Last week on our Panacea de la Montaña blog we posted yoga training exercises which outlined 4 Simple & Effective Yoga Poses for Back Pain. These yoga poses help bring length and space into your spine when you are experiencing pain or tightness in your lower back. This month, we continue with three more yoga poses for back pain to bring some gentle movement and opening into the muscles in that area.
Remember that if you do have a sore back, our yoga in Costa Rica is simple and gentle, and works with the areas around the pain. We suggest you do not try to force the area that is currently in pain to move. Let it first rest and then gently open. Also remember that these yoga poses for the back are intended for when you simply have some pain and stiffness. If you have a diagnosed, serious back problem (such as a herniated disc,etc.), do make sure that you are working with your health practitioners to assure what you are doing is safe for your condition.
More great yoga poses for back pain
Yoga Pose 1 – Traction Twist
Lie on your back, bend your knees, and place your feet on the floor slightly wider than your hips. Take your right (R) foot about 6” farther to the right (or just off your yoga mat) and also 6” farther towards the end of your mat (away from your torso). Move your arms out to the side into a “T” position, palms facing up. Inhale, and on your exhale lower your legs to the left and sweep your R arm overhead. Your R knee should be in line with your nose. Reach up through your R arm, down through your R knee. Stay for 10 breaths and switch sides.
Yoga Pose 2 – Cat & Dog
Come onto hands and knees, hands directly under your shoulders and knees under your hips. On an exhale, draw your belly button up, arch your spine, and tuck your pelvis under while your lower your head. On your inhale, lift your head, sternum, and your sit bones. Repeat this 5-10 more times using nice slow and deep breaths.
Become aware of where in your spine you may feel any restrictions. Then try to breathe into that area, imagining you are bringing more breath there to help “open” whatever is tight. Again, keep breathing length and space into your spine as you do these movements, and keep lightly lifting in and up through the pit of your abdomen (between your pubic bone and belly button) to support your spine.
Yoga Pose 3 – Legs up the Wall (Viparita Karani)
This is one of my all time favorites! This pose helps my low back to relax when tight, and is also great for calming the nervous system, particularly if you are having trouble sleeping. Sit with one of your hips right against a wall, then allow you torso to gently lower to the floor as you swing your legs up the wall. If you have tight hamstrings, let your pelvis be a bit away from the wall. If you can, bring your pelvis fairly close to the wall.
You can use a tri-fold blanket under your sacrum, with just enough room for your tailbone to be off of the edge of the blanket if this feels comfortable on your back. If that is not comfortable, or you are unsure, just use the floor. If your chin is higher than your forehead, place a small blanket underneath the back of your head. Allow your legs to relax down into the hip socket, and feel your low back release down. Stay here for 5-10 minutes, with your eyes closed. This is a great time to simply allow your whole body and mind to rest.