Routine
    To summarize this article, here is a corrective routine that incorporates all of the exercises I previously discussed. This list can be used to incorporate the set of stretches and exercises into your daily routine.
    1 set of 10 reps of Lying Pelvic Tilts
    1 set of 10 reps of standing pelvic tilts
    3 sets of 10+ reps of bodyweight hip thrusts
    2 sets of max holds on the RKC Plank
    Lunge Stretch: Perform two sets of 30 second holds on each leg.
    Stretching the Rectus Femoris: 2 sets of 30 second holds on each leg
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Takeaway
When it comes to correcting anterior pelvic tilt, the most important factors that will determine your success are frequency and diligence. These exercises can be done at home. So, do your best to do these on a daily basis. If you do this, you will notice significant improvements very quickly.
Another thing to keep in mind is that you should be conscious of your posture throughout the day and in the gym. If you sit or stand for long periods of time during the day, use the information in this article to keep your pelvis in a more neutral position. This is what will keep your anterior pelvic tilt from worsening or returning after it has been corrected!
Similarly, when performing movements in the gym such as the squat and deadlift, you must teach yourself how to maintain a neutral pelvis…

BEWARE OF ARCHING YOUR BACK!!! This will help you improve your strength, especially in your leg workouts.

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