Most bike fitters will have a good idea of a clients flexibility having seen how they are during the course of a bike fit but you can also get a good idea of this if you are a general bike shop, please look at the examples below to get a run down of how our three flexibility levels are worked out.
Posterior / Backward Pelvic Tilt
Under 65° Lumbar Angle
Someone who is classed as “NOT FLEXIBLE” will generally have quite a rounded / curved back, not much lower lumbar flexibility due to the backward pelvic tilt and the inability to reach past the middle of the lower leg (Tibia).
Middle / Neutral Pelvic Tilt
65° – 85° Lumbar Angle
Someone who is classed as “FAIRLY FLEXIBLE” will generally have a slightly flatter lower back with less curvature due to the neutral pelvic tilt, with more lower lumbar flexibility and the ability to reach down to the ankle or toes.
Forward / Anterior Pelvic tilt
Over 85° Lumbar Angle
Someone who is classed as “VERY FLEXIBLE” will generally have a much flatter lower back but with lots of lower lumbar flexibility due to the forward pelvic tilt and the ability to reach past the toes and sometimes even with their hands flat on the ground
ADVANCED METHOD TO CHECK YOUR CUSTOMERS LUMBAR FLEXIBILITY
The method in the diagrams above will give you a basic simple way to test your customers lumbar flexibility, however there is a more advanced method where you can work out the actual lumbar angle for a more accurate result.
What you will need
- Somewhere the customer can stand
- Digital angle meter or smart phone with angle meter app installed – We have found a reliable app is Angle Meter available on the app store but any similar app will work fine.
With the customer standing up completely straight, place your Smart Phone or angle measuring device on to the customers lower back against the pelvis posteriorly / lower lumbar area just below the last vertebrae, ensure that the angle device or app is calibrated to zero at this point.
Have your customer lean forward and go down to touch the toes or as far as they comfortably can, ensuring the legs are kept completely straight with no bend at the knee and take the maximum angle reading.
Select the correct level of flexibility for your customer and move on to the next step
- Not Flexible = Under 65° Lumbar Angle
- Fairly Flexible = 65° – 85° Lumbar Angle
- Very Flexible = Over 85° Lumbar Angle