Lower Crossed Syndrome: Addressing a Common Condition

Holly Dybas, DPT

Last month, we introduced our Aging Expertly series through our Facebook and Instagram pages. While that series continues, we are adding a new series about a pretty common condition called Lower Crossed Syndrome. You may not have heard of this condition before, but chances are you or someone you know has experienced it.

Even otherwise well-conditioned people can suffer from lower crossed syndrome. Sitting for long periods is one of the major culprits. If we spend all day sitting at a desk, some of our muscles weaken, while others are pulled tight, creating an imbalance through the core (lower back, hips, glutes, abdominals and pelvis). With lower crossed syndrome, the abs and glutes weaken while the inner hip (iliopsoas) and lower back (erector spinae) muscles tighten.

Typically, this condition causes the lower back to arch with the abdomen protruding forward and the glutes pushing backward. A forward head lean can also contribute. Low back pain and tight hips are the most common complaints.

Addressing Lower Crossed Syndrome means loosening the “tight cross” (spine and hips) and strengthening the “weak cross” (abs and glutes). These are great core exercises and stretches that will help you build a strong foundation, be more mobile and help keep you pain-free, so you can do the things you want to do. Of course, these exercises are great for you even if you don’t suffer from lower crossed syndrome.

Our series will show you one stretch or strengthening exercise at a time designed to specifically target these areas. Follow us on Facebook and/or Instagram, try them out, and let us know what you think! Feel free to ask questions in the comments below the posts.

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