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Yoga poses for back pain

The world of yoga. In this article you will get to know yoga. I will briefly talk about yoga as power and yoga as meditation. Wherein yoga as therapy will be discussed thoroughly. Yoga is one of the few activities I am doing to ease and or treat my lower back pain. So sit back and enjoy reading.

The world of yoga

The origin of yoga can be traced in ancient India. Yoga is a group of physical, mental and spiritual practices or disciplines as defined by Wikipedia.

I asked random people what is yoga and got various answers. Most of them answered yoga is meditation, other literally said that it is breathing exercise, some said it’s an art. From their responses I would say that they are all correct. Yoga itself is very broad. It is a four letter word with a very comprehensive meaning. It’s fascinating world has so much to explore and I will just touch some of them.

To date, is very popular around the world. Obviously yoga has found its way outside India. Yoga found it’s way in western language and culture. Going back to India, yoga has a deeper purpose which is meditation and spiritual core.

Approaches of yoga

Yoga can be a means to attain a degree of power, yoga as meditation and yoga as therapy.

What is power yoga? In power yoga, a person tries to attain a certain level to have control over the body and mind through intense mental and physical practice. There are lots of power yoga exercises that is available on videos for beginners to follow. To attain this, there should be no distractions like noisy environment or what so ever. People do yoga in a calm, peaceful and relaxing environment. The power is believed to arise through physical posture wherein one masters his or her own body. The second one is through breathing exercise and lastly through the practice of concentration. These three produces energy and control. This might be a difficult level to attain especially for beginners.

Yoga as meditation, meditation is not simply closing your eyes and sitting quietly. Yogis practice meditation often to master the idea of quieting the mind. I it take lot of practice because it is difficult to empty your mind with all those differing thoughts you have. Yogis have been doing meditation there whole life to master the art of meditation. For beginners, it is advisable to practice meditation often. Find your spot where you can have a peaceful moment. Sit with a good posture so as not to feel heavy on the back or shoulders.

Yoga as therapy. Yogis practices certain yoga poses to address certain ailments physical, mental or spiritual. In ayurvedic medicine, certain yoga techniques, postures and breathing can cure different types of illnesses. There are many proven benefits of yoga. The benefits of yoga for lower back pain or back pain in general is what I have experience. I am doing it twice a week in conjunction with other back training that I am doing as planned by my physical therapist.

Furthermore, yoga can also be an effective weight loss training. Every individual is different so try to know and understand your body’s needs.

Yoga poses for my back pain

Basically you can hold each yoga pose for 10.12 breaths (wherein 1 breath is one cycle of inhalation and exhalation). But depending on what level you are then you can hold it up to 30 breaths. These yoga poses can also be modified according to your level. Find your comfort especially if you are a beginner. Below is my yoga routine poses for my back pain. I am sharing it with you because I find it effective.

Before anything else, I start my yoga with a breathing exercise with my knees crossed over the other. Straighten your back, rest the back of your palms on your knees and try to relax. Feel your breathing. I do this for 3-5 minutes to try to relax my mind and put my mind and body on yoga mode. You can of course decide to do it longer if you want depending on your preferences.

This is Vrksasana (tree pose). This pose has different variations according to different levels. You can either choose to do what’s on the picture or you can raise both your arms on parallel position above your head. Again it depends on what you prefer. Tree pose is good for balancing and strengthening of the thighs, and spine.

The Virabhadrasana 1 pose ( low warrior pose) opens the hips, opens the chest and strengthens the arms and legs. This is good for balancing as well. As you do this, you can feel the muscles of your legs being stretched, your chest opens up and that is beneficial for good respiration. You will feel energized.

You have the option to kneel back or straighten your leg, depending on what level you are comfortable with. Don’t force yourself especially if you are a beginner.

Warrior 2 pose. Just like warrior pose 1 in this pose you will develop a good balance and stretches different muscles in your back, legs,arms and shoulders.

There is a modification in this pose as well. You can stretch your arms sideways, twist your hips and face front.

The Bhujangasana (cobra pose). This posture prepares the body for more deep bending. It eases muscle stiffness at the back. I improves flexibility, and tones the buttocks. Try to hold the pose for 15-30 seconds and slowly relax to the floor with exhale.

Do not try to hyper extend especially if you are just starting with yoga. Try to know your body and do the posture where you are most comfortable with.

Cat-cow pose. Start with a table position, both your hands and knees on the floor. Relax your head and slowly arch your back, then do the opposite rounding your back like the cat when it stretches, with your head looking up. This pose is very beneficial for back pain, menstrual discomforts and is good to relieve stress.

The muscles of your back, hips, shoulders and abdomen benefits in this pose.

The balasana (child’s pose). This is common for beginners. It is also a very nice way to relax the entire back. You can hold this position as long as you want and as long as you are comfortable. If you are doing this pose for the purpose of yin then hold it for 3-5mins, but if it’s a counter pose then one minute should be good.

This is a good pose to stretch your gluteus muscle and hamstrings.

The Adho Mukha Svanasana (downward facing dog) is one of the most iconic poses in yoga. The posture helps rejuvenate the entire body. It stretches the entire body muscles which is a good way to develop muscle strength. Just like the cat-cow pose this is also one of the best way to relieve menstrual cramps and back pain. This pose stretches the calves, hamstring and shoulders.

The sarvangasana (bridge pose) pose. This pose stretches the back, neck, abdominal and gluteus muscle. It also opens up the hips and stretches the hamstrings. It calms the brain and central nervous system.

The savasana (corps pose). Often called the final relaxation because this is the final pose in any yoga routine. The body is in supine position. Literally you just let your mind and body relax. This equates the cooling down time of every training or physical exercise.

The above mentioned yoga poses is very effective for my lower back pain. It is my yoga therapy program from the yoga class I am attending. You too can attend yoga classes or if not then there are lots of yoga video for beginners that you can try.

Either you are interested in power yoga or in other types of yoga, a piece of advice is to consult your physician before starting any yoga training. We all have individual needs and have varrying health situations. There might be some contraindications or limitations depending on your case. So always asked health professionals before starting any fitness program.

(The yoga photos is attributed from Icon made by Freepik from www.flaticon.com)

Sources:

  1. Natural healing: remedies & therapies by Mark Evans
  2. www.yogajournal.com
  3. www.doyouyoga.com
  4. https://lovemeditating.com

Happy yoga!

Gillian@giasbeautyandwellness.com


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34 Comments

  1. Informative article. Practicing yoga is very good for health and mind. I was practicing few years back. After reading this post I wanna start my practice again. Thanks for this article.

    1. admin says:

      Hi Kavitha, Try to find time and start practicing yoga again. It helps a lot in our health.

      Kind regards,
      Gillian
      gillian@giasbeautyandwellness.com

  2. Nice post. Back pain is a widespread disease. I’m sure, a lot of people would benefit from these Asanas. When you’re talking about Power Yoga, is it the same as Ashtanga Yoga?

    1. admin says:

      Hi Felix, What I meant about yoga as power is the ability to reach a level in which a person can able to control the mind and body.
      Wherein the Ashtanga yoga involves a series of posture and breathing exercise that detoxifies and purifies the body.

      kind regards,
      Gillian
      gillian@giasbeautyandwellness.com

  3. Hello,
    Wow so much fun to read this. I bookmarked this post so that I can come back and start doing these poses. I have been so physically ill that I have not been able to do yoga, but now I am thinking I might be able to give it a chance now.
    And I love that yoga is about truly coming to your inner self and connecting body and mind.
    Can’t wait to read this again.
    IN peace and gratitude, ariel

    1. admin says:

      Hello Ariel, So glad you liked my article, and yes you can bookmarked and always go back anytime. It’s never too late to start being physically fit. Give yoga a chance I assure you will feel better just like me, been enjoying my yoga classes.

      Kind regards,
      Gillian
      gillian@giasbeautyandwellness.com

  4. Hi Gillian,
    I’ve never done Yoga before but feel that it might be a good time to start. I was very fit for most of my life but a recent shoulder injury has put a stop to my previous gym routine. How would you suggest I ease into a yoga routine?

    1. admin says:

      Hi Marketa, I don’t know how bad your injury is but yoga has so much to offer and has modifications as well depending on your level of comfort. If you read my story on this website you’ll get to know that I have a lumbar problem as well. With my physical thyrapist’s go signal together with my physician I am doing yoga and it has been a great great help. So I hope you can ask your physician as well on yoga programs or postures you can do.

      Kind regards,
      Gillian
      Gillian@giasbeautyandwellness.com

  5. Hi Gillian…Lovely theme and the layout on this post is just amazing. I now feel like I know everything that has to do with Yoga. Great imagery as well, you should teach me how to do that and where you get your images. Keep up the good work. Oh, this is just a side note please take a look at ‘Cat Meffan’ channel on YouTube. She is also quite amazing in Yoga. Cheers

    Best Regards
    Vic

    1. admin says:

      Hi Viki, I would definitely check your recommendation on youtube as I want to expound further. My imagery was atributed from a site at the buttom of my post.

      Kind regards,
      Gillian
      Gillian@giasbeautyandwellness

  6. This is really great information. I have been looking into yoga for other health issues and thought maybe this would be a great way to relieve some pain and muscle spasms. I am hoping with the different stretches, it will alleviate them. I get muscle spasms in my feet and legs at night, I think because I don’t replenish my water from the day at the gym before, LOL. Will yoga also help to stretch these muscles out and get me to sleeping better again?

    1. admin says:

      Hi Matts mom, Give yoga a try, there are different yoga poses that stretches various muscles in the body so I hope it will help to alleviate your problem. And of course re hydrate always, drink enough water. Ask your physician as well about your muscle spasm, it might be related to lack of cetain vitamins and minerals. Hope you’ll get well.

      Kind regards,
      Gillian
      gillian@giasbeautyandwellness.com

  7. Thank you for keeping it simple. Your website is beautiful, and you write very conversationally; I felt like you were here with me, helping. 😊
    I’ve not done yoga before. I want to do these poses to help reduce my lower back pain. Regarding the last pose, svasana, is it done on your back lying on the floor, and should your arms be stretched overhead? I look forward to your reply.

    Laura

    1. admin says:

      Hi Laura, the savasana pose is done lying on the floor. You can have the option to put your arms sideways or over the head. Remember that yoga poses can be modified according to your level and to your comfort. Glad you like the way I wrote my article. Drop by next time for more helpful posts.

      Kind regards,
      Gillian
      gillian@giasbeautyandwellness.com

      1. Hi again! I did the poses. They feel so great, and my back feels much looser and more comfortable already.

        I DID modify the savasana pose by resting my arms out to the sides of my body. (My right shoulder doesn’t like being stretched above my head.)

        Thank you,
        Laura

        1. admin says:

          Hi Laura, Great! happy to hear that you have tried it. Try to do it in regular basis, for sure you’ll feel great.

          Kind regards,
          Gillian
          Gillian@giasbeautyandwellness.com

  8. Hajrah Gold says:

    Hi Gillian,
    I have learnt a lot about the benefits of yoga, but haven’t gotten around starting it yet as I always thought it is some kind of complicated routine. But your article made it more easy for me to visualize. I even bookmarked it for reference sake, and so I could always get back to it anytime I forget something.
    Will start incorporating it into my everyday exercise. Let’s I forget, my favourite poses from above are, the first one, the tree pose, child’s pose, and corpse pose.
    My question is; is it compulsory I complete the whole set as a beginner or just start with the ones I’m most comfortable with?

    Thanks for this great post.

    1. admin says:

      Hi Hajrah, Happy that you bookmarked my post. It is simplified for beginners so you can easily start doing it. It is not compulsary to do all the poses, you can slowly do which pose you prefer and level up next time once you get used to it. Enjoy yoga!

      Kind regards,
      Gillian
      Gillian@giasbeautyandwellness.com

  9. I’ve always heard that yoga is essential for a healthy body and a longer life! So this is great I love the exercises in it to as well may need to give it a try!

    1. admin says:

      Hi Jamaar, Give it a try for the sake of good health.

      Kind regards,
      Gillian
      gillian@giasbeautyandwellness.com

  10. Hi Gillian, thanks for sharing these Yoga poses. I am going to give it a try, need to do something for my lower back pain, hope it helps.

    1. admin says:

      Hi Mariette, Yes you should give it a try. It helped me alot on my back pain I hope it will help ease your back pain too.

      Kind regards,
      Gillian
      gillian@giasbeautyandwellness.com

  11. SeunJeremiah says:

    Thanks for this informative article, I use to think of yoga is  just a good way to relieve stress and tension, I’m glad I learnt it can also help you reducing back pain and maintain a healthy spine, I’m going to follow up these yoga poses you have laid out here. Thanks alot.

    1. admin says:

      Hi Seun, Thank you and welcome

  12. Selenity Jade says:

    Excellent article and timely too!  I’m just starting yoga and going slowly because of my back issues, but because I also have anxiety, I figured yoga would be a good fit for both!  I’m teaching myself from YouTube as I don’t have access to a Yoga studio near me and I work too much to travel the next town over often enough.  

    I learned a few of those poses already, like Cat-cow and child’s pose and downward-facing dog, but I hadn’t seen the tree ones yet.  I’m still trying to focus my breathing properly during the few stretches I’ve started with because with my anxiety I tend to breathe shallowly and rapidly and I’ve needed to slow it down to do the poses right.

    I’m glad to see those other poses you mentioned and that the ones I’m doing you do for your back as well!  Thanks!

    1. admin says:

      Hi Selenity, it´s important that you listen top your body. Slow down if you need to. and yes yoga is good for the mind as well if you are suffering anxiety.

  13. Abayomi says:

    Great and educative article about Yoga, its an excellent exercise and practice, with all the styles of the training, I know is more than an ordinary exercise, my friend always complains of back pain please what kind of yoga practice can she do, your write up is fantastic. Thanks for sharing.

    1. admin says:

      You can share this blog with your friend, as these yoga poses is good for back pain.

  14. Feochadan says:

    Thank you so much for this article.  I used to do yoga for 15 minutes at the very beginning of the day.  I just can’t say how much it improved both my mind (outlook/attitude) and body for the entire day.  Yoga doesn’t have to be complicated.

    You have just given me the much needed kick in the behind to start doing this again!  It takes so little time but yields so many benefits!  I’ve bookmarked your page so that I can start again.

    Thank you so very much for bringing yoga back to my life.  Its not difficult or arduous and the poses you show can be done by anybody!

    1. admin says:

      You said it right Feochadan, it takes a little time but is very beneficial on your health as a whole.

  15. Twack Romero says:

    I’m here vicariously for my wife, who is a back pain sufferer and an armchair Yoga enthusiast. I mean that she hasn’t actually started properly yet but likes the look of it. As a long term sufferer between the two of us we have tried and looked at numerous exercises. We’ve just had a run through of the different poses, conversationally and it looks like a number of them would be ‘doable’. I spent a few years doing ‘Yogalates’, as the name suggests, a mixture of Yoga and Pilates. Never an expert or the most flexible but my core strength improved immensely. It also gave me an insight into ‘breathing’ which in itself is such a huge benefit. Hopefully this article has come at an opportune time.

    1. admin says:

      Hi Twack, Glad to hear that yoga has improved your core immensely. Continue doing yoga, it´s good for the whole body in general.

  16. Wilfredo says:

    Very helpful article! My back and neck have been aching for a while, so I really should start doing some yoga myself. Oh and it would be beneficial not just for me but for so many others if you write an article explaining different yoga poses exclusively for anxiety ( I suffer from anxiety in a daily basis) and I wish to find a way to function more properly. So, please consider this and I would be more than grateful!!

    1. admin says:

      Hi Wilfredo, sad to hear about your anxiety and thank you for your suggestion. I will soon be writing about yoga for anxiety on my coming blogs.

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