2757 A University Dr. Auburn Hills, MI
New Patient Line: (248) 598 - 4002
Gentle Care. Remarkable results.

From An Upper Cervical Chiropractic Perspective

Latest Articles from Dr. Zachary Ward - Life In Alignment Chiropractic, Lc - Auburn Hills MI

Category Archives: Chiropractic Conditions

Improving upright posture and pelvis alignment in a long distance runner

Improving upright posture and pelvis alignment in a long distance runner

Can long distance runners improve their overall body posture by focusing on the head-to-neck alignment? Yes and no. It depends on if they are self-correcting or receiving a correction. This case study from our practice and a little bit of research sheds light on this important topic.

Focusing on the hips, knees, and ankles

When long distance runners begin to investigate the possibility of improving their running posture or the mechanics of their stride (also known as gait analysis), they are often told to focus on their hips, knees, and ankles.

Research into changing the position of the head, neck, shoulders, and arms while running has shown little effect on the amount of energy expended by runners, as detailed by this helpful article summarizing research at Gonzaga University.

The runner focusing on keeping his or her head upright can change the runner’s perception of how much energy they are putting into running. And this is important and shouldn’t be discounted on the psychology of how the runner is pacing. But the point remains: the overall heart rate and oxygen use haven’t been shown to change as the head/neck position changes, as the runner is self-correcting.

So, if changing running posture is to help runners, then most of the focus is placed on changes from the the waist down.

The common conception is that working locally on the pelvis is the best way to help the hips, working locally on the knees is the best way to help the knees, and working on the ankles is the best way to help the ankles.

That is why gait feedback, muscle training, and rehabilitation is almost always focused on the waist downward.

This makes such obvious sense, and the results are often substantial enough that many chiropractors, physical therapists, and other body workers don’t consider the possibility of investigating the alignment of the head/neck on the posture and gait of runners.

Especially when the consensus is that changing head position doesn’t really affect performance.

The inter-relationship between the base of the skull, the pelvis, and the lower extremities

This blog post and single video are not going to solve the mysteries of the universe about running, gait analysis, and posture. But what I hope it does do is help some runners, other athletes, and the providers that serve them to stand back and take a global view of the posture and its relationship with the base of the skull.


Chiropractic specialists of the top of the neck (upper cervical chiropractors) have a universal experience in seeing the shift of the pelvis to a more balanced position seen in less rotation, less unleveling of the hip (ilium), and less length length deficiency (short leg).

We also tend to see a shift towards an improved upright posture (less thoracic or lumbar list) when viewing the body from the front, and less of a forward lean (forward head posture) when viewing the body from the side.

These are accomplished with the gentle release of the muscles and joints at the base of the skull.

The video embedded in this post is one example of the shifts possible when the head-to-neck alignment improves – not when the runner attempts to self-correct – but when the upper cervical specialist unlocks the posture via the neck, shifting the pelvis, and even the position of the knee and the foot.

What’s the takeaway for long distance runners and providers who focus on gait analysis in order to help their running patients?

Shifts in head-to-neck alignment, when provided by chiropractors who practice these upper neck procedures provides an avenue to shift global posture and pelvic posture that can enhance and even provide a basis for future fine tuning.

In other words, unlock the neck and you can’t help but unlock the pelvis. And that will have an affect on performance in many cases.

Read more: Runner’s Knee and Upper Cervical Chiropractic

Save

Save

Save

Can babies have posture problems?

Can babies have posture problems?

How do you know if baby is having a problem if she can’t speak? Can moms and dads be trained to see the stress their baby is feeling? Can babies have posture problems in the same way that adults can have posture problems? We look at the common but rarely recognized posture problems in babies… Continue Reading

Scoliosis in middle age: common questions and one woman’s story

I have scoliosis and I’m middle aged. Is it too late for me to get help from a chiropractor? Plus… One woman’s story after four weeks of spinal care with scoliosis And answering your common questions about scoliosis in adulthood by a doctor who works with adults with scoliosis Most scoliosis information focuses on children… Continue Reading

I have arthritis – can chiropractic still help me?

I have arthritis – can chiropractic still help me?

“I’ve been told I have a lot of arthritis in my spine…can you still help me?” Not a month goes by when I’m not asked that question by a patient. Usually an older patient – a senior citizen – but sometimes I’m asked by a middle aged patients as well. Any question about arthritis and… Continue Reading

Why Patients Love Our Chiropractic Care

Upper cervical chiropractic at Life In Alignment is different. And different is good.

Fewer adjustments

Fewer adjustments

There are common patterns to spinal breakdown that must be corrected for the best changes in symptoms. We focus on the areas that get the most return on your investment.

Results you can see

Results you can see

All healing takes time. But outside evidence of positive inside changes should be quick in coming. View images from the before and after gallery to see what kind of results you might be able to see in your own spine.

What you need meets what you want

What you need meets what you want

Relief care, corrective care, or long term wellness.Find out what it's going to take for each, and then pick the plan that fits your goals, budget, and lifestyle.
Back to top