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Posturology ?

What is posturology ?

Qu’est-ce-que la posturologie ?Posturology is a multidisciplinary medical discipline that examines the major plumb lines in the human body. Postural pathology is an imbalance of these plumb lines, producing excess stress that causes musculoarticular pathologies and changes in the motor patterne. Postural imbalance is caused by asynchronism in one or more postural sensors : 

The causes of postural imbalance

We are all asymmetrical, owing to our physical composition, habits and lifestyle. Some of us compensate for this condition and are free of disorders. The same does not apply for some others. 

In actual fact, some circumstances such as work conditions (prolonged, repetitive poor posture) or trauma can decompensate the postural system. In addition, asynchronism in the postural sensors, as for example mandibular or visual asymmetry or even asymmetry in postural support, will produce a postural imbalance responsible for a number of pathologies.

Postural Deficiency Syndrome occurs when the regulatory centres are unable to effect a congruent synthesis of the information received by the various sensors. This syndrome indicates the discovery of damage to the sensory, transmission or information integration systems required to effect postural balance.

What is a Postural Deficiency Syndrome (P.D.S.) ?

Postural Deficiency Syndrome (or Plumb Line Postural Disorder) was described by Dr. Martins Da Cuhna in 1979. This syndrome occurs as a result of an alteration in muscle tone balance and postural balance.

P.D.S. is characterised by a clinical picture comprising stabilometric and clinical symtoms and signs :


However, there is a fourth criterion which is indispensable for diagnosis and which clearly distinguishes the approach taken by the posturologist from the conventional approach : by manipulating one or more sensory inputs from the system, certain signs of asymmetry are immediately modified before the signs and symptoms of the syndrome are eventually eliminated.

What are the pathologies frequently encountered in posturology?

A widely varying symptomatology is the effect of postural imbalance. In addition to frequent musculoskeletal discomfort (neck pain, headaches, lumbar pain, etc.), there may also be symptoms of perception deficit (dizziness, loss of balance, clumsiness, etc.) and cognitive problems (poor concentration, dyslexic disorders, fatigue, etc.).

Many pathologies are related to postural imbalance. These include:


What are tests currently conducted in Posturology ?

How should a " postural imbalance " patient be treated ?

The aim of postural treatment is to modify system input by manipulating the postural sensors for optimal reprogramming of the muscle tone. The objective is to relieve the stress pathologies and to improve sensor performance.

Treatment of patients with postural imbalance is often multidisciplinary.

Postural treatment requires the involvement of various specialists working in collaboration according to the sensors implicated in the pathology :


Each posturologist can therefore become the person directing the multidisciplinary postural treatment, but should never be a substitute for the expertise of any of the other specialists.

Postural rehabilitation

Cas cliniqueAll postural treatment must be complemented by appropriate rehabilitation to stabilise the new postural state.

This rehabilitation treatment will be specific to each category of postural imbalance.

Illustration : clinical case

Example of rehabilitation of a patient with a class 4 postural imbalance :

The equipment for postural diagnosis

Appropriate equipment is required for posture-related diagnosis as well as efficient follow-up of postural treatment.

Le matériel de diagnostic postural


The Barré vertical axis examination is based on a diagnosis of postural imbalance. It is used not only for the determination of the patient’s posture classification but also for diagnostic orientation toward the sensors involved in postural imbalance. A centring platform, a tripodal telescopic laser and a plumb line are required for this test.


The foam test orients the postural diagnosis towards the mandibular and/or visual sensors by shunting the podal afferences. 
An appropriate foam cushion is required for this test.


The Maddox test orients the diagnosis towards an asynchronism in the visual sensor. It is also used to measure the effects of postural treatment on the visual sensor.

A “Maddox rod” and a light point to be positioned on the wall at a distance of between 2 and 5 metres.



The podoscope test defines whether the footprints are symmetrical or asymmetrical. A suitable podoscope should have tangential lighting.


A manipulation table or a simple massage table are used for the scapular test.


Novalliance offers posturology equipment kits:

Posturology measurements

La mesure en posturologie

Measurements are necessary not only for quantifying muscle tone imbalance. They are also useful for quantifying the efficacy of a treatment during the therapeutic procedure as well as the efficacy of the treatment over time.

Measuring postural imbalance is also useful for sharing information on quantitative-based data with the various therapists involved in the postural treatment.

Lastly, there is no possibility of publishing research in scientific journals without the inclusion of measurements.


The testing of orthostatic positioning has been extensively studied in France by the French Posturology Association which recommended a platform for which the standards have been published (1985).

Posture View stabilometry apparatus

The Posture View apparatus is a biometric device designed for postural analysis.

This apparatus comprises a high-precision camera and software for assessing stress in the sagittal plane in the regions of the ankle, the knee, the hip, the lumbosacral hinge and the cervicodorsal hinge.

In the frontal plane, stress is assessed in the lumbosacral and the cervicodorsal hinges.

The Posture View device is used to determine the gravitational moment from the segment weight (anthropometric tables), the position of the articular centres (Posture View software), the segment’s centre of gravity (anthropometric tables).

The greater the imbalance between the joint centre and the application of body weight, the more significant the moment.

Physical stress assessment during treatment and over time is useful for measuring the efficacy of postural treatment and adjusting it over time.