Most people will experience lower back pain at some point in their lives.
It is particularly common among people who sit for long periods, have poor posture, or have a weak core.
Anyone who regularly lifts heavy objects or bends their back as a part of their job is also likely to experience lower back pain at some point.
Fortunately, there are many yoga poses that can be used to reduce lower back pain.
These poses will improve your flexibility, core strength, posture, and breathing, which addresses the primary causes of lower back pain.
Without further ado, here are the best yoga poses for easing lower back pain.
Before using yoga to deal with back pain
If you have a history of lower back injuries like slipped discs or you are suffering from high levels of pain, see a physical therapist before performing any yoga poses.
You may be suffering from a severe injury that needs to be addressed before you can commence yoga.
Additionally, when performing yoga poses to address back pain never stretch into a position of pain.
Yoga poses are used to stretch your muscles, tendons, and ligaments — they should never cause pain.
If you experience pain during a pose, ease up on the stretch or avoid doing it until your health improves.
The best yoga poses for easing lower back pain
The following poses are all quite simple to perform and extremely effective.
You can either incorporate them into a long yoga routine, or perform them individually.
The Child’s Pose is one of the first poses learnt by beginners.
It is very useful for aligning and decompressing the spine.
It’s a fantastic way to begin or end a yoga workout.
To perform Child’s Pose:
- Kneel on your yoga mat with your knees hip-width apart
- Breathe in, then as you breathe out, lay your torso across your knees
- Focus on lengthening your spine and and draw your ribs away from your tailbone
- Extend your arms in front of you, placing your palms flat on the yoga mat, and place your forehead on the yoga mat
- Hold this position for between 1 to 3 minutes
Downward Facing Dog
Downward Facing Dog is is a popular pose because it is very effective at stretching the hamstrings and calves.
It also elongates the spine and helps to take some pressure off of the lower back.
It can be performed immediately after Child’s Pose if you like.
- After performing Child’s Pose, keep your palms on the yoga mat, plant your feet, lift your knees off the ground and lift your buttocks into the air
- Keep your legs and arms as straight as possible
- You will form the shape of a arch, with only your hands and feet on the mat
- While in this pose, focus on having straight legs
- Lower your heels to the ground as much as you can, as this will stretch the tendons in your legs
- Plant your hands firmly with fingers spread wide
- Focus on elongating your spine and enjoying the impact this pose has on your lower back
- Hold this position for 2 to 3 minutes
Standing Forward Bend
This is another common yoga pose that will improve the flexibility of your lower back.
It also lengthens the spine and stretches the hamstrings.
When performing this pose, aim for straight legs, but don’t force yourself into a position where your back hurts.
To perform a Standing Forward Bend:
- Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart
- Straighten your legs as much as you can while bending at the torso so your hands are touching the ground
- Look towards your knees, letting your shoulders and neck relax
- Hold this position for up to 3 minutes
Knees to Chest With Slow Rock
This position can give the muscles in your lower back some respite and straighten your spine. It’s an excellent way to massage your lower back muscles.
- Start by laying on your back
- Bring your knees up to your chest and grasp your shins with your arms
- Gently rock to the left and right
- Repeat for a few minutes
Reclined Pigeon Pose
This pose can be performed immediately after the knees to chest pose.
It will stretch your hip flexors and inner thighs while keeping your lower back muscles relaxed.
- Remain on your back with your legs bent
- Place your left foot over the quad muscle of your right leg (just above the knee)
- Hold the shin of your right leg with your arms and pull the leg towards your chest
- Hold the stretch in a comfortable position for a few minutes then switch sides
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