Friday, May 17, 2024
HomeMust ReadHow To Stretch Tight Lower Back

How To Stretch Tight Lower Back

Easy Stretches To Release Lower Back And Hip Pain

3 Easy Stretches For Your Tight Lower Back (WORKS FAST!)

If you are suffering from lower back or hip pain, you are not alone. More than 26 million Americans, between the ages of 20 and 64, experience back pain and, very often, lower back and hip pain are related.

In our current age of technology, many of us find ourselves sitting in front of the computer for most of the day. All of this sitting can cause tightness in the hamstrings, shoulders, and hip flexors, as well as a weakening of the core .

Our deepest hip flexor, the Psoas, is directly connected to our lumbar spine. So if our hip flexors get tight, they will begin to tug uncomfortably at the lower spine, thus causing stiffness and achiness in the lower back and uncomfortable hip pain.

Suffering from a sore neck, back and shoulders? Get our mobility guide to ease pain and soreness.

Fortunately, regularly stretching can help reverse some of this tightness. Here are 9 easy stretches that can be done just about anywhere to relieve lower back and hip pain.

Fixing Your Low Back Pain

If you are experiencing extreme pain, seek medical attention immediately. Even if the pain is not severe, its important to get a proper diagnosis. This way you get get the proper treatment and prevent the risk of re-injury. Book an appointment with your doctor or physical therapist.

In the meantime, there are ways you can ease your low back pain. First off, make sure to avoid heavy lifting until the pain has subsided. Doing so could aggravate the issue and lead to a more chronic problem.

Use heat relief to soothe your pain. Apply heat for 15 minutes at a time. And make sure to place a cloth in between your skin and the heat device. You can try our thermal back brace to bring relief and support to your back.

You can also try the following stretches and strengthening exercise. They can help ease your pain and release tightness in the muscles. If any exercise causes pain, stop or ease off. Adjust and try again. If the pain continues, forego the exercise until your pain levels have improved.

Cat & Cow Stretch

The cat and cow stretch originates from yoga. It helps in maintaining and improving range of motion in your low back. At the same time, it stretches out any tight spots, releasing tension.

How To:

Childs Pose

Core Stability Pelvic Tilt

Lack of core control and stability is a key player in lower back pain. When the abdominal muscles are not performing, the muscles of the lumbar spine have to work harder to stabilize the body in balance. An excellent way to improve core stability is to lie flat with the knees bent up. Tighten abdominal muscles and press the small of the back into the floor. Hold this contraction for 10 seconds and repeat 10-20 times. You can either have your arms resting by your sides or behind your head, depending on whats more comfortable. With this stretch, it is important remember:

  • Keep your feet flat on the floor
  • Keep your shoulders pressed to the floor, but relaxed
  • Do not hold your breath as you perform this exercise


While lower back pain is extremely common, it is not something you have to live with every day. Improving hip flexibility and core stability as well as lengthening the back muscles by stretching can help reduce the symptoms of lower back pain. However, if your back pain is chronic, the above stretches may help but additional treatment may be warranted.

Read Also: Advil Or Tylenol For Back Pain

Exercises To Improve Your Posture

Why postures so important

Having good posture is about more than looking good. It helps you to develop strength, flexibility, and balance in your body. These can all lead to less muscle pain and more energy throughout the day. Proper posture also reduces stress on your muscles and ligaments, which can reduce your risk of injury.

Improving your posture also helps you become more aware of your muscles, making it easier to correct your own posture. As you work on your posture and become more aware of your body, you might even notice some imbalances or areas of tightness you werent previously aware of.

Read on to learn how to do 12 exercises thatll help you stand a little taller.

This resting pose stretches and lengthens your spine, glutes, and hamstrings. The childs pose helps to release tension in your lower back and neck.

To do this:

  • Sit on your shinbones with your knees together, your big toes touching, and your heels splayed out to the side.
  • Fold forward at your hips and walk your hands out in front of you.
  • Sink your hips back down toward your feet. If your thighs wont go all the way down, place a pillow or folded blanket under them for support.
  • Gently place your forehead on the floor or turn your head to one side.
  • Keep your arms extended or rest them along your body.
  • Breathe deeply into the back of your rib cage and waist.
  • Relax in this pose for up to 5 minutes while continuing to breathe deeply.
  • To do this:

  • Remain in this pose for up to 1 minute.
  • Lower Back Stretches To Combat Tightness And Pain

    Pin on Asana Central

    Sink into one of these poses to release those muscles.

    Lower back pain is, unfortunately, very common.

    Just about everything from bad form in the gym to poor posture to genetics can lead to discomfort in the lower back. One of most common causes of lower back pain is that we simply sit too much.

    According to a study conducted by professors at Utica College and presented at the annual Applied Ergonomics Conference in 2015, the pelvis tilts forward when we sit, compromising our spinal posture.

    Additionally, the hamstrings and hip flexors tighten as a result of lack of movement.

    The hamstrings are three muscles that run along the back of our thighs. They attach to the ischial tuberosity region in our lower pelvis .

    Often times, when theres lower back pain, youre typically experiencing tightness in the hamstrings or the glutes. So, always look there first, says Aaptiv trainer Jade Alexis.

    Tightened muscles plus improper spinal posture equals lower back pain. To help you loosen up and release tight lower back muscles and more, we talked to Alexis and Aaptiv trainer Ceasar F. Barajas to learn their go-to lower back stretches.

    Read Also: Will Aleve Help With Back Pain

    Easy Stretches For Lower Back Pain Video

    4 Easy Stretches for Lower Back Pain.

    Back Flexion Stretch

  • Lie on your back.
  • Pull the knees to chest and flex the head forward until stretch is felt on the mid and low back.
  • Hold for 5 to 10 seconds and return to the starting position. Aim to complete 4 to 6 repetitions of this exercise.
  • Kneeling Lunge Stretch

  • Starting on both knees, move one leg forward so the foot is flat on the ground, keeping weight evenly distributed through both hips .
  • Place both hands on the top of the thigh, and gently lean the body forward to feel a stretch in the front of the other leg.
  • Repeat on the opposite leg.
  • Knee to Chest Stretch

  • Lie on the back.
  • Gently pull the knees to the chest with both hands until a comfortable stretch is felt in the mid and lower back.
  • Slowly return to the starting position.
  • Aim to complete 4 to 6 repetitions of this exercise.
  • Piriformis Stretch

    What Can Cause A Tight Lower Back

    Sports injuries, overtraining, and accidents can cause your back to feel tight. Even everyday activities such as sitting can cause tightness.

    Often you develop tightness in the lower back to compensate for an issue in another part of the body. Tight hamstrings and gluteus muscles can also contribute to this tightness. Having poor posture or using incorrect form while lifting weights or having weak core muscles can also play a part.

    There are several other factors that can lead to or complicate a tight lower back. These include:

    • sprains and strains

    Youll typically see improvements within two to six weeks of doing daily exercises. You should see a doctor if:

    • your pain doesnt improve within a few weeks
    • you have intense pain while doing the exercises
    • the pain spreads to your legs

    Also see a doctor if you experience any numbness, swelling, or severe pain. Your doctor can help to determine if any pain or tightness is being caused by an underlying condition.

    There are many lifestyle changes you can practice to help prevent lower back pain. Here are a few guidelines and tips:

    • Adopt a balanced, healthy diet.
    • Maintain a healthy weight.

    Read Also: How Does A Diuretic Help Back Pain

    Home Remedies For Lower Back Pain When Sitting

    In addition to improving your posture when sitting, try these at-home remedies for lower back pain:

    • Change your position. Consider a standing desk or one thats ergonomically designed to help you maintain good posture by allowing you to adjust the height of your monitor.
    • Apply ice.Cold helps reduce inflammation that may be affecting your back. Leave the ice pack on for about 20 minutes, and then remove it. You can do this every hour or so.
    • Use a heating pad. After any inflammation is under control , many people find heat soothing. It also promotes healing by bringing blood to your back.
    • Take over-the-counter medication.Pain relievers like nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs can reduce discomfort and swelling.
    • Use a support. Placing a rolled-up towel or special lumbar pillow at the base of your spine while sitting will help you remember to sit up straight and provide you with some stability.
    • Get a massage. This can help loosen and relax tight muscles.
    • Consider yoga.Yoga is known for its ability to stretch and strengthen the body. Many programs allow for modification of the poses as needed.

    There are several exercises that will help strengthen your lower back. Try these three stretching exercises to help make your back stronger and better toned:

    Your Brain Onthis Is Your Brain On Yoga

    daily stretch routine for a tight lower back-relieve lower back pain

    As a yoga instructor, I have a few favorite stretches for the hips and theyre not just my favorites because they feel good theyre extremely functional and work the hip from all angles. Frangiamore is also a fan of these yoga poses. Stretches like the pigeon pose, warrior 1 and groin stretches all work to lengthen muscles that attach around the hip joint , which become shortened after prolonged sitting or resting, he says. Lengthening these muscles can decrease tension and excessive pull on the hips and lower back which can improve posture and decrease associated pain.

    Ready to get loose? Give these three stretches a try.

    You May Like: Advil Vs Ibuprofen For Back Pain

    Stretches For On The Floor

    Sitting and standing exercises are practical and can be performed in nearly any setting, but stretching on the floor can be even more effective. If you have a private office or a clear area of floor available, these stretches will allow you to stretch more muscle groups in your trunk.

    1. Single Knee to Chest Stretch

    • While lying on your back, slowly bring one knee up toward your chest.
    • Grasp the knee with both hands and gently pull it up towards your chest.
    • You should feel a mild to moderate stretch in the low back, hip, and buttock.
    • Hold the stretch for 15-20 seconds, then repeat 3-5 times on each side.

    2. Double Knee to Chest Stretch

    • While lying on your back, slowly bring both knees up toward your chest.
    • Grasp the knees with both hands and gently pull them up towards your chest.
    • You should feel a mild to moderate stretch in the low back, hip, and buttock.
    • Hold the stretch for 15-20 seconds, then repeat 3-5 times on each side.

    3. Supine Piriformis Stretch

    • While lying on your back, slowly bring one knee up toward your chest as you did with the single knee to chest stretch.
    • Grasp the knee with both hands and gently pull it up across your body toward the opposite shoulder.
    • You should feel a mild to moderate stretch in the low back, hip, and buttock .
    • Hold the stretch for 15-20 seconds, then repeat 3-5 times on each side.

    4. Lower Trunk Rotation Stretch

    5. Prayer Stretch

    6. Lateral Prayer Stretch

    Tips Before Starting A Stretching Routine

    As with any kind of exercise, its important to treat the body with care. Remember that a good stretch puts pressure on the problem areas, but its not supposed to cause sharp pain. Be mindful of the bodys limits and pay attention to proper breathing.

    Here are other tips to maximize the exercises effects without causing further harm to the body:

    • Wear comfortable clothes that wont restrict movements.
    • Prepare the right materials for exercise, such as a yoga mat, yoga block, and foam roller.
    • Dont force the body to follow painful and difficult positions.
    • Follow every step slowly to prevent muscle strain.
    • Perform the exercises on clean and flat surfaces that wont restrict movements.
    • Hold the poses for at least 10 seconds to improve the bodys range of motion.

    Recommended Reading: Mayo Clinic Low Back Pain Exercises

    How To Work These Stretches And Exercises Into Your Routine:

    The next time youre in the gym try adding these to your warm-up. You could even go a step further and begin adding them into a daily routine, multiple times a day if you can. The more frequently you address the problem, the quicker you will be to making it subside. If you have any questions, please ask Fitness Floor staff or a Personal Trainer. They can aid in applying these ideas to your workout and help you to gain the benefits of attending to the health of your hips and low back.

    Rubin Dl. Epidemiology and Risk Factors for Spine Pain. Neurol Clin. 2007 May 25:353-71.

    What Can Cause Lower Back Pain

    lower back stretch

    While every case is different and individual, there are three common causes of pain in your lower back:

  • Muscular pain that comes on suddenly in your lower back is often indicative of a muscle spasm. Your muscles will feel as though they have locked up, and the pain can be severe and debilitating. You will not feel the shooting pain characteristic of sciatic or discogenic pain.
  • Pain in your lower back that is associated with shooting pains down the back of one or both legs indicates sciatica or discogenic pain. A pinched nerve causes this discomfort. It often feels sharp compared to the muscle-gripping sensation that you would feel with a spasm.
  • If you feel a chronic general achiness across the whole area of your lower back, you may have arthritis.
  • Don’t Miss: Aleve Lower Back Pain

    If You Are Reading This You Probably Currently Have Have Dealt With In The Past Or Know Of Someone Close To You Who Has Experienced Chronic Low Back Pain

    In fact, it is estimated that up to 80% of the population will experience low back pain at some point in their lifetime . If you have low back pain you may have even gone as far to get checked out by a doctor, only to find that you have no structural damage and are left with the advice to strengthen your core and stretch more. Despite doing this you may have had no relief from your symptoms or by chance they have become even worse.

    How To Do The Cobra To Downward Dog Stretch:

  • Lying flat on a mat, place your hands just in front of your hips

  • Straighten your arms, keeping your hips in contact with the ground

  • Look up and arch your back

  • Moving to the Downward Dog:

  • Keep your hands in the same position

  • Lift your hips off the ground, as high as possible while keeping your legs straight

  • Move on to your toes, pushing your palms into the ground

  • Move your head in-between your arms, looking back at your feet

  • Don’t Miss: Advil Or Aleve For Back Pain

    Six Stretches To Help Alleviate Low Back Pain And Tightness

    Letâs admit it, having low back pain is no fun, especially when you wake up in the morning with it knowing that you have a full day at work ahead of you. That is why we believe that every morning you should spend a few minutes stretching out the most important and most engaged muscles in the low back.

    Sitting at your desk all day can lead to lower back pain, neck pain, shoulder tightness, and other ergonomic issues. Performing daily stretches can help you loosen your muscles and improve your flexibility, making your body more resilient and better able to handle a full day at your desk.

    • Knee to Chest

    Use this stretch to align pelvis and stretch lower back and rear end muscles. Lie flat on your back with toes pointed to the sky. Slowly bend your right knee and pull your leg up to you chest. Wrap your arms around your thigh, knee or shin, and gently pull the knee towards your chest. Hold for 20 seconds and slowly extend the leg to starting position. Repeat three times each leg.

    • Lying Knee Twist
    • Use this movement to stretch the paraspinal muscles and strengthen the abdominal muscles. Lie on your back with your legs extended straight out. Bend the right knee up and cross it over the left side of your body. Hold in a position that allows you to feel a gentle stretch through the back and buttocks muscles for 20 seconds. Tighten your core muscles and rotate back to center. Repeat three times on each side.

    What Is Causing Your Low Back Pain

    How To Stretch Tight Hip Flexors To Relieve Lower Back Pain

    If you experience low back pain after lifting weights, the most frequent cause is a muscle strain or a ligament sprain. A strain or sprain occurs when a muscle or ligament is stretched past its normal limits. The problem often originates due to bad form or technique.

    Why does bad form happen? You might be lifting too much – the old too much, too soon conundrum – or you may just not have been paying enough attention to your form .

    Another common cause is a herniated disc or a slipped disc. In between each vertebra in the spine are shock-absorbing discs. As we age, these discs become dehydrated. This can cause the disc to protrude. Specific movements may also throw the discs out of place – such as twisting or lifting heavy objects. This protrusion can cause pain and create pressure on nearby nerves. In this case, low back pain is often accompanied by tingling, numbness, or weakness in the buttocks or legs.

    Recommended Reading: Aleve Or Ibuprofen For Back Pain


    Most Popular