A neutral pelvis is the foundation for almost every exercise I teach, and considering how often I say it possibly my favorite phrase. It’s so important to me because having this central piece of your body in its proper place allows your pelvic floor to respond appropriately, your legs to move freely, and even your sacrum, the small section of vertebra at the bottom of your spine, to move as it needs to.
For this exercise you’ll need two unsharpened pencils (or other identically sized sticks) and a mirror. To find your neutral pelvis, first locate the bones that stick out in front of your “hips”. These are called the Anterior Superior Iliac Spines, or ASIS. Place one of the pencils on that point. The other goes on the center of your pubic bone.
Now stand with your side to the mirror, and notice where the pencils are relative to each other. If you tuck your pelvis, you’ll see the bottom pencil sticking out more. If you over-arch your back, the bottom pencil will slide back and the top one will be forward. In a neutral pelvis they should end at the exact same place.
(Camera angle’s kind of wonky; I promise you the one on the far right is neutral).
To use more technical terms, your pelvis is in neutral when the ASIS and pubic symphysis are in the same plane perpendicular to the floor.
You can also use just your fingers to find this orientation.
Notice how, when the pelvis is neutral, the lumbar curve is preserved.
If you habitually tuck your pelvis (and most people do) this may feel like you’re sticking your butt out. That’s ok, I promise you, this is normal. As you bring more attention to your alignment a neutral pelvis, just like straight feet, will soon start to feel natural.