Best Yoga Poses to Reduce Low Back Pain
Low back pain affects most people at some point in their lives, from those with sedentary lifestyles to professional athletes. For sedentary people, exercise can help relieve pain in the lower back. But exercising without stretching and releasing tight muscles may contribute to the pain. Yoga can be a useful treatment option, according to a study completed in 2017. Try adding these yoga poses into your routine to prevent back pain and injury.
Knees to chest
This pose can decrease discomfort and stiffness in your lower back according to Boston University. Lie on your back, bend your knees, and place your feet flat on the ground. Wrap your arms around your knees and pull your legs to your chest. Release and allow your feet to go back to the floor. Repeat 10 times.
The bridge helps extend the spine and hips, according to Fitness Magazine. Lie on your back, bend your knees, and place feet flat on the floor. Slowly push tailbone upward and lift buttocks off the floor. Try to hold the pose from 30 seconds to one minute. When ready to come down, release with an exhale and slowly roll spine back down onto floor.
The camel pose can be modified to relieve pressure on the back, according to the Yoga Journal. Kneel with knees hip-distance apart. Slowly bend backward, leaning hands on lower back for support. Hold this pose for 30 seconds to one minute, or if comfortable, reach back and hold onto the back of your ankles or your heels. To release, place hands on lower back, push hips down toward floor, and slowly lift torso. Modify this by tucking your toes under or squeezing a block between your upper thighs to help relieve back pressure.
This pose extends the back and strengthens the lower back muscles, according to Boston University. Lie on your stomach with your legs together and stretched out. Place your elbows under your shoulders and your forearms on the floor. Lift your chest off the floor. Press your hips and thighs toward the floor and stretch your spine and lower back. Hold the position for one to three minutes.
The plank pose strengthens your core to support your spine, according to Fitness Magazine. Start lying face down on the floor. Extend legs and raise your body and allow your arms to hold you in a plank position with your shoulders above your wrists. Raise your feet until you are on the balls of your feet.
The cat-cow pose helps relieve tension in the lower back, according to the American Council on Exercise. Start on your hands and knees with knees directly below hips and hands below shoulders. Inhale and lift chest toward the ceiling and allow belly to sink toward floor. Exhale and round spine toward the ceiling. Repeat 10 to 20 times.
The child’s pose gently stretches the lower back muscles, according to Boston University. Sit with your hips back toward your feet and relax your chest on the floor with your arms stretched out in front of you. Modify this to have your chest and head rest on a pillow.
Downward facing dog
This pose stretches the spine, hips, and hamstrings at once, helping to relieve lower back pain, according to the American Council on Exercise. Start in the child’s pose. Keep your hands on the floor, sitting on your knees. Lift your butt into the air to form an arch. Spread your fingers wide and alternate lifting your heels and placing your feet flat on the ground. Keep your head between your arms and look through your legs.
This pose helps to relieve low back muscle pain, according to the American Council on Exercise. Start with downward dog pose and walk your feet up to your hands. Bend your knees slightly and have your torso hang over your legs. Hold your elbows with the opposite hands and sway back and forth. Hold for five cycles.