Soothing Back Care Routine
Do you or have you ever suffered from back pain?
Most of us have, particularly pain in the low back more than once and some of us on a daily basis.
A strong healthy back is essential to our well-being and vitality…but back discomfort is ever increasing, now we live in a more sedentary world – sitting at a computer desk for too long, driving, relaxing on the sofa… This all weakens our otherwise healthy backs and we develop poor body posture! We all need to move more! So, Here are some helpful tips for soothing an achy back.
My Soothing Back care routine can be as quick as 15 minutes, taking 5-10 long and deep breaths in each pose or you can stay longer to maximise movement and feel deeper release for the back.
All of us can benefit from these very simple exercises – give them a try today! Find what works for you and apply it to your daily life! If you have low back pain, practice this either first thing in the morning or right before you go to bed in the evening and stick with it daily until you feel better…Heal Your Back!
Start on your back, relax and B R E A T H E.
L O W. B A C K. R E L E A S E. P O S E
Pull your knees into your chest and rock from side to side. This posture will help to release a tight low back and the sacrum. It can be used as a rescue posture when you are in pain and discomfort and the rocking motion will massage the low back and may just be enough to niggle out any trapped nerves, relieving sciatica pain.Plus the deep pressure touch sensation can kick start the body’s natural healing potential.
H A P P Y. B A B Y. P O S E
Add this hip opener stretch, let the knees separate, then grab your feet with your palms wrapped around the outer edge pulling your feet down towards your navel, letting the knees spill over the rib cage/sides of your body. Stretching the muscles around the hips will help to lengthen muscles in the lower back.
Now try the Reclined B I G T O E. P O S E
Stay lying on your back with your legs stretched out, and bend one knee into your chest. Place a strap or a belt over the ball of the foot and use that to help you reach. Extend the leg straight up to the ceiling, flexing the foot. Engage the lifted leg and start to softly draw it closer to your upper body using the strap. Once your in the full pose (you want sensation, not pain), press the ball of the foot up. The back of the head is relaxed on the floor, shoulders down the back, neck soft. If you suffer from intense pain, keep the lower keg bent with the sole if the foot on the ground until you’re comfortable enough to extend it on the ground. Breathe deeply then switch sides.
B R I D G E. P O S E
Gentle back bending will strengthen the entire spine, you can move through this bridge pose and practice a moving meditation, inhale pushing the hips up to the ceiling (hold for a few seconds) and exhale to lower the spine down to the earth, from the top of the spine slowly back down to the base.
Make sure you keep the knees inline with the hips. Don’t allow your knees to fall away from each other! Pull the inner thighs towards each other if this happens.
You can press up higher into the pose if it feels right. Lift your hips higher and clasp your hands together underneath you to lift up onto the shoulder blades.
At any time you can go back to the back release pose by pulling your knees into your chest as a counter pose.
Now S U P I N E. T W I S T. P O S E
Twist postures will really help to realign the spine, they wring out any tension and stiffness, very detoxifying by nature and help to squeeze out toxins in the internal organs. Hug one knee into your body and let the opposite hand drag it across your body to ground the knee down into the earth…
Hold here and breathe then work the other side or move side to side in a moving twist pose by pressing the sides of the feet, legs and knees together, arms at T-position with shoulders relaxed, dropping the knees to the earth and looking in the opposite direction to where the knees fall. Repeat other side.
Now turn over and onto your belly for….
C O B R A. P O S E
Be mindful with this pose as it is a deeper back bend, so if you feel any pinching, pain or sensitivity in the low back just come out (rest in crocodile pose: on your belly with legs really wide and your arms in a diamond shape/elbows bent near your face) for cobra pose lay down on the belly…inhale to slide your hands underneath your shoulders, pressing your pelvis into the earth and start pressing up slowing to peel the chest off the floor. Make sure elbows stay bent and squeeze them into your rib cage. Hold then exhale and lower down. Repeat up to 5 rounds.
A great pose for opening up the back of the body. Breathe really deep in this pose, take the breath all the way down to the low back and feel the breath spilling up to the top. Expand the back of the rib cage with new energy and these deep breaths will lift up the back of the body, opening and expanding.
Relax, breathe and close your eyes.
If you want to stretch your upper back and shoulders keep your arms stretched out, straight and strong reaching fingertips away from you.
Another variation here.
Press up and onto your hands and knees to practice
C A T. C O W. P O S E
Movement for the entire spine, flexing, arching and rounding the back will create suppleness.
Inhale and dip the belly, lift the tale bone up to the ceiling to look up and exhale rounding the back, press down into the palms and tilt the tale bone under, look through the thighs.
You can strengthen your low back with L E G. L I F T S
A lifting and balancing pose…
Squeeze the belly into the spine, inhale and at the same time lift and extend one arm out in front of you and the opposite leg behind you, hold ..,then exhale to lower down. Repeat other side up to 10 rounds.
End with another T W I S T… Seated Twist pose
Come into a seated position, crossing one leg over the opposite knee. Take your opposite elbow to knee pushing it away from you as you start to twist, let the core control all the movement, taking the free hand behind you press the palm down into the earth and roll the spine up to stand. Push the shoulder down away from the ear and look over the shoulder to add a neck stretch.
Lastly, relax and meditate in Legs-up-against-the-wall Pose…
Come into a squatting position with your outer hip facing the wall. Set your sit bones down and swing your legs up the wall, then wiggle your sit bones as close to the wall as you comfortably can. Flex your feet. If your hamstrings are very tight (one of the biggest reasons we get low back pain in the first place), place a folded up blanket under your tailbone and keep your knees a little bit bent if needed. Relax your lumbar spine and RELAX. Stay for five minutes or more, focusing on your breathing and allowing the tight muscles in the low back release.
Stay until you’re feeling some relief.
To help heal back pain even more you can eat anti inflammatory foods such as turmeric, fish and green vegetables to help reduce inflammation and add ice packs to reduce swelling if you’re in too much pain to move.
You do not have to live with this pain!
Join me every Monday 7.30pm in my Back Care Yoga class where we move and heal the entire back through a series of stretches and relaxations, from standing to sitting postures and floor exercises. Bolsters, straps and chairs are also used in my class to add maximum comfort and release for the back.
You are only as young as your spine is flexible! And the discomfort you feel now will not go away on its own!
Leave a comment if you have any questions and I will help you out.
Love and light