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J Orthop Sci. 2012 Nov;17(6):682-6. doi: 10.1007/s00776-012-0281-1. Epub 2012 Aug 23.

Sagittal lumbar and pelvic alignment in the standing and sitting positions.

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Department of Orthopedic Surgery, Tokyo Medical University, 6-7-1 Nishishinjuku, Shinjuku-ku, Tokyo 160-0023, Japan.



The sitting position has become the most common posture in today's workplace. In relation to this position, kinematic analysis of the lumbar spine is helpful in understanding the causes of low back pain and its prevention.


In this study, we investigated the relationship between sagittal lumbar alignment and pelvic alignment in the standing and sitting positions for 50 healthy adults. Lumbar lordotic angle (LLA), sacral slope (SS), pelvic tilt (PT), and pelvic incidence (PI) were measured on lateral lumbar spine standing and sitting radiographs.


Regarding changes from the standing to sitting positions, average LLA, SS, and PT were -16.6° (-49.8 %), -18.7° (-50.3 %), and 18.3° (284.8 %), respectively (P < 0.01). In the sitting position, lumbar lordosis was reduced and pelvic rotation became posterior.


This study showed that LLA decreased by approximately 50 % and PT increased by approximately 25 % in the sitting position compared with the standing position. No significant gender differences were observed for LLA, SS, and PT in the standing position. In the sitting position, however, LLA and SS were markedly larger for women.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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