Relieving back pain with yoga comes from three distinct aspects of the endeavor, which you should aim for in all aspects of life: strengthening your back and core to relieve pressure on your spine, releasing tension from the muscles so they aren’t bothering you, and relieving general stress which makes pain worse. Try these four poses and see the benefits for yourself:
A classic pose that works wonders for your back extensors, the big muscles that support your spine when you’re standing up or lifting heavy objects. From your hands and knees, press back and raise your knees away from the floor and push your tailbone up, forming an acute angle. Hold it for a few breaths, then relax and repeat.
Upward forward bend or forward fold
A simple bend which might take a little getting used to, especially if your balance isn’t great just yet, this one stretches your back muscles and shoulders out. Stand straight with loose knees, then bend forward towards the floor as far as you comfortably can. Repeat five or so times, then hold the position at maximum comfortable extension for a few breaths on the last bend.
Another staple pose, this one stretches your core and works your back muscles, both crucial aspects of controlling back pain. Lay flat on the floor with your palms on the floor by your ribs. Pull your legs in and push your feet down for stability, then use your back to lift yourself from the floor.
A great pose for stress relief, the child’s pose works to stretch your back and relax it. From your hands and knees, settle back until your glutes almost touch your heels, keeping your head down between your arms. Hold the pose for a while and then repeat as much as you like.
It’s important to make sure you’re going through your yoga poses for back pain in the right environment. A good massage mat like the Pranamat ECO allows you to get more out of less when you’re working to relieve pain. The same exercises performed on bare carpet or other inappropriate surfaces simply won’t work as well as a properly supported movement.