Back pain has become so common these days that its unusual to find someone who has never suffered from this condition. Most of us do get affected by back pain at some point in our lives, and for a lot of people out there, it becomes a chronic condition – something that they have to put up with it for the rest of their lives.

how can yoga cure back pain

There are many factors that can cause back pain – hereditary, sedentary lifestyle, incorrect posture, weak back muscles or injury due to sports or exercise. Whatever the cause, most back pain returns time and again. The solution lies in understanding the underlying reason that is causing the back pain and addressing it accordingly.

One of the best ways to prevent back pain is by doing yoga regularly. However, if your back pain is severe, its best to consult a doctor in order to understand why you have pain in the first place. You could be suffering from a minor disc bulge, herniated disc or sciatica. The doctor may advise rest, painkillers, hot and cold compression or physical therapy.

Alternative therapies like acupuncture, chiropractic and osteopathy also work very well in combination with yoga in treatment of back pain. NEVER try to jump the gun, always ensure that you get the underlying condition treated first, let the pain go away and then begin a regular exercise routine to strengthen your back muscles to prevent further episodes of back pain.

If the pain is not too severe, you can also apply muscle relaxant for a few days or get regular massages to relax the strained muscles.

Speaking from my personal experience, I tried self-treating my back pain for quite some time, even hired a personal yoga teacher to help me with my back pain, however the pain didn’t really dissipate. A X-ray and MRI later, I realized that I had a minor disc bulge and would need about a month of physical therapy and lifelong exercise after that to ensure that the pain does not come back again.

I wanted to rush back to my yoga routine but was advised by my therapist against it. Her advice to me was to complete the physiotherapy sessions first and follow it up with light muscle strengthening exercises. Once I had completed this, I could go back to my yoga practice and do it regularly in order to keep my back muscles strong and supple.

Occasionally the pain does return, but I know the warning signals and maintain a regular massage and yoga routine to keep the pain in check. Over the past six years, I’ve not had to go back to the doctor – so I can safely vouch for the fact that yoga and acupressure massage has worked really well for me in treating my back problem.


4 Yoga Poses For Back Pain

If you are looking for a long term and permanent solution to your back pain, yoga is your best bet. The yoga exercises shown below will help in strengthening your back muscles, increase overall flexibility and make your back pain a thing of the past. Just remember that there is no magic wand involved and you need to be regular with your yoga practice to achieve good results.


1. Makarasana – Makarasna, also known as the crocodile pose, is used for relaxation and for relieving pain in the back, neck and shoulders. You can start doing this pose initially for 2-5 minutes and gradually increase the time to as long as you feel comfortable.  One can also do this asana after a long, tiring day for relaxing the back and shoulders.

Take a look at the video below to better understand the way this asana should be done.


2. Bhujanasana – Bhujangasana is also known as the cobra pose as it resembles a serpent with a raised hood. This asana is great for strengthening the entire spinal column and gives a good stretch to the shoulders, abdomen, chest and lungs. Bhujangasana is also included as one of the 12 postures in Surya Namaskar and is very helpful in opening up the back and shoulders. Beginners can do this asana 2-3 times, holding the pose for about 30 counts.

Take a look at the video below to better understand the way this asana should be done.


3. Shalabhasana – Shalabhasana, also know as the locust pose is very helpful in strenghtening and increasing the flexibility of the back muscles. The locust pose is also a part of the 12 basic ananas of hatha yoga. This asana is especially useful in relieving pain in the lower back and sciatica.

Take a look at the video below to better understand the way this asana should be done.


4. Markatasana – Markatasana, also known as the Monkey pose is an excellent asana for the spine and the internal organs of the digestive system. Markatasana provides a good stretch to the spinal cord and is very beneficial in the treatment of conditions like cervical spondylitis, slip disc and sciatica.

Take a look at the video below to better understand the way this asana should be done.


 A Holistic Approach Towards Treating Your Back Pain

Back pain can become chronic if not treated properly. In case of severe or persistent pain, It is best to consult an orthopedic and take his advise before attempting self-treatment. If you decide to take up yoga, ensure that you learn it from a reputed and experienced teacher. Also, combine your yoga practice with regular visits to a professional massage therapist. Trust me, your back will really thank you for it!



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