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Journal Article


De Carvalho DE, Callaghan JP. Appl. Ergon. 2012; 43(5): 876-882.


Department of Kinesiology, Faculty of Applied Health Sciences, University of Waterloo, 200 University Avenue West, Waterloo, Ontario, Canada N2L 3G1.


(Copyright © 2012, Elsevier Publishing)






BACKGROUND: The use of lumbar supports has been associated with decreased reports of low back pain during driving exposures. However, there has been limited work investigating whether lumbar supports actually change spine and pelvic postures at the level of the vertebrae. PURPOSE: To investigate the effectiveness of a lumbar support in changing radiological measures of lumbar spine and pelvic postures and to examine the impact of support excursion magnitudes on these postures. METHODS: Eight male subjects were recruited with no history of back injury, pathologies or low back pain within the past 6 months. Radiographs were taken in four postures: standing, and sitting with 0 cm, 2 cm and 4 cm lumbar support prominence (LSP). RESULTS: Lumbar lordosis angle increased from 20° with no support to 25° with 2 cm support and 30° with 4 cm support. Lumbar lordosis angles were significantly different between 0 cm support and 4 cm support (p < 0.0001) and between 2 cm support and 4 cm support (p = 0.0256). Increasing lumbar support reduced the flexion at intervertebral disc joints throughout the lumbar spine, however, these remained significantly different from upright standing (p > 0.001) with the exception of L1/L2 in 4 cm support (p = 0.1381) and L5/S1 for all seated postures (p = 0.0687). All measures of pelvic posture were significantly different in sitting compared to standing (p < 0.0001), however, the lumbar support had no significant impact on seated pelvic posture. CONCLUSIONS: Lumbar supports were shown to impact the vertebral rotations of the lumbar spine yet had no effect on pelvis postures. Increasing support from the current maximum of 2 cm-4 cm resulted in increased lumbar lordosis. The changes were mostly imparted at the upper lumbar spine joints with the most marked change being exhibited at the approximate level of the lumbar support apex: in the L2/L3 joint.

Language: en


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