How does Yoga help with Back Pain?

Yoga is a mind, body, and soul integration practice with historical roots in ancient Indian philosophy.

Yoga is often promoted as an effective way to increase flexibility, build strength and tone muscles, improve respiration, promote relaxation, and reduce stress.

And yoga is also said to be beneficial for back pain relief. That's right!

A review of studies on yoga and back pain found that yoga may be an effective treatment for chronic back pain and disability. The study's authors suggested that yoga may help the patient by:

  • Improving sitting and standing posture.
  • Reducing stress and tension in the body.
  • Improving breath and mind-to-muscle connection.
  • Improving overall sleep quality.
  • Enhances blood flow in the body, which induces healing.
  • Stretching and strengthening of muscles that support spine health.

Yoga is an excellent way to combat pain as it stretches and strengthens. Yoga may be an excellent option to consider if you have mild to serious back pain. 

But for beginners, some yoga poses may seem daunting. In this comprehensive guide about yoga postures for back pain, you'll get to learn more about yoga and why you need to consider this practice for mild to chronic back pain symptoms.

Also, get a detailed guide on performing beginner-friendly poses for back pain relief. So, without any further ado, let's dig in!

What do You Need to Get Started? 

What-Do-You-Need-To-Get-Started-to-do-yoga

To get started with your yoga practice for pain in the back as a beginner, you will need a few things:

  • A Yoga Mat - Yoga mats provide cushioning to the joints and support for your body, preventing you from slipping and injury during your practice. You can use any type of yoga mat with quality cushioning and an anti-slip grip.
  • A Pair of Yoga Block - A yoga block is typically made of foam or cork. These are available in various sizes and colours. A yoga block is a helpful prop that provides support and stability in various yoga poses. They can be used to modify yoga poses to make them more accessible for beginners or people with injuries.
  • A Yoga Strap - Yoga straps are made of cotton or nylon threads and are used to help with the alignment of the body in various yoga poses. Stretching using straps helps people acquire a greater range of motion.
    Yoga straps are also used to improve alignment and modify poses to make them more accessible for beginners as well as patients with severe injuries.
  • A Yoga Wheel - A yoga wheel mainly helps with the practice of backend yoga postures, which come in different sizes and colours. This prop can be used to modify poses for beginners and help them hold the pose for a longer duration. These are also said to help with the alignment.
  • A Yoga BolsterA bolster is a firm pillow used in yoga to support the back. It is often used for back pain relief. A bolster can also be used to modify yoga poses for beginners and patients with severe back injuries.

7 Easy-To-Do Yoga Poses for Back Pain for Beginners

Now that you know what you need to get started let's look at some easy yoga poses and yoga stretches for back pain:

1. Child’s Pose

  • Get in a tabletop position with your knees directly beneath your hips and your hands slightly in front of your shoulders.
  • To sit in a child’s pose, slowly lower your glutes towards your heels and rest your forehead on the mat as you exhale. Let your arms extend straight out in front of you, palms facing down.
  • Hold the child’s pose here for at least 60 to 5 minutes for deep relaxation in your back.

2. Cat-Cow Pose

  • Get on all your fours with your knees and hips in line. As you inhale, tilt your tailbone and arch your back while looking up toward the ceiling.
  • Exhale and round the spine toward the roof, and tuck your chin toward your chest.
  • Perform this dynamic move for 3 to 5 minutes for a neutral curve in your spine. This stretch also increases blood circulation in the back, which relieve pain faster.

3. Downward Facing Dog

  • Start on all fours, then lift your hips and straighten your legs as you press them back.
  • Keep your feet hip-width apart and press your palms evenly into the mat. Let your head and neck hang freely from your shoulders.
  • Because of the half-inverted body, the downward facing dog comes in the category of inversion yoga poses.
  • Hold the downward facing dog posture here for 1 to 3 minutes to lengthen your spine, upper back, and scapula. Also, this pose will help you open up dormant muscles in your chest and shoulders.

4. Sphinx Pose

  • Lay on your stomach with your legs extended straight back.
  • Put your elbows beneath your shoulders and support your upper body by resting your forearms on the mat. Make sure the elbows are bent and near to the chest.
  • Lift your head, shoulders, and chest off the floor as you inhale while pressing your forearms into the mat. For 30 seconds, maintain this posture.
  • Lower back discomfort can be relieved when the back is stretched in this position. It also helps to avoid future back discomfort by strengthening your back muscles and enhancing posture.

5. Seated Forward Fold

  • Sit on the floor in the staff pose with your legs extended straight in front of you.
  • Inhale deep and lift your arms up overhead. As you exhale, hinge the torso forward at your hips and fold your body over your legs.
  • Place your hands on the floor before you, keeping your back as straight as possible.
  • Hold this pose for 3 to 5 minutes, breathing deeply. This pose helps to reduce tension in the whole back, tailbone, glutes, and hamstrings, as well as improve flexibility in the spine.

6. Pigeon Pose

  • Start in the downward-facing dog pose. As you inhale, bring your right knee forward and place it between your hands.
  • Keep your left leg extended straight back behind you. Lower your hips until resting on your heels and place your forearms on the floor in front of you.
  • Now, exhale and walk your hands forward until your forehead rests on the floor and the arms extended forward completely.
  • Hold this pose here for 1 to 3 minutes on one side, then repeat on the other side.
  • The pigeon posture is an excellent hip opener and helps to relieve tension in the lower back. It also stretches the inner thighs, hip muscles, and hamstrings simultaneously.

7. Bridge Pose

  • Lie down flat on the back with your knees bent and feet flat on the floor, hip-width apart.
  • Inhale deeply, press your feet and arms to the floor, and lift your hips off the ground until your thighs align with your torso and your arms are parallel to the ground.
  • Interlace both hands' fingers and press your palms into the ground, then exhale and hold this position for 1 to 3 minutes.
  • The bridge posture opens up the chest and stretches the shoulder blades while engaging the lower back, hips, glutes, and hamstrings. It also helps to relieve headaches and neck pain.

Should I do Yoga If I Have Chronic Lower Back Pain? 

Yes, yoga can be beneficial for people who have lower back pain.

Yoga poses can help to stretch and strengthen the muscles in the back, which can improve posture and relieve pain.

In addition, yoga can help increase circulation in the back, speeding up the healing process.

However, it is essential to consult with a doctor or physical therapist before starting a yoga practice, as some poses may not be suitable for people with certain medical conditions.

Do's and Don'ts to Keep in Mind

Performing yoga poses for back pain all alone? - You need to read the below mentioned list of do's and don'ts to be prepared for the best and the worst:

Do's: 

Dos-To-Keep-In-Mind-when-doing-yoga
  1. Always start your practice with a warm-up. Warming up the muscles will help prevent injury and make the stretches more effective.
  2. If you have any medical conditions, consult with a doctor or physical therapist before starting yoga.
  3. When performing yoga poses, be sure to listen to your body and only go as far as you feel comfortable. It is better to do fewer poses with proper alignment than to try to perform complex poses without paying attention to form.
  4. Modify poses as needed to make them feel comfortable for your body.
  5. Use props such as yoga blocks, straps, or bolsters to help you feel more stable and supported in poses.
  6. Breathe deeply throughout your gentle yoga practice to help relax the body and mind.
  7. Focus on your breath and let go of any thoughts distracting you from the present moment.
  8. Finish your practice with some relaxation poses to help the body and mind to wind down.
  9. Drink plenty of water after your practice to help flush out toxins and rehydrate the body.

Don'ts: 

Donts-To-Keep-In-Mind-when-doing-yoga
  1. Don't eat a heavy meal before practicing yoga, as it can lead to indigestion and discomfort.
  2. Don't overstretch or force your body into a pose. Ease into each pose and only go as far as you feel comfortable.
  3. Don't hold your breath while performing yoga poses. Focus on deep, even breathing to help the body relax.
  4. Don't compare yourself to others in your yoga class. Everyone is at a different level and will progress at their own pace.
  5. Don't focus on perfecting each pose. The point of yoga is to relax and de-stress, so let go of any perfectionistic tendencies.
  6. Don't practice yoga if you are seriously injured or feeling pain while performing yoga. Consult with a doctor before starting new yoga routines.

Highly Recommended Yoga Classes for Back Pain Relief

 1. Heal Your Back Pain Yoga Class Series

This yoga class is for anyone experiencing back discomfort, seeking ways to avoid back pain as they age, or anyone recuperating from back surgery or an injury.

In this class, you will get a chance to learn and experience the following:

  • Ways to take control of your back pain treatment. 
  • The yoga poses corporate in this class can help you feel better about your body. 
  • Also, you can employ techniques and tools learned in the course anytime when your back starts to bother you.

This yoga class is FREE with an unlimited subscription membership fee option. 

2. Elise Fabricant Class - Yoga for Back Pain:

With this yoga for back pain session, you'll go back to the fundamentals in an effort to relieve your back pain or avoid it altogether. 

Elise, a seasoned massage therapist, leads students through stretches that encourage blood flow and movement into places that have been blocked or stagnant in the past. 

You'll begin this class with gentle, easy postures on your back before progressing to standing and all-fours positions to stretch and strengthen your back. And, don't forget to enjoy the Spotify playlist that goes with this lesson!

3. Online Yoga classes:

Check out more online yoga classes for Back Pain on Yoga Download and learn yoga at your own pace, comfort, and time. 

Even if you are a beginner, you will find various classes with different levels of posture intensity, so choose according to your body. 

Here you'll find a variety of yoga styles and routines to help you achieve your goals more effectively and efficiently. 

The Final Note

The best way to deal with back pain is to avoid it altogether by strengthening the muscles that surround the spine and your back. 

For that goal, yoga is the ideal beginner-friendly therapeutic fitness program. 

The low-impact nature of these yoga exercises can also aid in calming and quickening your recovery if you experience back pain by supplying vital nutrients, blood, and oxygen to the afflicted areas. 

Additionally, spend money on an ergonomic office chair or a decent kneeling chair to engage your core and improve your posture even while sitting for a longer duration.

Start using this comprehensive guide right away and start enjoying the advantages for the rest of your life. Namaste!