The effect of posture on the role of the apophysial joints in resisting intervertebral compressive forces

J Bone Joint Surg Br. 1980 Aug;62(3):358-62. doi: 10.1302/0301-620X.62B3.6447702.


Cadaveric lumbar intervertebral joints were loaded to simulate the erect standing posture (lordosis), and the erect sitting posture (slightly flexed). The results show that, after the intervertebral disc has been reduced in height by a period of sustained loading, the apophysial joints resist about 16 per cent of the intervertebral compressive forces in the erect standing posture, whereas in the erect sitting posture they resist none. The implications of this in relationship to degenerative changes and to low backache are discussed.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Back Pain / physiopathology
  • Biomechanical Phenomena*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Intervertebral Disc
  • Joints / physiology*
  • Lumbar Vertebrae / physiology
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Posture*
  • Spine / physiology*
  • Stress, Mechanical