Yoga Poses To Ease Back Pain

It’s no secret, our bodies are under a lot of stress, whether we’re standing constantly or working in uncomfortable shoes. Even as you’re reading this article, you may be sitting down with your shoulders hunched over and back sloped, feeling a little discomfort. According to the American Chiropractic Association, 80 percent of Americans will experience back pain at some point in their lives and spend $50 billion each year to try to alleviate it.

While you shouldn’t put a cost to your health, it doesn’t have to be so expensive to help heal some issues. Yoga is one of the most effective ways to help relieve back pain and it can also ease potential stress on your wallet. Just by staying in each pose for only a few breaths a day, you’re on way to help strengthen, stretch and improve circulation to the spine. Here are some of the best poses that’ll help benefit your back.

Balasana (Child’s Pose)

Child’s Pose/Photo:

Probably one of the most loved restorative poses, balasana stretches the muscles of the lower back, as well as the hips, thighs and ankles. It also promotes flexibility and stress relief, releasing lower back tension as your back returns to the small natural curve.

How to do:

Start on your hands and knees in tabletop position. Inhale and spread your knees hip-width distance apart as you bring your big toes to touch. Exhale as you press back though your hands and send your hips to to rest on your heels. Rest your forehead on your mat as you keep your arms long and extended to the front of your mat or lay your arms along your body with your hand facing palms up, resting your torso between your thighs. Keeping your eyes closed, with each inhale, broaden your back. On your exhale, melt a little deeper into your mat and if your arms are extended, stretch your fingertips even more to the top of your mat. Hold for five to 10 deep breaths.

Adho Mukha Shvanasana (Downward Facing Dog)

Downward Facing Dog/Photo:

This is yoga’s most ubiquitous pose and deservedly so. Adho Mukha Shvanasana offers the ultimate, rejuvenating body stretch by strengthening and lengthening your hamstrings and entire spine.

How to do:

Start by lying on your stomach with your whole body flat on the floor. Begin to inhale as you place your hands on the floor at the bottom of your ribs with fingertips facing forward and your elbows tucked in. Exhale as you engage your core, lift your hips off the floor, tuck your toes under and straighten your arms to create an upside-down V shape, with your hips up towards the sky. Set your gaze at a point behind you. Your hands should be shoulder-width apart and your feet should be in line with your with your hips. Try to keep your legs straight while pressing your heels towards the floor. Inhale as you lengthen your spine, keeping your neck long and your shoulder blades down your back. Exhale as you press through your chest, moving it towards your thighs. Hold for five to 10 breaths.