Seat Cushion Shape for Pelvic Control in Neuromotor Issues


Date: 9/29/20 at 3 pm ET
Credit: .1 CEU
Presenter: Jean Anne Zollars, PT, DPT, MA
Medical Terminology, ATP/SMS Prep Content, Intermediate/Advanced Level



This course focuses on methods to stabilize the pelvis in clients with abnormal neuromotor control, such as children with cerebral palsy or persons with traumatic brain injury. How can we help to control or manage the pelvis in our clients that tend to thrust or slide forward in their seat cushion? We will look at the biomechanics of both the thrusting motion and creating pelvic stability. Where and at what direction do forces need to be applied to limit the thrusting motion? Beyond the typical anterior pelvic support (pelvic positioning belt), how can we apply support to the posterior sacrum and in front of the ischial tuberosities to help control the position of the pelvis? We will discuss the appropriate measurements and shape of the pre-ischial shelf to create an anti-thrust block.

Learning Outcomes:

  • Participants will be able to describe the biomechanics of stabilizing the pelvis in clients who exhibit pelvic thrusting with extensor spasticity.
  • Participants will be able to differentiate between a pre-ischial shelf (or block that prevents sliding and thrusting) and a wedge (which promotes sliding and thrusting).
  • Participants will be able to assess the client’s physical requirements and describe how to measure clients for the pre-ischial shelf to create an antithrust seat cushion.

Jean Anne Zollars, PT, DPT, MA treats children and adults in her private practice in Albuquerque, NM, integrating manual therapy, neurodevelopmental treatment, and seating/mobility.  She is also an instructor for the Barral Institute teaching Visceral and Neural Manipulation. Jean Anne graduated from the physical therapy program at Ithaca College in 1982, was trained in NDT in 1988, and in 1991 received her Masters of Arts degree in Rehabilitation Technology from San Francisco State University.  In 2014, she received her Post-Professional Doctorate in Physical Therapy from Rosalind Franklin University of Medicine and Science. She is the author of “Special Seating: An Illustrated Guide, 2nd edition”, published in 2010, and has worked and taught in this field at the Rehabilitation Engineering Center at Packard Children’s Hospital at Stanford, and in New Mexico, El Salvador, Nicaragua, Canada, Ireland, England, Russia, and Mexico.