Women’s Epidemic Round Back Posture
• Up to fifty-one percent of healthy women from ages twenty to sixty-four are kyphotic in their normal posture.(1)
• Compared to younger and older age groups, the most dramatic decline in thoracic extension mobility occurs in women
in their thirties and forties.(2)
• Beyond approximately age forty, the rate of increase in thoracic kyphosis is much higher in women than men.(3)
• An increased thoracic kyphosis occurs during pregnancy.(4)
• An increased thoracic kyphosis is characteristic of women who habitually wear high-heeled shoes.(5)
• An increased thoracic kyphosis is characteristic of women who overdevelop the upper rectus abdominis muscle with sit-ups
• A woman’s breast development increases the forward bending moment on the thoracic spine via the rib cage.
• A habitual postural kyphosis can play a role in bone remodeling among healthy premenopausal women.(1)
• T11 and T12, the vertebrae located at the “hinge area” for spinal flexion, are the most frequently deformed vertebrae in
postmenopausal women. (8) (This T11 - T12 spinal region is the exact location of the lower thoracic support with the
YogaBack for Driving and the ZACKBACK Posture Chair. As a result, the hinging forward and downward of the rib cage
is prevented, correcting a round back/round shoulders posture.)
1. Cutler, W.B., Friedmann, E., and Geneovese-Stone, E.: Prevalence of kyphosis in a healthy sample of pre- and postmenopausal women.
American Journal of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, 72:219-225, 1993.
2. O’Gorman, H., and Jull, G.: Thoracic kyphosis and mobility: the effect of age. Physiotherapy Practice, 3:154-162, 1987.
3. Fon, G.T., Pitt, M.J., and Thies, A.C.: Thoracic kyphosis: range in normal subjects. American Journal of Roentgenology, 134:979-983, 1980.
4. Bullock, J.E., Jull, G.A., and Bullock, M.I.: The relationship of low back pain to postural changes during pregnancy.
The Australian Journal of Physiotherapy, 33:10-17, 1987.
5. Antioch College Studies: The Effects of Modern Shoes Upon Proper Body Mechanics. Yellow Springs, Antioch College, 1931.
6. Zacharkow, D.: Posture: Sitting, Standing, Chair Design and Exercise. Springfield, Thomas, 1988.
7. Zacharkow, D.: ZACKBACK Sitting. Rochester, ZACKBACK International, 1998.
8. Puche, R.C., et al.: The natural history of kyphosis in postmenopausal women. Bone, 17:239-246, 1995.
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