Every joint in the body has a neutral position. Neutral position is defined as joint congruity. The joint spaces are even and symmetrical. The muscles around a joint in neutral position are neither contracted nor lengthened. The muscles are at their neutral physiological resting lengths where they can generate optimum power and speed.
The human skeletal system was created so that if:
- The heel is straight
- There is no pathology forcing a postural shift
- Neutral posture occurs naturally.
The distinctive features of Neutral Posture are:
- Head is balanced over the spine (ears over shoulders)
- Shoulders are straight (shoulders over hips)
- Thumbs point forward
- Pelvis is tucked in (hips over knees)
- Knees stay over the feet (when bending)
- Heels are perpendicular to the ground
This posture is innately more aesthetic and youthful in appearance, and it serves to preserve joints, ligaments, muscular strength and endurance.
The ideal efficient posture is maintained with only minimal muscular effort and is the result of sound skeletal structure, soft tissue integrity and neurological control. Optimal balance of the spine’s normal physiological curves contributes to healthy posture.1
1 Kim Christensen, DC, DACRB, CCSP. Postural Stability: Its Role in Chiropractic Care.