Healthcare and Medicine Reference
Superficial back line
Fig. 3.32 Our seemingly
solid, one-piece skull is
actually formed from two
sources. Looking at the skull
of primitive chordates and
early fish, we see that these
animals had a cranium but no
facial bones. The neurocranial
part of our skull is an
extension of the spine, while
the viscerocranial facial
structures develop from our
branchial apparatus. The SBL
stops near the forward end of
that now join with the more ancient neurocranium to
form our familiar skull (Fig. 3.32).
General movement treatment
A generally mobile and motile SBL allows trunk and hip
flexion with the knees extended, and creates trunk
hyperextension, knee flexion, and plantar flexion. Thus,
the various types of forward bends are all good ways to
stretch the line as a whole or to isolate parts, while pos-
tural hyperextension is a mark of hypertonus or short-
ening of the SBL myofascia. Extension exercises would
engage the SBL and tonify it where necessary.
NOTE: These stretches, mostly drawn from yoga asanas, are
included for clarity and inspiration. Attempting them your-
self or putting clients into the stretches without proper prepa-
ration and training can cause an injury or negative result.
Use caution, get trained, or refer.
Overall stretches (in an ascending scale of difficulty)
include a Seated Forward Bend (Fig. 3.33A), Standing
Forward Bend (Fig. 3.33B), the Downward-Facing Dog
(Fig. 3.33C), and the Plow position (Fig. 3.33D).
The child's pose can be used to stretch the fascia of
the erectors and scalp. The shoulder stand is specific
to the upper back and neck part of the SBL. A forward
bend leaning onto a table will isolate the leg portion of
For those with access, rolling prone over a large phys-
ioball provides a good way to relax the SBL as a
Fig. 3.33 There are many different stretches, easy and difficult, for
the parts and the whole of the SBL.