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Quadratus lumborum



Quadratus lumborum-posterior
Quadratus lumborum - posterior distance
Quadratus lumborum - posteromedial

Referred pain pattern

Quadratus lumborum - pain pattern - posterior view
Quadratus lumborum - pain pattern - lateral view

Muscle Type

  • Postural
    • Shortens when overactivated


  • Lower back pain while coughing or sneezing
  • Muscular guarding of lumbar region
  • Compensatory scoliosis
  • Functional short leg, in elevation of ilium
  • Restricted flexion of spine

Possible causes for tension

  • Lower leg length differential may cause tension in the QL as it tries to compensate
  • Trauma such as car collisions
  • Activity in which the persons needs to be forward bent, such as gardening
  • Walking/running along a slope causing an uneven height difference in the pelvis
  • Overload especially during twisted positions

Muscular attachments


Detailed version

Important functions

  • Quadratus lumborum has a major stabilizing function on the lower back
  • It has also been theorized that it has a role in stabilizing the last rib during inhalation and forced exhalation
  • The fibers of the Quadratus Lumborum also merges with the diaphragm, which makes involvement in respiratory functions even more likely


  • When there is noted dysfunction in the Quadratus Lumborum, it is important to keep in mind that this can be due to tightness in the other muscles which stabilizes the region, especially the iliopsoas, erector spinae and rectus abdominis

MyoFascial line

Deep ventral line

Additional Functional Muscles Supporting The Deep Ventral Line