Cervical Flexion Syndrome

Cervical Flexion Syndrome


Neck pain due to an excessively straight neck and poor tolerance for cervical flexion.  Straightening the neck or flexing the neck will cause pain.  This is typical in an individual who has been participating in activities to practice “perfect posture” such as a military or dance posture.  This “perfect posture” actually emphasizes excessive thoracic extension and therefore the individual has to compensate through the cervical spine into flexion.

Kinetic Control / Uncontrolled Movement Tests:

  • Lower Cervical Flexion Control Tests:
  1. Occiput Lift Test
  2. Thoracic Flexion Test
  3. Overhead Arm Lift Test
  • Upper Cervical Flexion Control Tests:
  1. Forward Head Lean Test
  2. Arm Extension Test


  • Improve activation and strength of intrinsic cervical extensors.
  • Improve thoracic flexion during every day activities.
  • Cue increased cervical extension during regular posture.

These are primarily sourced from work by the great Shirley Sahrmann PhD. I use these pages as a personal reference for this type of information.


4 thoughts on “Cervical Flexion Syndrome

    1. Those would be local muscles (eg. cervical multifidus or some of the smaller muscles that only cross 1-3 spinal segments). Global extensors cross many more levels. If you pivot at your ears as you look up at the ceiling, you should be able to palpate that your neck is staying relatively more relaxed than if you take your whole head backwards. That’s an example of local activation.

  1. Robert Stalker MD Dip. Sport Med

    You write this like it is your original material and it is not! Give credit to the originators or get this plagiarized material off the internet. The material is copyrighted and you are putting yourself in legal jeopardy.

    1. I’m not claiming it is mine. I use this as a reference for myself vs. going into the books. I’ll add some more information to indicate my sources though.

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