If you're dealing with back pain, you're not alone. More than 16 million adults experience persistent or chronic back pain according to Georgetown University's Health Policy Institute. Healthcare costs and indirect costs resulting from this pain total upwards of $12 billion per year. Fortunately, there are ways to relieve back pain with yoga!
In this article, we're going to share five yoga poses for back pain that you can do throughout the day as well as a short practice you can add to your daily routine. For even better results, sign up for a two-week free trial of our Yoga for Back Pain program where you'll get three free one-on-one sessions with our expert yoga instructors as well as group classes focusing on yoga for back pain and core strengthening. Plus, you'll have access to 30+ other daily yoga classes!
Experts recommend incorporating yoga poses into your daily life for the best results. This doesn't mean that you have to spend 90 minutes every day on a comprehensive yoga practice. Even getting up once an hour and doing some stretching or a yoga pose will go a long way towards minimizing or even eliminating your back pain.
Our bodies are meant for motion, after all. Given that many of us spend our days at a desk, taking short breaks to regularly change position and get some movement into our lives will not only make our bodies feel better but will also improve our mental outlook. Here are five poses you can add to your day to relieve back pain with yoga.
Cat-cow pose offers a gentle spine stretch and is a great way to start off your workout or yoga practice. This pose helps increase flexibility and stretch out your neck, shoulders, and torso.
To perform this yoga pose, start in a tabletop position. On the inhale, let your stomach drop and lift your sit bones upward and bring your chest forward. Your gaze should be slightly elevated. On the exhale, arch your back, bring your belly button towards your spine, and shift your gaze to your knees. Move through these two positions 5–10 times.
Child's pose is a delightfully relaxing yoga pose that can help you stretch out your wrists and ankles, thighs, neck, and lower back. Plus, it helps alleviate stress.
Start from a kneeling position with your bottom resting on your feet. Spread your knees wide, keeping your big toes touching, and bend your body forward with your arms stretched out over your head. Rest your forehead on the floor or a yoga block and keep your arms extended. Rest in this pose for up to 5 minutes.
Downward-facing dog helps strengthen your back and shoulders while alleviating back pain and sciatica.
Start in a tabletop position. Press your hands firmly into the ground while tucking your toes and lifting your knees off the ground, pressing your sit bones towards the ceiling. Feel free to keep a slight bend in your knees and your heels off the floor if that feels best for you. Focus on lengthening your back and keep your head in line with your upper arms with your chin slightly tucked. Hold this position for 1–3 minutes.
Bridge pose will help strengthen the glutes and abs as well as the muscles along your spine. This pose can also help correct your posture.
Start on your back with your knees bent and your feet flat on the floor, in line with your knees. Your arms will stay at your sides. Raise your hips and pelvis off the floor, squeezing your glutes to press them towards the ceiling. Continue raising your hips until your shoulders and feet are supporting your body. Hold this position for a few seconds before gently rolling your torso down to the ground, ending with your hips. Repeat 10–15 times for up to 3 sets.
Standing forward bends help stretch out your spine and just feel really good. Be sure to initiate the movement from your hips and not your lower back.
Start by standing with your feet together or hip-distance apart. Keeping your knees slightly bent, fold your upper body forward and over your legs (moving from your hips). Place your hands on the ground in front of you or on yoga blocks. As you inhale, lengthen your spine and open your chest. On the exhale, bring your torso forward again, keeping your back straight. Repeat as desired.
Yoga is a beautiful and beneficial practice. Not only is yoga great for your mental wellbeing but it can help you stretch and strengthen areas of your body that are largely ignored by most workouts. As such, yoga, when done correctly, is a wonderful solution to both preventing injury and healing from injury.
Here is a short yoga practice you can do to relieve back pain. To get even more benefit, sign up for a two-week free trial of our Yoga for Back Pain program!
Back pain is a common problem for millions of people. Yoga can help with this. A regular yoga practice can help you stretch and strengthen your body, reducing the risk of injury from your workout and helping to prevent, reduce, or eliminate back pain.
A 2-week free trial of myYogaTeacher's Yoga for Back Pain program is the perfect way to get started on your path to a healthier, happier back. You'll get access to our expert yoga instructors—including three free one-on-one sessions—along with unlimited access to group classes like Yoga for Core Strengthening, Gentle Yoga, Yoga for Back Pain, Chair Yoga, and a whole lot more!
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