Posts Tagged ‘pain in the back’

Therapeutic Yoga for Back Pain

Friday, June 15th, 2012

therapeutic yogaBy Faye Martins

Back pain can take over every aspect of your life, making even day-to-day existence a chore. Many people turn to doctors and medications to relieve back pain, but there’s actually a much simpler solution. There are many yoga poses that will stretch the back and leg muscles to relieve discomfort. Yoga is more than a temporary solution; it provides long-term results for as long as you continue your practice. Even beginners can perform simple stretches for nearly instant results. If you’ve never tried yoga before, it’s definitely worth a shot at relieving the discomfort and added stress that back pain can bring.

Causes of Back Pain

Chronic pain in the back can be misleading, because its root cause might actually be weak abdominal muscles, tight hamstrings, or just a general lack of flexibility in all of your body’s muscles. In order to get your back feeling better, your body needs overall stretching and strengthening. Long, lean muscles will support your frame and eliminate extra pressure on your back. The hips, spine, and legs being out of alignment with each other might also cause back pain. All yoga poses work to bring the body back into proper alignment, thereby reducing or eliminating back pain.

Standing Forward Bend Posture – Uttanasana

The forward bend is a wonderful pose to release and stretch all the muscles in the back of the legs and thighs. It can also be invigorating for the mind, as it renews the blood supply to the brain upon coming out of the pose. To perform a forward bend, stand with feet about hip width apart with the toes pointed forward. Reach up with both arms, then tip forward and down from the hips. Release your head and neck, allowing your body to hang with your torso touching your thighs. Hold each elbow with the opposite hand. Breathe deeply and slowly, allowing all of your muscles to release. When you’re ready to come out of the pose, slowly lift your torso up, keeping your spine straight. Allow the blood to flow back down your head, neck and spine before going into the next pose.

Wall Plank Posture – Half Chair Pose – Ardha Utkatasana

The wall plank is similar to the forward bend. Stand in front of a wall, so your outstretched hands will be able to rest flat on the wall. Firmly plant both hands with the fingers flat and pointing upwards. Step slowly back from the wall, bending from the hips, until your back is flat. Your body will form an L-shape. Elongate the spine by lifting the navel in towards the spine. Breathe deeply and slowly, holding the pose for as long as it feels comfortable. Slowly lift your torso up to release the pose.

© Copyright 2012 – Aura Wellness Center – Publications Division

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Yoga for Back and Neck Pain

Tuesday, April 17th, 2012

restorative yoga teacher training for painBy Dr. Paul Jerard, E-RYT 500

Chronic pain affects the lives of many people who sit at computers all day, spend hours driving, or work at desks. These types of jobs can result in stiffness and pain in the back and neck, which is hard to relieve. Massage or exercise can release the pain for a many people, but it may come back after only a day or two. Yoga can also practiced as a therapeutic method to treat chronic pain. There are many specific Yoga poses that will release tension. The meditative and breathing aspects of Yoga also aid in releasing the stress that often causes the pain.

The Source of Pain

Chronic neck or back pain can be tricky, because the source of the pain can be difficult to pinpoint. It might be related to tight muscles in the legs or elsewhere in the body that does not necessarily hurt. Hatha Yoga stretches the entire body, making the pain go away and preventing new aches and pains from occurring. The Yoga postures also strengthen these muscles, creating balance between opposing muscle groups, which makes them less likely to hurt. 

Consult Your Physician 

You should always let your primary care physician know what your state of health is and what actions you are taking in order to improve your health or reduce pain in your life. Most doctors and chiropractors are fine with Yoga, but you should still contact your health care professional, because he or she knows your specific health profile and case history.  A phone call to your doctor’s office is painless and you may learn new information about your specific health profile.

Yoga Poses for Pain

Yoga postures can be practiced anywhere, anytime. Someone sitting at a desk for hours at a time can easily take short, but frequent moments to stretch the body. The following Yoga postures can be practiced as a home routine to help relieve back pain: seated twist, bow pose, bridge pose, camel pose, cat and cow poses, downward dog, side angle pose, triangle pose, and forward fold.  


If you are new to Yoga, please seek out formal instruction from a competent Yoga teacher, who teaches a gentle and therapeutic style. Never force your body into any position or lock your joints.  When folding or twisting the body, you must be able to breathe completely.  If you cannot breathe, you are in too far and need to back out of the posture to the point where you can completely inhale and exhale.  Some specific postures may not agree with your back or neck.  Each person’s back or neck condition is uniquely different.  Therefore, any positions that cause pain should be stopped immediately.

Many of the Yoga poses for back pain also relieve neck pain. In addition to the previous poses, you can relieve and eliminate neck pain with these postures: child’s pose, corpse pose, extended puppy pose, eagle pose, dolphin pose, and shoulder rolls.

Pranayama to Reduce Pain

The importance of breathing to relieve pain should not be overlooked. Many people forget to breathe deeply throughout the day, which deprives the body of fresh oxygen supplies. Neck pain can also be caused by shallow breathing, which causes the neck muscles to contract instead of the diaphragm. 

Neck pain can sometimes be relieved by sitting in easy pose and breathing deeply for several minutes. Close your eyes, inhale, and focus on filling up the belly and chest, then slowly release the breath. Concentrate on keeping the shoulders down and the chest open. If this is done every hour or so, neck pain will be substantially reduced.

© Copyright 2012 – Aura Wellness Center – Publications Division

To see our selection of Online Yoga teacher training courses, please visit the following link.

See our testimonials to find out what our graduates have to say about teaching yoga students and our selection of online yoga instructor certification programs.

If you are a teacher, yoga school manager, blogger, e-zine, or website publisher, and are in need of quality content, please feel free to use my blog entries (articles). Please be sure to reprint each article, as is. Namaste!