YOGA FOR UPPER BACK PAIN

You may get upper back pain when you sit on a desk, drive in a car or stare at your phone. To ease back pain, try these yoga postures for upper back pain relief.

The upper back is affected by excessive screen time and bad posture, and poor posture in general. As more people choose to work from home, finding chairs that promote good posture has become difficult.

Back pain and upper and lower back weakness develop as a result of this. It has become common for school children to experience upper back pain as they have to sit at a desk most of the day.

Further, yoga can help with the stiffness that is associated with upper back pain.
Each day, even 5 minutes of yoga are enough to help relieve upper and lower back pain. Adding these poses to your daily routine will help relieve the tension that contributes to headaches and backaches.

Why yoga postures for upper back pain are Beneficial

Yoga may be what the doctor suggests if you’re suffering from back discomfort. Yoga is a mind-body therapy that’s advised for treating back pain and the stress that comes with it. The right positions can help you relax while also strengthening your body.

Even a few minutes of yoga practice per day might help you become more aware of your body. This can help you discover where you’re tense and where you’re out of balance. You can utilize this knowledge to re-establish balance and alignment in your life.
Continue reading to learn more about how these poses can help with back pain.

9 Best yoga postures for upper back pain

Here are 9 yoga postures for upper back pain you can include in your exercise program that will help you to release the upper back, shoulders and chest pain:

1. Child’s Pose – Balasana

This gentle forward fold is ideal for relaxing and releasing tension in the neck and back. Your spine has been stretch and lengthened. The hips, thighs, and ankles are all stretched in Child’s Pose. This pose can benefit with stress and tiredness relief.

To do this:

Step 1: Begin in Vajrasana, or sitting pose, with big toes together and knees hip-distance apart.

Step 2: Exhale and hinge forward from the hips. Extend your arms in front of you. Make sure your hips stay on your heels.

Step 3: Rest your upper body on your knees and relax your elbows on the mat. Allow your arms and entire body to relax on the floor, palms facing down.

Step 4: Take a few slow breaths here. Inhale and lift back up to exhale.

Duration: Hold the pose for 8 deep breaths.

Variations:

If you have severe upper back pain, walk your hands by the side of your hips and rest your forehead on a block. To relax the lower back, widen the space between the two knees and do a wide-leg child’s posture variation. Place a folded blanket between your rear thighs and calves if you’re having trouble with your knees. Place a blanket under the feet if they are hurting.

2. Cat Cow Stretch

As well as warming the spine, these poses stretch the rhomboids and trapezius muscles, releasing tension in the upper back.

To do this:

Step 1: Begin in the tabletop position, facing the floor. Place your hands beneath your shoulders and your knees beneath your hips. Maintain a neutral spine.

Step 2: Inhale to lower the belly button and arch the back into cow stance, then lift the chin. Bring your chest forward.

Step 3: Exhale to round the back and press the palms into the soil for cat posture, rounding the upper back.

Step 4: After a few repetitions, return to the tabletop posture.

Duration: Hold the pose for 5-10 deep breaths.

Benefits:

  • Improves spinal mobility.
  • Reduces stiffness in the thoracic spine.
  • Stretches the abs and hip flexors.
  • Can help to correct poor posture.
  • Can help to alleviate neck, upper back and lower back pain.

Variations: Use a blanket under the knees if they hurt. To add a twist to your practice, combine this pose with thread the needle. To stretch the back, do this before the puppy pose.

3. Puppy Pose 

The puppy pose is an important restorative backbend for athletes since it stretches the lats and triceps while also releasing tension in the lower and upper back.

To do this:

Step 1: Get down on the floor. Check to see if your shoulders are higher than your wrists and your hips are higher than your knees. Walk your hands a few inches forward and curl your toes under.

Step 2: Move your buttocks halfway back toward your heels as you exhale. Don’t let your elbows contact the ground; keep your arms active. Don’t let your elbows contact the ground; keep your arms active.

Step 3: Allow your neck to relax by lowering your head on the floor or a blanket. Keep your lower back in a small bend. Push your hands down and stretch through your arms while pulling your hips back toward your heels to feel a nice long stretch in your spine.

Step 4: Breath deeply into your back, allowing your spine to lengthen in both directions. Hold for 30 seconds to a minute before lowering your buttocks onto your heels.

Duration: Stay in the pose for a few minutes, breathing in and out through your nose.

Contradiction: Avoid this pose if you have a knee injury.

Benefits :

  • It broadens the chest and shoulders.
  • Tension in the neck, shoulders, and upper back is relieved.
  • Improves spinal mobility, particularly at the thoracic level.
  • It calms the mind and relaxes the body.
  • Can aid in the relief of neck and upper back pain.
  • Reduces stress.

4. Thread The Needle (Urdhva Mukha Pasasana Flow)

yoga for upper back pain

Thread-The-Needle is a beginner twist that improves spinal mobility and can help with pain in the neck and shoulder blades. It is essentially a twisted Puppy pose. To find a position that works for you, follow the instructions below.

Duration: Hold the pose for 3-4 deep breaths on each side.

To do this:

Step 1: Start with Table Top Pose, By keeping the hands and knees at a comfortable distance from each other. Then inhale and extend your left arm above your head, expanding your chest with the extension. When you’re done, exhale out.

Step 2: Take another deep inhalation and bend your shoulders to twist your left arm down on the floor. Then, while twisting the neck and shoulder, place the left arm under the right armpit.

Step 3: Left forearm on the floor. Extend arm as far as possible. Lie the left side of your face down as you do the twist to get a deeper stretch.

Step 4: As you exhale, stretch and extend out completely. For roughly 3-4 breaths, stay in this position. Make sure you’re taking deep, lengthy breaths, and push your shoulders to the right side with each exhalation for a full stretch.

Step 5: To return to Table Top Pose, inhale and loosen the left arm, bringing it out and resting the hands on the floor.

Contradiction: Avoid Thread The Needle pose if you have a knee, shoulder, or neck injury.

Benefits :

  • It broadens the chest and shoulders.
  • Tension in the neck, shoulders, and upper back is relieved.
  • Improves spinal mobility, particularly at the thoracic level.
  • It calms the mind and relaxes the body.
  • Can aid in the relief of neck and upper back pain.
  • Reduces stress.

Read More: Yoga for Headaches | Exercise for headache relief

5. Locust Pose – Shalabhasana

This position is great for developing the muscles of the upper back. Muscles in your lower back, buttocks, and legs are also toned with this technique. In particular, it stimulates the parasympathetic nervous system. Use this pose to improve spinal flexibility.

To do this:

Step 1: Lie down on your stomach with your head on the mat and your feet hip-distance apart. Be sure to keep both of your hands next to your hips.

Step 2: Aim to lift the chest, legs, and arms by inhaling.

Step 3: Exhale and hold this position for a moment. To keep your neck long, look down at the floor.

Step 4: For a few breaths, focus on your belly as it gently moves as you breathe.

Step 5: To return to the starting position, exhale and bring your body back to the starting position.

Contradiction: Avoid the advanced version of the Locust pose if you have a shoulder injury.

Benefits:

  • Heavily engages and strengthens your posterior chain — your neck and back (rhomboids), glutes and hamstrings, and calves — as well as your gluteus maximus and erector spine (back muscles).
  • Stretches the fronts of the shoulders and the chest.
  • Enhances posture.
  • Can aid in the relief of upper and lower back pain.

6. Fish pose – Matysasana

This pose is excellent for releasing tension in the neck, shoulders, upper back, and middle back. It also helps to open up the chest, which is beneficial for respiratory problems and back pain.

  • Duration: Hold the pose for 3-5 breaths.

To do this:

Step 1: Lie on your back, with your feet together and your arms by your sides. Place your hands under your buttocks, palms down.

Step 2: Take a breath, lift your head to look at your navel, and then raise your elbows to your side. Bring your hands closer together and lift your chest to the sky as you do this.

Step 3: Place the crown of the head on the mat by exhaling and lowering your head backwards. Pinch the legs and feet together on the floor. Point your toes in the right direction.

Step 4: Stay in this position for a few breaths, keeping the chest elevated to release the upper and middle back muscles.

Step 5: When you’re ready to come out, take a deep breath to get your head back up so you can look at the navel. Lay back on the floor and relax your arms with an exhale as you do this.

Benefits :

  • Opens the chest.
  • Enhances t-spine mobility.
  • Abdominals, intercostals, shoulders, and throats are all stretched.
  • Quads, hips, and abs are all strengthened.
  • Enhances posture.
  • Can aid in the relief of pain between the shoulder blades.

7. Bridge pose

bridge pose

Bridge pose is one of the most useful yoga poses available. Your spine will be more flexible. Your hips will be more flexible. You’ll be able to get rid of the knee, lower, and upper back pain. This is one of the best yoga postures for upper back pain Relief

Duration: Hold the pose for 3-5 breaths.

To do this:

  1. Set your feet firmly on the floor, lying on your back, comfortably away from the hips
  2. Place your arms across your chest. You can either hold onto the outer corners of your mat or bend your elbows 90 degrees so that your fingertips point to the ceiling.
  3. Lift your hips up and press the backs of your shoulders and feet into the floor on an inhalation.
  4. By engaging the inner thighs, press the inner foot down and keep the knees from spreading out wide.
  5. Maintain a neutral neck by stretching your spine and sliding your shoulder blades down your back. Your hands can be folded behind your back.
  6. Release your arms and roll your spine down on an out-breath to exit the stance.

Benefits :

  • Can aid in the improvement of posture.
  • Legs, quadriceps, hamstrings, gluteus maximus and lower back are all strengthened with this exercise!
  • Legs are stretched, as well as the hip flexor muscles and intercostal and shoulder joints.
  • Spinal mobility is improved with this pose.
  • Increases the capacity to breathe.
  • Knee, lower and upper back pain can be relieved with this therapy.

8. Gate Pose – Parighasana

yoga postures for upper back pain

Lateral stretches can help reduce back pain by stretching out the latissimus dorsi. This stance opens the upper chest and shoulders on both sides. It also separates the spine by stretching the calves and hamstrings.

To do this:

Step 1: Kneel down with your knees hip-width apart, facing the long side of the mat. Rest the heels of your stretched right leg on the mat while pointing your flexed right foot to the top.

Step 2: Take a deep breath and bring the left hand up, keeping the right hand on the right thigh.

Step 3: Exhale as you lean to the right side and slide your right hand down your right leg. With palms facing down, stretch the extended left arm beside the head.

Step 4: Open up the chest by pulling the left shoulder back—lookup by turning your head.

Step 5: To return to the starting position, extend the top arm and return to the centre as you inhale. Rep on the other side, bringing the right leg in.

Benefits :

  • Waist, abdominal muscles, and organs are all toned.
  • Helps with respiratory issues like asthma, allergies, and the flu by increasing spinal flexibility and breathing capacity.
  • It helps with digestion and elimination.

9. Cow Face Pose – Gomukhasana

This is a great way to increase the range of motion in the muscles surrounding the neck, shoulders, and upper back. In addition, it aids in the stretching of the ankles and hips. It is an excellent posture correction position since it stretches and tones the muscles around the chest.

To do this:

  1. In Dandasana, begin in a sitting position with your legs stretched out and your spine upright.
  2. Place the outer edge of the right foot on the floor/mat next to the left glutes and cross the right leg across the left thigh.
  3. Bend your left leg and position the outer edge of your left foot next to your right glutes on the floor/mat.
  4. As much as possible, stack both knees one on top of the other.
  5. Raise the left hand and bend the left elbow, placing the palm of the left hand on the back.
  6. Wrap the right arm around the back by stretching it to the side and bending the elbow. If feasible, clasp both palms at the back.

Benefits :

  • This pose strengthens the shoulders while also expanding the upper spine and relieving shoulder stress.
  • Can aid in the improvement of posture.
  • Legs, quadriceps, hamstrings, gluteus maximus and lower back are all strengthened with this exercise!
  • Legs are stretched, as well as the hip flexor muscles and intercostal and shoulder joints.

Wrap Up

These are the best 9 yoga postures for upper back pain Relief

So go and practise yoga, allow yourself to become healthier, more focused, happier, and more connected, and see where this epic journey takes you.

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