Best Yoga Moves For Back Pain – The Top 5

Best Yoga Moves For Back Pain – The Top 5

This one goes out to my husband who has just gotten back to work after being off for two weeks.

He is still in pain but has been told to do some light exercise to help build up the muscles again.

It was crazy, at first, I totally thought he was hamming it up. I am so unsupportive! I was like, yeah okay, you’re really ‘hurt’. It was only after like week one where I realized that he was being very serious and was in very much pain.

He went through the chiropractor and even got acupuncture to rid the paid. I loaded him up with Advil, Voltaren and robaxacet. Finally, after week two he has been able to get back to work, whew! He is still feeling very tight in his back so hopefully, with these yoga moves, he can get limber again and not be in pain anymore.


1. Child’s Pose

Best Yoga Moves For Back Pain - The Top 5How to get into the pose:

As you can see from the photo this is a calm pose. Tuck your knees under your belly, reach out with your arms. You can relax your arms or actively press down onto your mat. Another way people do childs pose is to point your knees outward so your belly is not resting on them. I prefer this alternative but it’s what works best for you.

How does it help?

Child’s pose is great for elongating your back. You’re supported by your knees being tucked in but are able to get a really nice stretch with your arms stretched out and actively pressed down.

I could stay in childs pose forever, it’s a very soothing and energizing pose.

2. Cat and Cow

Best Yoga Moves For Back Pain - The Top 5How to get into the pose:

This pose starts in a table-top position – on your hands and knees, shoulders stacked over wrists and hips stacked over knees. This is a breath-focused pose and really gets your whole back moving. When your back is flat and you are in position inhale while pushing your stomach to the ground and pointing your tailbone and head to the sky. Focus on moving one vertebra at a time. On your exhale release while pushing your middle back up to the sky and tucking in your tailbone and chin. Repeat as many times as you like.

How does it help?

It stretches out your whole back. When doing this pose led by your breathing you get the full range of motion in your spine. I love this pose and it’s a great warm-up for any class. If the back pain is really severe this may be a little too intense for you. Always listen to your body and if it’s too much then stop doing it.

3. Updog

How to get into the pose:

Firstly, I want to say this is a top favourite pose of mine for getting a really good back stretch. Most of the time when someone gets into this pose it’s after a chaturanga. I will talk about getting into this pose from lying on your stomach. So, lie on your stomach and plant your hands underneath your shoulders. On your inhale you want to push your chest up while putting a bend into your back. Instead of resting with your toes tucked as you would expect, you should be on the top part of your foot. It sounds awkward but don’t worry, it doesn’t hurt.

Best Yoga Moves For Back Pain - The Top 5

 

How does it help?

It allows your spine to get a nice arch in it and give you a good stretch. You can challenge the pose more by looking to the ceiling as well to add more of a stretch.

4. Forward Fold With Clasped Hands

Best Yoga Moves For Back Pain - The Top 5How to get into the pose:

It’s pretty easy to get into this pose. Stand grounded in mountain pose with your feet shoulder width apart. Clasp your hands behind your back and exhale in a forward fold. Let your hand drop down as much as they can and breath. Please remember to not lock your knees.

How does it help?

This is a great pose all around! You get a great stretch in the back of your legs, you open up your chest and shoulders with your arms and you help relax pressure off of your spine. It is very important in this pose that you do not tense up your neck. One way to tell if you are starting to tense up is whether your jaw is tight. If it is you need to focus on relaxing your muscles and taking deeper breaths.

5. Spinal Twist

How to get into the pose: There are a couple ways you can do a spinal twist. Decide whether you want to be lying down or in a seated position.

If you are lying on your back – cross your right leg over your left and let your knees fall to the left. You can have your arms extended out on either side and for a more intense stretch look to the right (opposite of where your knees fall). Make sure you do it to the other side as well!

Best Yoga Moves For Back Pain - The Top 5

If you are in a seated position – Extend one leg straight and cross over the other leg. Hug your knee into your chest and twist away from the leg that is extended. To get more out of the twist trying to look as far behind you as possible. The arm that isn’t hugging your leg (it’ll be on the same side you are turned/twisted to) can extend straight out or you can use it as support on the ground.

How does it help?

It really helps to extend your back and when you twist it works with back pain and pressure to relax certain muscles. Make sure you do the twist for both sides!

 


Now, these poses aren’t very strenuous and will work with nice long breaths and holding them for some time. If it is ever too much, listen to your body and don’t push the pose. Especially when you are trying to cure your back pain – you don’t want to make it worse right?

Another point I want to mention is that when you do a pose one way you need to balance it out by doing the opposite.

For Example: When you do up dog and hold it for a couple breaths, you should take a minute to lie on your stomach to bring your spine back to a neutral state.

I will say it again because it is just that important – always listen to your body and don’t push something that doesn’t feel right.

 

I would love to know what your favourite ways are to stretch out your back – yoga or not! Or if you have any questions please leave them below.

 

Thanks and have a great day!

Kahlua

kgordin@thealldayyoga.com

Please follow and like us:

 

21 Responses

  1. Kavitha says:

    I had a good reading. Good post on Yoga moves. These yoga poses will help for back pain and also for maintaining good health. Thanks you.

    • admin says:

      Hi Kavitha,

      Thank you for the comment, I really appreciate it!

      Yes, that is my hope for the readers here to use this tool to help with back pain or to work out back pain a person has experienced.

      Cheers,
      Kahlua

  2. Patti B says:

    Very informative. I needed those pictures you posted to help visualize the positions. Also letting your readers know what the yoga positions did for the body was a big plus.

    • admin says:

      Patti,

      Thank you for the comment. I find that having photos along with a description definitely helps with getting into a pose properly.

      Happy you enjoyed the read!

      Cheers,
      Kahlua

  3. Tim B says:

    Hey Kahlua,

    Thank you for the information these Yoga Moves are awesome. I came across your article and realized I’ve been at my desk for 3 hours with no break…so I had to try a few. I’ll be sure try all of them during my morning workout tomorrow. Hope your hubby is back to 100% soon.

    • admin says:

      Hey Tim,

      Thanks for the hopes for him. He is certainly on the road to recovery and should be fully healed soon.

      I know what you mean. I sit at a desk all day as well and sometimes you don’t realize how long you have been sitting or what your posture is! Not good!

      I tend to take a walk around the office every hour or so depending on how busy I am.

      I am happy to have helped you and would love to know how these poses have helped you with back pain!

      Cheers,
      Kahlua

  4. Tim says:

    Hey Kahlua,

    Thanks for the awesome Yoga moves. I stumbled across your article today and realized I’ve been at my desk for 3 hours with no break, so I had to try a few. I’ll be sure to check out the rest tomorrow during my morning workout. Hope your hubby is back to 100% soon, and thanks again for sharing. I’ll be back!

  5. Melinda says:

    I think that these basic poses are among my favorite as well. I always slip into child’s pose when I need a bit of a break and to regroup. It is a nice spine stretch.

    • admin says:

      Melinda,

      I agree I love child’s pose. You can use it to be relaxed or to actively straighten your spine out!

      Thank you for the comment,
      Kahlua

  6. Furkan says:

    My back started hurting because of my bodybuilding exercises and I will try out Updog. It looks weird but I also heard that it is quite effective for reducing back pain. However how long I should do that move?

    • admin says:

      You can hold it for as long as you like.

      If I were you I would do a couple of the other ones and hold it for a long time. Updog may be too strenuous for a long stretch of time.

      I am sorry to hear that your back started hurting.

      I hope that these moves can help you out!

      Cheers,
      Kahlua

  7. Rob says:

    I just started taking yoga again. It’s been a long time. But I remember when it helped me in many ways and I am familiar with the child’s pose, cat and cow, and updog. I have to tell you that the spinal twist would be a challenge for me. I remember the yoga instructor always saying to just do the best you can and eventually I would get to where I was doing it correctly.
    The spinal twist is okay for me to do, but I know that with practice I will get better. Thanks for the instructions on the yoga poses!

    • admin says:

      Rob,

      Firstly, I am happy to hear that you have started taking yoga again!

      There are so many wonderful benefits of yoga.

      It is good to learn your limitations and now you know that a spinal twist is one of them. All you can do is practice and hopefully, after some time you will find more room to twist.

      Thank you for the comment,
      Kahlua

  8. jamaar says:

    I actually do have back pain at times and so does my mother. I hate to see her go through such pain i will forsure show her these love it! thanks

    • admin says:

      That’s too bad!

      It’s tough seeing anyone in pain and especially when it’s related to your back.

      I really hope this will help your mom and you!

      Thanks for the comment,
      Kahlua

  9. Nicole says:

    Great article. I know what I’ll be doing as soon as I get home after work sitting at desks all day is so bad for us. Hey, do you have maybe some suggestions for stretches we can do while sitting?

    • admin says:

      I totally agree. It’s really challenging sitting at a desk all day and maintaining posture and fitness.

      Definitely, stretch out your back when you get home!

      As far as sitting goes, I recommend doing light back twists – as long as your legs are at a 90-degree angle from you to the floor.

      Another great stretch you can do is clasp your hands behind your back.

      EX – Point your right elbow to the sky and point your left elbow to the ground. Try to touch fingertips and eventually clasp your hands. Do it for both sides!

      Thanks for the comment,
      Kahlua

  10. Jennifer says:

    Alrighty then! I’m adding the cat and cow pose along with the forward fold to my exercise routine(s). I did the updog today (by accident-lol). I tend to have tightness (and sometimes pain) in my lower back from all my years of standing for work. I work out regularly but have incorporated most of the moves you listed above either before or after my weight training. I know that increasing the strength in my back and core are very important, which is why I do weight training. The yoga moves not only lengthen and stretch my muscles but man, it feels awesome. I could fall asleep in the child’s pose sometimes. Thank you for the recommendations and I hope your hubby is back to his regular routine now and out of pain:)

    • admin says:

      Hey!

      Thank you for the hopes for my hubby. I have started to get him to do these and I think he’s noticing a difference.

      It’s cool hearing that a lot of people already utilize these poses in their workouts or morning/evening routines. Happy I could add to your routine!

      I totally agree with child’s pose too. I just love it so much!

      Cheers!
      Kahlua

  11. Ivan says:

    Great info about the best yoga moves for back pain. I do a short yoga session every morning after a short HIT workout. I perform almost every pose you recommend here to prevent back pain and to keep my spine and muscles around it in a good shape. Because I do a lot of sitting on the laptop it is necessary. Thank you for a very helpful article.

    Ivan

    • admin says:

      Ivan,

      That’s great to hear that you do a lot of these poses already.

      I know it’s hard because there are so many great ones out there that you can do.

      Happy to hear you do yoga every morning too!

      Cheers,
      Kahlua

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

Follow by Email
Facebook
Facebook
Google+
https://thealldayyoga.com/best-yoga-moves-for-back-pain-the-top-5">
Pinterest
Pinterest
Instagram