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Bend at Your Knees vs. Saving Your Back: Myth or Fact?



Have you ever heard or been told you need to bend at your knees to save your back when bending over or picking something up?


While it is not a complete myth it definitely overlooks a very large important joint that you need to bend or move through when bending, squatting, deadlifting, picking something up, etc., and that is the ability to move through your hip joint.


Let's take a look a how to or what it means to bend or move through your hip joint versus not moving through the hip joint.




In the next picture, you can see more from the anatomical perspective of what is happening to the spine with either version.




Note the difference between the two pictures above.


When we bend at the hip joint the entire spine, and pelvis move together around the hip joint.  Note where the tailbone is in either picture.  In the first picture, the tailbone is almost parallel to the floor.  In the second picture, the tailbone is pointing down towards the floor and you can see the bending in the spine as the pelvis has not moved with the spine.


Yes, bending your knees is important however, if you are not bending or moving properly through your hip joint you will continue to put undo stress on your back even if you are bending your knees. 


What causes you to not be able to move through your hips?


  • Tight muscles (glutes, hamstrings, erectors)

  • Pain

  • Non-optimal habits (squeezing the glutes, lifting the chest, breathing, etc.)

With proper training, you can learn to move through your hips again.  If today's information piqued your interest, and you are curious, reach out.  We can help.

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