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neutral positionOrthopedics The position of a joint where the bones that make up the joint are placed in the optimal position for maximal movement
neutral position; NP; reference position position of the leg and foot when the subject stands in normal angle and base of gait; used as the reference position for assessment of deviations from the norm (Table 1)
|Joint||Characteristics at neutral||Available motion|
|Hip||The legs are in line with the trunk, parallel to one another and in the sagittal plane|
The femoral condyles lie in the frontal plane
|Knee||Knee joint fully extended|
Thigh and lower leg in line in sagittal and frontal planes
|Ankle||Plantar aspect of the foot on the horizontal plane/weight-bearing surface|
Lower leg perpendicular to the sagittal and frontal planes/weight-bearing surface
|Subtalar||Bisection of the posterior aspect of the calcaneum perpendicular to horizontal plane/weight-bearing surface||Supination/pronation|
|Midtarsal complex||Plantar aspects of the metatarsal heads lie in horizontal plane/on weight-bearing surface|
Joint maximally pronated
|First ray||Plantar aspect of the first metatarsal head in same plane as lesser metatarsal heads, and horizontal plane||Dorsiflexion/plantarflexion|
|Second/third/ fourth rays||Maximally dorsiflexed on horizontal plane/weight-bearing surface||Plantarflexion|
|Fifth ray||Plantar aspect of the fifth metatarsal head in same plane as lesser metatarsal heads, and horizontal plane||Dorsiflexion/plantarflexion|
|First metatarsophalangeal joint||Plantar aspect of hallux in ground contact on horizontal plane and the hallux neither adducted nor abducted||Flexion/extension|
neu·tral po·si·tion(nūtrăl pŏ-zishŭn)
Ideal positioning of the body while performing work activities associated with decreased risk of musculoskeletal injury.
n correct ergonomic positioning of the clinician's body in order to reduce stress and fatigue on muscles and joints during intraoral care of a patient, thereby reducing the possibility of neuromuscular disorders or repetitive strain injuries to the clinician.