According to some studies, over 80 percent of the population will experience an episode of lower back pain at some time in their life.
Low back pain, or “lumbar” pain, as it’s also known, can be caused by a large number of factors; from genetics to fitness level, to pregnancy. Nowadays, though, bad posture (eg. hunching over a laptop) and bad habits (sitting for extended periods without a break), are two of its main causes.
When that’s the case, a good way to avoid back pain (in addition to consulting a specialist), is to stretch that part of your body regularly.
The “7 stretches for lower back pain” below will only take 10-20 minutes of your day, but you’ll benefit from them in the long run. Just relax, take your time, and focus on yourself.
⭐ 7 stretches for lower back pain
1. Child’s pose side stretch
With your left hand crossed over your right hand, move your body forward until your forehead touches the ground. Breathe while holding the stretch and feel your back muscles tighten and relax.
Repeat the movement with your right hand over the left one.
2. Balancing table stretch
While on your hands and knees, extend your right arm and your left leg at the same time. Then do the same with your opposite arm and leg.
Your wrists must be at the same height as your shoulders.
3. Double knee to chest stretch (I)
Lai on the floor, bring your knees up and hug them with both arms.
During this stretch, your tailbone should remain on the ground.
4. Single knee to chest stretch
This stretch is similar to the previous one, but in this case, you only need to bring up one knee a time. Hold it, then change legs.
5. Pelvic tilt stretch
While lying on the floor with your feet, knees and hips aligned; and your arms at your sides with the palms of your hands facing upward, intake and lift your pelvis off the ground while keeping your spine straight.
Hold the posture and then exhale while slowly lowering your pelvis again.
6. Double knee to chest stretch (II)
With one hand on each knee, exhale while bringing your legs up to your chest. Feel your lower back stretch while you sway slowly from left to right.
7. Sphinx stretch
While laying on your belly, legs outstretched (backs of the feet against the ground), and palms placed under the shoulders, push down and flex your lower back until your hips lift slightly off the ground. Hold the pose for a few breaths.
💡 You might also be interested in…
If your lower back hurts because you need to sit for hours on end (say, at your office desk), you might also be interested in reading our articles about lumbar support pillows and coccyx cushions. A combination of the two may help you keep a healthy posture while sitting and avoid fatigue.
📗 Frequently Asked Questions
How long do I have to hold each position?
Ideally, each position should be held for 10 to 30 seconds. However, that might not be possible when you start. That’s alright; small steps. Just ease your way into it and after a while you will be able to lengthen the stretching time.
What happens if it hurts to stretch?
If it hurts, stop immediately and check your posture. If your posture is correct and it hurts again when you try to stretch, you may want to consult a physician. Start gently, listen to your body, and be mindful of its limits.