Background: This article provides a historical perspective and an overview of different ways of measuring sagittal plane cervical posture in clinical and research settings.
Special features: Measures of cervical posture are considered, in terms of their purpose, their reliability and validity, and their capacity to provide knowledge about cervical posture.
Summary: Despite technological advances in measurement techniques, there is still much to learn about cervical posture in terms of understanding how the neck balances the head against the force of gravity. The individual spinal segments of the neck assume different relative positions, depending on the individual's genetics; anatomical construction; occupational demands; muscle strength and endurance; as well as mental state, personality, and culture. Valid measures which can capture this objectively and reliably continue to challenge clinicians and researchers.