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Yoga for Back Pain Relief: How yoga asanas help to overcome back pain

Yoga for Back Pain Relief: How yoga asanas help to overcome back pain

Discover the power of yoga in combating back pain! 🧘‍♀️

Instead of reaching for medication, embrace this ancient practice to improve your body’s biomechanics and overall well-being.

  • Muscle Relaxation: For instance, the Child’s Pose (Balasana) effectively reduces strain on the paraspinal muscles and relieves pressure on the intervertebral discs, calming the nervous system.
  • Core Strengthening: The Plank Pose activates the abdominal muscles and strengthens the deep muscles that support the lumbar spine, enhancing stabilization.
  • Stretching to Reduce Tension: The Standing Forward Bend (Uttanasana) and Seated Forward Bend (Paschimottanasana) help relax the muscles in the back of the thighs and buttocks, which can alleviate lower back pain.
  • Posture Improvement: The Mountain Pose (Tadasana) and similar poses promote proper spinal alignment, reducing the load on intervertebral discs and encouraging an even distribution of body weight.
  • Breath Awareness: Pranayama and breath control in poses soothe the sympathetic nervous system, lowering cortisol levels and reducing stress’s impact on muscle tone.

Yoga not only supports the physical body but also contributes to emotional well-being. Regular practice can improve your flexibility, strengthen muscles, and enhance posture, offering a comprehensive approach to managing back pain. Discover the benefits of yoga today and sign up for online yoga sessions!

Let’s explore how each group of yoga poses affects the health of your back and spine.

Spinal Twists: Anatomical Insights and Benefits for Back Health

  • Spine Structure:
    • The spine consists of vertebrae, intervertebral discs, joints, and muscles. Many of the muscles that rotate the spine are located along the paraspinal area.
  • Supporting Stability:
    • Twisting poses are aimed at activating core muscles and rotational muscles that support spinal stability. This is especially crucial for preventing issues such as disc degeneration or herniation.
  • Stretching and Strengthening Muscles:
    • Twisting asanas stretch and strengthen the back muscles. For instance, “Matsyendrasana” (Lord of the Fishes Pose) involves rotating the body, stretching, and strengthening the lateral and posterior muscles.
  • Improving Spinal Flexibility:
    • Twisting helps to enhance the flexibility of the spine, reducing its stiffness. This can be particularly beneficial for those dealing with disc compression or limited range of motion.
  • Stimulating Segmental Movement:
    • Twists activate segmental motion, allowing each part of the spine to move independently. This promotes an even distribution of load and reduces pressure on specific areas.
  • Supporting Optimal Spinal Curvature:
    • Strengthened rotational muscles help maintain the spine’s natural curvature, preventing excesses such as lordosis or kyphosis.
  • Influencing Nutrition of Intervertebral Discs:
    • Twisting can stimulate blood flow and nutrient delivery to the intervertebral discs, enhancing their vitality and reducing the risk of degenerative changes.
  • Reducing Tension:
    • Rotating the body can help alleviate tension in the muscles surrounding the spine. This can ease pain and discomfort.

Practicing twists in yoga can be an effective way to strengthen, stretch, and support the health of the spine, promoting its optimal function and preventing various disorders.

Twisting yoga poses, such as “Matsyendrasana” (Lord of the Fishes Pose), can adjust and improve the condition of the spine through the following factors:

  • Engagement of Strengthening Muscles:
    • Twists engage rotational muscles, such as the internal and external obliques, strengthening them. This can help maintain spinal stability
  • Stretching Lateral Muscles:
    • Twisting movements stretch and relax the muscles along the sides of the spine, easing tension and promoting proper load distribution
  • Activation of Segmental Movement:
    • Twists encourage the activation of segmental movement, allowing each section of the spine to move independently, which promotes even load distribution.

Yoga poses focused on elongating the spine, such as “Uttanasana” (Forward Bend Pose), can correct and enhance the condition of the spine through the following factors:

  • Stretching the Back Muscles:
    • Elongation helps stretch the muscles of the back, including the upper and lower latissimus dorsi muscles. This assists in relieving tension and improving spinal flexibility..
  • Relaxing the Intervertebral Discs:
    • Poses that require elongation can help align the intervertebral discs, reducing pressure and improving nourishment to the discs..
  • Supporting Normal Spinal Curvature:
    • Elongation promotes the maintenance of the spine’s natural curvature, preventing complications and enhancing posture.

Backbends in yoga, such as “Bhujangasana” (Cobra Pose) or “Urdhva Mukha Svanasana” (Upward Facing Dog), can improve the condition of the spine through several factors:

  • Stretching the Front Muscle:
        • Bends activate the body’s front muscles like the rectus abdominis and pectoral muscles, promoting their stretch. This helps improve spinal flexibility and aligns your posture.
  • Strengthening the Back Muscles:
        • Bends strengthen the back muscles, especially the erector spinae, which supports spinal stability and helps avoid posture issues.
  • Aligning the Spine’s Curvature:
        • Poses with bends contribute to aligning the spine’s natural curvature, preventing complications and enhancing flexibility.

Power yoga poses like “Virabhadrasana” (Warrior Pose) or “Utthita Trikonasana” (Extended Triangle Pose) significantly strengthen muscles and enhance spinal function. Here’s how they work:

      • Core Muscle Activation:
        • Power poses engage core muscles such as the rectus and transverse abdominis, stabilizing the spine. This increases stability and protects against strains.
      • Strengthening the Back Muscles:
        • Poses that require forward or backward bending activate and strengthen the back muscles. This is beneficial for preventing issues like herniated discs or muscular imbalances.
      • Maintaining Spinal Flexibility:
        • Isolated movements in power poses promote spinal flexibility, preventing stiffness and preserving a full range of motion.

Inverted yoga poses like “Sirshasana” (Headstand) or “Sarvangasana” (Shoulderstand) can greatly benefit your spine in several ways:

      • Alignment of the Spine and Reduction of Compression:
        • Inverted poses help stretch and align the spine, reducing the squishing (compression) between the discs in your spine. This can ease pressure and boost blood flow to the spinal area.
      • Strengthening Back Muscles and Core Activation:
        • These poses activate your back muscles, including the erector spinae, and strengthen your core. This helps keep your spine stable and prevents muscle imbalances that can lead to pain.
      • Stimulation of the Thyroid Gland:
        • Certain inverted poses can stimulate the thyroid gland, which is key for hormone balance. This can positively affect your overall mood and energy levels.

Yoga stretches can alleviate back pain through the following mechanisms:

      • Muscle Relaxation:
        • Stretching promotes the relaxation of tense muscles, especially in the back area. This helps alleviate strain and reduce pain.
      • Spinal Decompression:
        • Proper stretches can aid in decompressing the spine, reducing compression between intervertebral discs and easing pressure on nerves.
      • Improved Flexibility:
        • Regular stretches enhance spinal flexibility, supporting proper alignment and preventing pain due to incorrect posture.

When dealing with back pain, consider these tips during your yoga practice:

What to Do:

      • Gentle Stretches:
        • Include easy yoga moves that stretch your back, like “Balasana” (Child’s Pose) or “Sukhasana” (Easy Seated Pose).
      • Posture Awareness:
        • Focus on keeping a proper posture during poses. Make sure your spine is straight and aligned.
      • Listen to Your Body:
        • Pay attention to how your body feels. If a pose hurts, stop and switch to easier ones.

What Not to Do:

      • Avoid Deep Backbends:
        • Stay away from poses with deep backbends, such as “Urdhva Dhanurasana” (Wheel Pose).
      • Don’t Force Movements:
        • Don’t push yourself too hard or force your way into poses. Take it slow and relax.
      • Pay Attention to Pain:
        • If something hurts, don’t ignore it. Stop and, if needed, talk to a healthcare professional.

Remember, yoga is about harmony and balance, not pushing beyond your comfort zone. Stay safe and enjoy your practice!

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With love, your yoga teacher Iryna Yahubova.