5 Best Yoga Exercises to Do When You Have Back Pain

Certain yoga exercises help ease back pain. (Photo via Pexels/Elina Fairytale)
Certain yoga exercises help ease back pain (Image via Pexels/Elina Fairytale)

Whether you are looking for back pain relief or simply want to stretch your muscles as a way to strengthen your back, certain yoga exercises can be very beneficial.

Various studies have shown that yoga, which emphasizes stretching, flexibility, and strength, goes a long way in relieving back pain and improving overall function.

This ancient practice’s focus on balance, breathing, and steadiness helps the body build a defense against the causes of back pain. These causes include a lack of flexibility as well as weak pelvic, abdominal, and hip muscles.

Yoga exercises aren’t a good idea if you have back injuries or severe back pain. However, those with chronic aches and soreness may potentially benefit from different poses that can help stretch, lengthen, and strengthen the muscles while also improving alignment and posture. In addition, they can also increase your body’s flexibility by enhancing the blood flow to stiff muscles.

Extended triangle pose (Trikonasana), pigeon pose (Eka Pada Rajakapotasana), and 3 other yoga exercises to ease back pain

Here’s a look at some of the best asanas that work wonders in relieving back pain and the discomfort associated with it.

1) Downward-facing dog (Adho Mukha Savasana)

The downward-facing dog pose is a classic asana that offers a great full-body stretch by targeting the back extensors.

The back extensors are the large muscles that support the spine, form the lower back, and help you lift objects.

To do this pose correctly, follow the steps given below:

  • Start the asana on your knees and hands by taking a tabletop position.
  • Move your hands slightly in front of your shoulders and slowly press back while lifting your knees away from the ground.
  • Lift your tailbone towards the ceiling at the same time, and gently push your heels down toward the floor for an added hamstring stretch.
  • Hold the pose for a few minutes and release.

2) Extended triangle pose (Trikonasana)

The extended triangle pose in yoga helps alleviate back pain, neck pain, and sciatica. It gently stretches your hips, groin, and spine while strengthening your legs, shoulders, and chest. Plus, it is also beneficial in relieving anxiety and stress.

To do this asana correctly, follow the steps given below:

  • Stand tall and keep your feet about four to five feet apart.
  • Turn your left toes to face forward and your right toe out at an angle. Raise your arms so that they are parallel to the floor, and keep your palms facing down.
  • Slowly tilt and hinge at your left hip to come forward with your torso and arm. Move your hand towards your leg on the floor and extend your right arm up towards the ceiling.
  • Keep your gaze up, down, or forward and hold the pose.
  • Release after some time, and repeat the asana on the opposite side.

3) Child’s pose (Balasana)

The child's pose in yoga offers an active stretch to the spine and helps elongate the entire back muscle. It is also a potential de-stressor that can help you relax your mind and body after a long, exhausting day.

To do this pose correctly, follow the steps given below:

  • Take a position on all your fours, with both your arms stretched out straight in the front. Slowly sit back so that your buttocks come to rest above your heels.
  • Hold the position and take a few deep breaths.
  • Release after some time and repeat for as long as you can.

4) Pigeon pose (Eka Pada Rajakapotasana)

The pigeon pose is quite a challenging yoga pose, especially for beginners. It helps stretch your hip flexors and rotators, thereby easing the possible cause of back pain.

To do this asana correctly, follow the steps given below:

  • Start in a downward-facing dog position, with both your feet together. Move your right knee forward and turn it out to the right so that your right leg is bent and perpendicular to your left one.
  • Slowly lower both your legs to the floor. Alternatively, you can keep your back left leg extended straight behind you for an added deep hamstring stretch.
  • Pull your back foot away from the floor and hold the position for a few breaths.
  • Switch to the other side and repeat.

5) Sphinx pose (Salamba Bhujangasana)

The sphinx pose helps maintain the natural curve of the back. It also engages your abs, which are useful for supporting your entire lower back muscles.

To do this pose correctly, follow the steps given below:

  • Lie straight on your stomach with your legs together and extended out behind you. Position your elbows under your shoulders and forearms on the ground as you slowly lift your chest off the floor.
  • Press your thighs and hips firmly into the floor and lengthen your spine while keeping your shoulder blades relaxed.
  • Sit up to feel the gentle stretch in the back but do not overstretch.
  • Hold the position for a few minutes and relax.


While these yoga poses are safe and helpful, do not attempt to do them if you have severe back pain. If you are a yoga newbie, be sure to consult your doctor before starting your session, as they can help you determine any risks.

For each of the poses listed above, aim to hold for at least 40 seconds and stop immediately if you experience pain or discomfort.

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