Yoga for back pain relief can be extremely beneficial for both occasional soreness and chronic pain. Exercise in general is good for preventing and relieving back pain, but yoga in particular helps relieve pain through strengthening and stretching your muscles, improving posture and balance, and promoting body awareness and relaxation.
In fact, recent studies have found that practicing yoga relieves symptoms caused by back pain better than stretching alone. The same study found that those who practice yoga regularly are twice as likely to cut back on pain medications than those who attempt to manage symptoms on their own.
Keep reading for three beginner poses so you can give yoga for back pain relief a try.
- Lie on your stomach with your legs straight and your forearms tucked close to your body.
- Inhale, tighten your legs, and raise your chest off the ground using your back muscles.
- Your hips, legs, and feet are all still on the ground with your elbows directly below your shoulders.
- Hold for 5-30 seconds before lowering yourself to the ground.
- Start with your hands and knees on the ground.
- Arch your back up toward the ceiling and hold for 10-20 seconds.
- Slowly arch your back down towards the floor and hold for 10-20 seconds before returning to the starting position.
Modified Downward Dog
- Stand facing a wall and place your hands on the wall between chest and waist level. Your feet should be hip-width apart.
- Slightly bend your knees and slowly walk away from the wall, keeping your hips over your feet and hands on the wall.
- Stop walking backward when your arms are straight in line with your spine.
- Hold the position for 30 seconds and then walk forward to end the pose.
People with severe back pain should not attempt to use yoga for symptom relief. And remember, it is always a good idea to consult your physician before beginning a new fitness regimen.