5 Yoga Poses to Alleviate and Prevent Back Pain

On The Go Wellness Chiropractor Miami 5 Yoga Poses to Alleviate and Prevent Back Pain
Do you have back pain? Put the tylenol down and let's do something about it. Something being yoga! It’s a win-win. Good for your mind, and good for your body.

Why You Should Wait for Your Marshmallow

On The Go Wellness Chiropractor Miami 5 Yoga Poses to Alleviate and Prevent Back Pain

Have you ever heard of the marshmallow test? Basically, it was a study on delayed gratification done on children; they were offered the choice between one small and immediate reward or one bigger reward when it was delayed. We want to help you be the kid that waited for their marshmallow, and got double the reward! Bear with us. It’ll make sense.

A simple google search for “yoga for back pain” will probably return things like the cat cow  pose, sphinx pose, and more exercises and stretches that specifically target the back. These are all well and good, and will probably make you feel better in the short term however wouldn’t you rather feel better in the long term? Hence, wait for your marshmallow. Do the exercises that might not immediately make you feel better, and we promise that in the long term, your back pain will be greatly improved, if not completely eliminated (given that it isn’t due to an underlying medical issue-always get checked out)!

Before we get into the actual yoga poses we recommend, let’s just go over the rationale first. Back pain can be a symptom of many things, but one very popular reason is muscle imbalances.

Lower Cross & Upper Cross Syndrome

On The Go Wellness Chiropractor Miami 5 Yoga Poses to Alleviate and Prevent Back Pain

When the muscles surrounding a joint are out of balance (one side is stronger/tighter than the other) it can cause all sorts of pain or discomfort. One example is Pelvic Cross Syndrome (or lower cross syndrome), which can cause back pain and poor posture. An imbalance will affect the way your body moves, causing it to move in an improper way that it struggles to adapt to. There’s also Upper Cross Syndrome for the upper body. Enter; pain and discomfort. No bueno. (If you’re looking for more information about upper and lower cross syndrome, check out this article). 

These yoga poses are a good place to start if you think your back pain may be due to an imbalance. If you need help determining this, come see us. A good chiropractor will always screen you for posture and imbalance issues.

So, here are just a few of the yoga poses we recommend doing long term to help strengthen weak muscles and stretch tight muscles that all surround and support the lower back. Think of your body as an interconnected pulley system. When you pull one side, another side tightens. So the key is to balance out the pulleys.

Get Some Junk In Yo’ Trunk with Glute Bridges

On The Go Wellness chiropractor miami glute bridges

And by that we mean, do glute bridges. This bridging movement strengthens the glutes, and overtime will prevent (or fix) any overcompensation your back may be doing due to weak glutes. The movement involves posterior pelvic tilt, which will also relieve back pain by taking pressure off of the lower back immediately. Over time as the glutes grow stronger, the lower back muscles that were likely tightened as a result of lengthened and weak glutes, will relax.

The Best and Most Boring Exercise: Planks

Okay maybe an exaggeration on all fronts. We’re talking about planks. They suck, in a really good way. Planks strengthen your core muscles, the ones that directly oppose your erector spinae. This means that a weak and lengthened core=anterior pelvic tilt=tight lower back. Get the picture? So, the goal is to strengthen the core muscles, and planks are one of the safest and best ways to do that. A tighter, stronger, core, will help correct that anterior pelvic tilt and better support your lower back.

The Most Awkward Exercise, the Fire Hydrant

On The Go Wellness Chiropractor Miami 5 Yoga Poses to Alleviate and Prevent Back Pain

Ever heard of a fire hydrant? The exercise, not the fire protection…thing. It’s pretty awkward looking, and the colloquial name doesn’t make it any better (it’s named after what you look like when you do it;  a dog peeing on a fire hydrant- you’re welcome, I know you can’t unsee it now). However, it targets some important and frequently neglected muscles; your hip abductors. Technically they’re part of the glutes, but while the glute bridge targets the gluteus maximus, hip abduction movements target the gluteus medius and minus. These muscles help stabilize the pelvis, and as we’ve seen with our other movements, a stable pelvis leads to a less painful back. Check out this Popsugar article that gives me details on how to properly do the fire hydrant pose. 

Be A Good Puppy with Downward Dogs

On The Go Wellness Chiropractor Miami 5 Yoga Poses to Alleviate and Prevent Back Pain

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Open Those Hips with the Lizard Pose

On The Go Wellness Chiropractor Miami 5 Yoga Poses to Alleviate and Prevent Back Pain

The Lizard pose will loosen tight hip flexors (if you sit a lot, this one will feel REALLY good) and open up your hips to reverse the anterior pull on your pelvis that tight hip flexors cause. Check out Yoga With Uliana for instructions on how to get into this pose properly. 

There you have it. These exercises may not immediately feel like they’re doing anything for your back, but when done consistently you’ll reap the rewards of a stronger, more balanced body, and relieve the strain your lower back experiences from improper movement patterns. Now drop and give us a 30 second plank.

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Picture of Dr. Nichole A. Walz

Dr. Nichole A. Walz

Dr. Josh Huddleston, and I are the founders of On-The-Go Wellness®. We are husband & wife, who just so happen to be Board Certified, Licensed, Chiropractic Physicians & Certified Yoga Instructors! After practicing with other clinics in the USA and Singapore for the past 5 years, we decided to start On-The-Go Wellness® to fit our active, mobile lifestyles.

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