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Neutral spine:
– Refers to the position of the spine when it maintains it’s “normal” curves
– Curves vary person to person, so neutral will not necessarily look the same from one person to the other
– Neutral spine changes with positional changes: hook-lying vs. table top position but should not cause complete loss of curves (one or all)
– Neutral position should never be painful or uncomfortable for a person
– Forcing a change in spinal curve to make it seem more neutral is often the cause of injury.

Pros to neutral spine:
– Natural spine position
– Is the position that you would use in everyday life (walking, sitting, lifting)
– Strengthens the body in the functional /neutral position –
– Stabilizes the spine where the curves have the greatest shock absorption potential

Flat Back:
– It refers to posterior pelvic tilt where the lumbar spine has been flattened either intentionally or not.
– Classical Pilates exercises are all done in flat back

Pros to flat back:
– Supports the spine throughout the exercise
– Safer for clients with instabilities
– Provides feedback for the client (it is easier to feel when the spine lifts off the ground)