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Yoga Poses To Alleviate Back Pain

yoga for back pain relief

As you will have heard me say countless times if you visit my blog regularly — yoga has SO many great benefits, and this is true of a range of different things.

This ancient practice is not only incredibly restorative and stress-busting, but also helps to boost your strength, stamina, and flexibility — among so many other things!

One of the most beneficial things about yoga for a massive number of people, is how effective it can be at tackling pain in the body. This is true regardless of where in the body you are experiencing pain, and you can tailor your yoga practice to address your specific needs.

Yoga For Back Pain

Back pain is such a common problem, and as many as 50 percent of adults in the US report experiencing pain in the back at least once a year!

Worldwide, it is said that back pain is the leading cause of disability, with one in ten people being affected by this issue. What’s more, absolutely anyone can experience this, regardless of their age.

There are many reasons why we might develop this kind of pain, such as sitting at a desk all day to work, or frequently lifting heavy objects. It could also be secondary to another health condition.

Practicing yoga regularly can not only help to alleviate existing pain, but can also strengthen and open up the muscles of the back, helping to protect against future issues.

Let’s take a look at some simple yoga poses that can help!

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Cat-Cow Pose

Cat-Cow Pose, also known as Chakravakasana, is one of my favourite moves for addressing issues in the back. This simple pose is also fantastic for improving balance and posture.

Furthermore, the breathing technique that you do alongside this pose will help to push stress and anxiety out of your mind!

To enjoy this pose, begin on your hands and knees on your mat. Your back should be straight with a neutral spine. Take a deep breath in as you lift your hip bones up towards the sky to arch your back, and allow your stomach muscles to totally relax. Your gaze should be towards the floor at the front of your mat.

Pause here for a moment before exhaling and bringing your head up to look straight ahead of you. Bring the hips down and push the chest forwards. Hold your body here for a moment before starting the sequence again, making sure to focus on inhaling and exhaling at the same time as each movement begins.

As you flow through this pose, it is essential that you do not strain your neck, or move any part of your body too quickly. If you have painful or weak wrists, then you may prefer to rest on your forearms for this pose.

Cobra Pose

Cobra Pose, also known as Bhujangasana, is a fairly gentle yoga pose that will help to ease back pain, as well as giving the abdominal muscles a good stretch.

cobra pose back pain

To enter this pose, begin by lying face down on the mat with your legs straight out behind you. Position your hands on the mat beneath your shoulders, and inhale as you straighten your arms to lift your chest up off the ground. Engage the muscles in your glutes and in your back as you do this.

Exhale as you hold your body here, and then take a few more deep breaths in and out. You can then slowly release back to the start position, and repeat the entire sequence two or three more times.

As well as helping to strengthen the back and easing pain in this area, Cobra Pose is also a good way to improve your flexibility. With a regular practice, you will also start to notice that your glutes become stronger.

Getting Started With Yoga

If you are already experiencing back pain, then you may feel as though exercising will exacerbate your existing problem. Pain can often leave us feeling as though we should move as little as possible so as not to make things worse. However, this inactivity can actually have the opposite desired effect!

When we engage in regular physical activity, then we are working to strengthen our bodies and to encourage our muscles to stay active. For those already living with pain, this is something that will have to be embarked upon slowly and with care. But it is something that can have amazing benefits and can really help to turn things around.

If you haven’t done yoga before, but would now like to get started to address your pain, then this is a wonderful decision to have reached.

When you are new to yoga, it can be incredibly helpful to go along to a structured class so that you have the guidance of the instructor. However, if that is not possible for you, then you can absolutely become a yogi all by yourself at home!

There are so many fantastic online resources — such as Grokker — that will get you started in no time.

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By starting slow and carving out just a few minutes each day to flow through some poses, then you can ease yourself into this practice. As your confidence builds, you can increase the amount of time you spend practicing, and also start to attempt some more complicated poses.

Staying Safe On The Mat

If you have limited mobility because of your pain or for other reasons, then it’s so important to be gentle with yourself. You will likely find that restorative yoga poses are the best ones to start with, and will help to warm your body and mind up to embracing yoga.

If you have a diagnosed health condition, such as sciatica, then it is always a good idea to consult with your doctor before starting any new physical activity.

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This Post Has One Comment

  1. Hi Julie. I have suffered for years with low back pain due to an injury many years ago. Arthritis is setting in but thankfully is at a slow pace for advancement. I just found my beginners guide for yoga a couple of days ago. Now I stumble upon this article and again, it speaks directly to me and where I am in life currently.

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