Yoga for upper back: 5 asanas to get rid of sharp pain

We often tend to hunch forward most of the day while using phones and laptops. While this helps to meet our deadlines, keep us entertained or stay connected with people, this habit is also leading to increasing complains of back pain. In fact, back pain is quite common among adults in the world. As per National Library of Medicine, back pain is one of the most common causes for people to go for emergency care. It is generally the lower back pain that gets a lot of attention. But there are also people who complain of burning or sharp pain, muscle tightness or numbness in their upper back. Getting help from doctors is the right thing to do, but you can also try out yoga poses for upper back pain.

To find out which yoga asana is best for upper back pain, Health Shots reached out to global leading holistic health guru and corporate life coach Dr Mickey Mehta. He says that having a strong back brings stability, and is also an indication of a healthy spine. A back which is muscular and well-toned talks about the confidence of a person. Many might think that legs do all the work, but Dr Mehta believes that back takes the overall precedence for all functions and locomotion.

upper back pain
Injury or poor posture can lead to upper back pain. Image courtesy: Adobe Stock

Yoga for upper back pain

Some of the yoga asanas are effective when it comes to stretching and strengthening the muscles of the upper back. While doing so, they also relieve strain and pain. Here are some of the best yoga poses for strong upper back

1. Naukasana or boat pose

You just need to lie down on your stomach then stretch your hands in front. As you inhale, take your hands and legs up like a boat. Hold the pose for 20 seconds then exhale and come back.

2. Setu bandhasana or bridge pose

To do this asana, lie down on your back, fold your knees facing upwards then inhale and lift your buttocks, back, chest area slowly upwards. Hold the bridge pose for 20 seconds then exhale slowly and come back, says the expert.

3. Adho mukha svanasana or Downward facing dog pose

Sit in Vajrasana and keep your hands right in front of you. While inhaling, raise your buttocks, and move your head down. Your heels should touch the ground, but do this without shifting the position of your hands and feet. Hold the downward facing dog pose for some time, exhale and slowly come back.

yoga for upper back pain
You can do yoga if you have upper back pain. Image courtesy: Adobe Stock

4. Marjaryasana-Bitilasana or Cat-cow pose

This is the cat-cow pose for which you have to come on all four limbs. Breathe in and arch your back neck up, breathe out and hunch your back, bringing your torso up.

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5. Phalakasana or plank pose

This is the plank pose and to do this, bring your legs back until your body forms a straight line from your feet up to the head region. Keep your stomach lifted and tailbone tapering down, and let the palms be at shoulder level and hands straight.

Dr Mehta says that other than these asanas, you can take a yoga belt, tie or dupatta. Hold it in front at your shoulder level and do upward-downward movement, circulating clockwise-anti-clockwise. For best results, do this for 10 times each side. This not only helps in strengthening upper back, but also improves shoulder joint mobility and flexibility.

And if you want to avoid upper back pain, you should focus on the right posture and be more careful while lifting up heavy objects.


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