anterior pelvic tilt influences squat mechanics

Anterior Pelvic Tilt Influence on Squat Mechanics

anterior pelvic tilt influences squat mechanicsI feel like we’ve been discussing anterior pelvic tilt lately in several articles and an Inner Circle webinar on my strategies for fixing anterior pelvic tilt.  I wanted to show a video of a great example of how a simple assessment really tells you a lot about how pelvic positioning should influence how we coach exercises such as squats and deadlifts.

If you haven’t had a chance to read my past article on how anterior pelvic tilt influences hip range of motion, you should definitely start there.

In this video, I have a great example of a client that has limited knee to chest mobility and with boney impingement.  However, if we abduct the leg a bit, it clears the rim of the hip and has full mobility with no impingement.

As you can see, because he is in anterior pelvic tilt, he is prepositioned to start the motion in hip flexion, so therefor looks like he has limited mobility.  I have a past article on how anterior pelvic tilt influence hip flexion mobility, which discusses this a little more.

While you are working on their anterior pelvic tilt, you can work around some of their limitations.  I hate when people say there is only one way to squat or deadlift.

Our anatomy is so different for each individual.

Some need a wider stance while others need more narrow.  Some need toes out while some need more neutral.  Do what works best for your body, not what the text book says you are supposed to look like.

10 replies
  1. Alexander Gachuiri Hage
    Alexander Gachuiri Hage says:

    What if his right hip was in anterior pelvic tilt and his left hip was in posterior pelvic tilt. How would you then modify conventional exercises like squats and deadlifts to fit his dysfunction?

  2. ollyht
    ollyht says:

    Thanks for posting this video Mike. I absolutely love your approach with this, and how you emphasise modifying the exercise around an individual’s anatomical set up, rather than trying to force the individual to conform to one variation of the exercise. I was just working with someone this morning with very similar issues, and was trying to explain a similar concept.

  3. 1SteveGoldrick1
    1SteveGoldrick1 says:

    I had a patient a while ago sent for hip pain that I thought was clearly an impingement issue. However his “personal trainer” I guess implanted in his brain to either squat fully or not squat at all. I tried to help him understand he could work within a depth that is comfortable for his hip and gradually as we used manual therapy we could progress into deeper ranges, but he just didn’t buy in. He ended up not coming back, which was a bit discouraging. How do you handle that when other professionals (a personal trainer at the local YMCA in this case) suggestions differ from your own as a PT

    • mikereinold
      mikereinold says:

      It’s an education process. You certainly don’t need to squat deep for it to be effective. But people want to squat deep. Our job should be to get them to do what they want to do, so I always tell people that we will work towards that, but perhaps while working on it we limit the motion a bit. realize that they probably have a deeper relationship with their personal trainer than their new PT. You have to make sure they feel like you can “relate” to them.

  4. Ant
    Ant says:

    Really interesting – squatting is largely genetic. Poles, Ukrainians, Bulgarians and Romanians tend to have a shallow acetabulum (the Dalmatian Hip) that allows a deeper squat; but, there is a high rate of hip dysplasia, especially in Poland. As opposed to the deeper hip socket seen in Celtic populations and Normandy in France that does not allow a deep squat without extra posterior pelvic tilt and potential abnormal IVD stresses. So there is absolutely not just one way to squat or deadlift. I learned this from reading Dr Stuart McGill’s work.

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