BOGDUK, Nikolai

BOGDUK, Nikolai
Pages: 32-37
Year 1990
SummaryThe back muscles alone are unable to provide the extensor moment required to lift large weights, and must be aided by another source of anti-flexion moments. It has been postulated that contraction of the abdominal muscles can provide an extension moment by developing tension in the thoracolumbar fascia (TLF). Anatomical studies and a biomechanical analysis, however, reveal that the anti-flexion moment generated in this way is only very small. Too little of the abdominal musculature attaches to the TLF to generate a significant tension in it. Previous calculations of the forces in the TLF have overestimated the tension developed in it because of erroneous assumptions and interpretations of the relevant anatomy. Whatever the role played by the TLF in lifting it must be essentially independent of abdominal mechanisms. RelevanceThis study illustrates the importance of consulting or determining the anatomy integral to a biomechanical theory before undertaking calculations and ascribing the functional significance of postulated mechanisms. Controversies concerning the possible mechanisms that assist the back muscles during the act of lifting are addressed.
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