5 Yoga Poses for Back Pain Relief

Whether it’s the occasional discomfort of a pulled muscle or ongoing tension from sitting at a desk all day, back pain is a common problem for many people. Fortunately, gentle yoga exercises can soothe the ache while stretching out tight discomfort to provide natural, effective relief. Our yoga studio in Smithfield, NC is sharing five simple yoga poses for back pain that even beginners can try.

Child’s Pose (Balasana)

If you read our article on yoga for menstrual yoga for menstrual cramps and PMS cramps and PMS, you’re probably familiar with the Child’s Pose. One of the most commonly used poses, this eases back pain and tension by aligning and elongating the spine. 

Getting into Child’s Pose

  • Kneel on your mat or the floor with your knees around hip-width apart, keeping your feet together behind you.
  • Take a slow, deep breath in, and as you exhale, bend forward with your torso laying over and between your thighs. Lengthen your spine so your ribs are drawn forward, away from your tailbone, and curve your neck forward slightly so your forehead is touching the floor.  
  • Extend your arms with your palms in front of you taking slow, deep breaths from your belly.
  • Hold the position for one to three minutes.

Downward Facing Dog (Adho Mukha Svanasana)

This is a pose you can start in or, if you’re in Child’s Pose, you can move into Downward Dog, another popular pose that can stretch out muscles and ease sciatic pain and tightness in the legs that can radiate pain into the back. 

Getting into Downward Facing Dog (from Child’s Pose)

  • Keeping your hands on the floor, sit up on your knees so your hands are lined up under your shoulders;
  • Spread your fingers and press your hands down into the ground, providing you leverage to lift up your knees, then raise your pelvis to the ceiling.
  • Try to straighten your legs and lower your heels to the floor, feeling the stretch in your legs, arms, and back. 
  • Relax your head and focus your attention on through your legs and hold this pose for one to three minutes. 

Cat-Cow Pose (Chakravakasana)

This is another pose you can move into from Child’s Pose. The Cat-Cow stretch is an essential hatha yoga pose and is a great way to not only stretch your back muscles but also control your breathing which can help with tension. 

Getting into Cat-Cow (from Child’s Pose)

  • Raise into an all-fours position with your palms on the floor straight below your shoulders, your knees hip-width apart and straight below your hips.
  • Inhale slowly and as you exhale round your spine toward the ceiling and point your head to the floor, creating a smooth curve of your neck and spine. This is the “cat” pose. 
  • From the cat pose, inhale slowly, raise your head toward the ceiling, open your chest, and raise your pelvis to the ceiling as your belly drops. 
  • Avoid straining your neck and focus your movement in your spine rounding up and arching down. 
  • Move between these two poses for up to three minutes. 

Bridge Pose (Setu Bandhasana)

Bridge pose is an incredible way to open your chest muscles and stretch your back, and many people find it energizing and invigorating. Like Child’s Pose, this can be a starting point for several poses that can ease back pain. 

Getting into Bridge Pose

  • Lie on your back with your arms extended toward your feet, palms flat, knees bent and your feet flat on the floor.  
  • Press your feet and arms into the floor and exhale slowly while lifting your hips to the ceiling, tucking your tailbone toward your pubic bone and keeping your buttocks off the floor but keeping your glutes relaxed. 
  • Roll your shoulders underneath your body and extend your arms along the floor, clasping your hands. 
  • Stay in the pose for 30 to 60 seconds, exhaling through your release as you roll your spine gradually down onto the floor. 

Two Knee Spinal Twist Pose (Jathara Parivartanasana)

After the Bridge Pose, you’re back to resting with your spine on the floor and your knees up and facing the ceiling. From here, you can easily move into the Two Knee Spinal Twist Pose that can help restore mobility and flexibility through your back by stretching your shoulders and mid-back. 

Get Into Two Knee Spinal Twist Pose

  • With your spine flat on the floor, pull your knees to your chest with your feet together and your arms stretched out to the sides.
  • From this beginning pose, lower your legs to the left, keeping your knees and ankles close together and your shoulders flat to the floor.
  • Hold this position for 30 to 60 seconds, then return to the neutral position with your knees to your chest. 
  • Repeat the movement, lowering your legs to the right. 

Schedule a Yoga Class at Our Smithfield Yoga Studio

For more personalized instruction that will help you improve your skills and move into yoga poses that can help back pain, sign up for a yoga class today or watch our free online yoga classes. We have a wide variety of classes available for all experience levels and would love to work with you. If you have any questions, give us a call at  919-971-1431 or fill out our contact form.