The spinal column consists of 24 freely movable bones, which are supported by the
tailbone. There are several major functions of the spine. Foremost, it houses and
protects the spinal cord and nerves, allowing messages to travel from the brain to
target tissues throughout the body. Second, the spine is an integral part of the axial
skeleton from which the skull, ribs, arms and legs extend. The spine houses the
protections mechanism for the heart, lungs, and other vital organs. The cervical
spine is made up of seven segments which comprise the neck. The thoracic spine
houses the rib cage and consists of twelve segments. The lumbar spine consists of
five vertebrae, which are supported by the sacral base.
At birth, the spine consists of two primary curvatures, the thoracic spine and sacrum.
This is the reason infants have c-shaped posture for several months. Throughout the
many developmental stages of the first two years of life, the secondary curves of the
spine develop forming the neck and low back. The four curves allow for upright
posture and locomotion.
Five Crucial Milestones in Postural Development
Spinal evaluation and gentle chiropractic care during these stages can help to ensure proper
|Holding the head erect|