At some point or another, back pain is going to affect us all. Be it down to muscle strains, age-related aches, and pains, repetitive strain injury, or from an accident. Back pain can be a debilitating and frustrating experience for those afflicted with it, Of course, there are many ways of handling back pain, from medication to physical therapy.
Yoga can help release any built up tension in the muscles and help to further relax and ease your muscles, but the poses you perform should be tailored for that very purpose and not potentially make the problem worse. Yoga stretching is not only beneficial for those suffering from back pain, but also those who feel that they are losing their flexibility as time passes. Daily stretches can help keep you strong and supple and prevent muscles from becoming brittle.
So what are the top 5 poses which can help alleviate back pain? Read on to discover.
*Note – Regardless of whether your back pain is an ongoing condition or something that has just recently started, you should always consult with your physician before undertaking any strenuous exercise. Failure to do so could result in you creating further damage or injury to your spine or muscles.
This pose is an ideal starting pose and is performed on the floor. By being on the floor you mitigate the risk of falling or overextending and causing injury to yourself. It is an ideal pose for beginners and also those with back pain.
To perform the pose lie flat on your back. Take a deep breath in and then out. Upon breathing out raise your left knee to your chest while holding the shin with both hands. Hold for around 5 seconds and breathe in, as you exhale raise the right leg to your chest. Alternate and repeat 8 times. When lifting your knee toward your chest do not push your back flat to the floor. Allow the natural curvature of your spine to be in place. Forcing your spine to the floor can cause the muscles to overextend and could cause tears to the supporting muscles.
This should be performed 4 times. Again, this is another floor pose that will help gently stretch out your lower back muscles while helping them develop strength.
To begin with, you want to lie on your stomach with your hands rested at your sides. Suck your belly button upwards towards your spine and then inhale. While inhaling lift your feet, chest, and arms off of the floor. Tense the muscles in your inner thigh area and then hold for 4-5 seconds. Exhale and slowly lower your body back to the floor. Repeat for a further 3 times. This pose helps release lower back tension and stretch out the core muscles.
Adho Mukha Svanasana
This pose is commonly known as the downward facing dog. It will help stretch out the back muscles and help relax them. It is also ideal for releasing tension in the back of the legs and across the upper back.
Place your feet firmly on the floor and then bend forwards to place the palms of your hands on the floor. If you feel too much tightness in the legs, slightly bend the knees. Your body should look like an upside down V. Try to elongate your spine as much as possible by pushing down into the palms of your hands. Keep your nose in line with your navel and focus your sight on your upper thighs. Hold the position for 60 seconds. Inhale and exhale throughout and try to keep the breathing rhythm regular.
This pose is also referred to as the Cow Pose. It helps stretch out the front of the body, the neck, and the spine while providing a gentle massage for the internal organs across the stomach area.
To begin this pose you want to get on your hands and knees with your knees below your hips. Your hands, wrists, and elbows should all be in line with your shoulders. Keep your head straight and focus your vision on the floor. As you inhale, lift your hips, tailbone, and chest towards the ceiling while allowing your stomach and middle spine descend to the floor. As you exhale, return to the starting position. Perform 10 repetitions.
Setu Bandha Sarvangasana
This pose is also known as the Bridge Pose. It can help strengthen the spine, core muscles and help relax and ease tension.
To begin, lie on the floor and place your hands on your side. Start to walk your feet toward your tailbone so that your body is lifting off of the floor, stop when the ankles are level with the knees. Move your arms beneath your back and lift your upper spine. The only parts of the body that should not be touching the floor are the head, shoulders, and feet. Hold the pose for 30 seconds before descending to the floor again. Repeat 4 times. Let’s find out Common Lower Back Pain Causes and How to Avoid Them