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The Best Exercises for Stretching and Maintaining the Back

Stretching and Maintaining the Back. This exercise is vital to maintain optimal health and live a life full of vitality. It is suggested that the average person should perform at least 150-minutes of moderate or 75-minutes of intense exercise per week to stay healthy

As we get older, we seem to find less time and more excuses as to why this gets a little too hard; not enough time, busy with the kids, busy at work, sound familiar?

Another common excuse that you hear all too often is my back hurts! We all experience back pain to some degree at various stages of our life, and it can be debilitating. Some people will experience upper back and shoulder pain, others, mid and lower back pain.

If this sounds like you, then I have a question for you; what do you do to help your back? People spend good money maintaining their cars, homes and businesses, but not so much on one of the most important structures we own, our backs.

Our backs are working tirelessly for us from the day we are born till the day we die, and unless you are unfortunate enough to suffer from severe disease or injury, they do a pretty good job of it!

There are many ways to help reduce pain and keep your back muscles supple and healthy, including:

For more information please try the following books available today

Stretching and Maintaining the Back. These things can cost a lot of money to attend or learn and may be out of some people’s grasp.

The good news is, you don’t have to be an expert yogi to reap the benefits of some rudimentary daily stretches. In fact, after just a few days of consistent attention, you may be surprised how much better you feel, and how much more motivated you will be to get moving

Below we will discuss three of the best back exercises you can do daily to reduce back pain, as well as stretch and strengthen your entire back to help you live your best life that little bit better. Read on to learn more.

Stretching and Maintaining the Back Best Upper Back Exercises

The upper back is the region below the cervical spine or neck and runs down the length of your thoracic spine; this is the most stable part of your spine and is often affected by long hours at your desk or workstation.

Dead hangs

Hanging is easy and comes with a wide range of benefits. Dead hangs are not only good for the upper back but also good for your shoulders and lower neck.

Some of the many benefits of performing dead hangs include:
  • Decompressing the thoracic vertebrae
  • Stretching the back muscles and the latissimus dorsi
  • Relieving shoulder pain
  • Increasing back, neck, arm and shoulder strength

In fact, so far as your shoulders go, which work symbiotically with your upper back, board-certified orthopedic surgeon John M Kirsch, M.Dhas stated that hanging for up to 30-seconds, three times a day could fix up to 99% of shoulder pain.

And it is easy to do. If you are able, grab onto a chin-up bar, yoga-frame or door with your arms close to your ears, and slowly drop your weight onto your arms, increasing your relaxation as you feel comfortable.


Start slowly and build-up over a few weeks, you will be amazed at the reduction in the upper back and shoulder pain, and you will develop more strength for other exercises as your workout routines intensify.


Some other excellent upper back stretches and exercises include:

Cat-Cow Back Stretches Video

The best part about these three upper back exercises is that you don’t need any equipment. Give them a try!

Best Mid-Back Stretches

The mid-back and upper-back both contain the thoracic vertebrae. The mid-back start just around the lower rib cage and ends where your lumbar, or lower back is located. Stretching and Maintaining the mid-Back section this area can be very painful if tight or inflamed and can sometimes be mistaken for kidney pain.

If you are showing any other signs of kidney malfunction like bloody in the urine, non-local muscle cramping or abnormal swelling, it is strongly advised to seek medical attention.

Passive Backbend

The best thing about this exercise is that you don’t need to do anything but lay still! The only equipment you will need is a yoga block, or a rolled-up yoga mat or towel.


GYSPOR-Yoga-Blocks-2-Pack-Set-9x6x3-with-Yoga-Strap-and-Sports-Bag-Non-Slip-Surface-High-Density-EVA-Foam-Yoga-Block-for-Pilates-Stretching and Maintaining the Back

If you are not ready for something as high as a yoga block, then a rolled-up towel is an excellent place to start until you develop more flexibility in your mid spine and your muscles to relax and stretch.

GoSweat-Non-Slip-Hot-Yoga-Towel-by-Shandali-with-Super-Absorbent-Soft-Suede-Microfiber-in-Many-Colors-for-Bikram-Pilates-and-Yoga-Mats-Stretching and Maintaining the Back

Lay on the floor or on a yoga mat and place the rolled-up towel under your mid-back. Your only job then is to breath, and relax. Try free streaming sound tracks like these relaxing music, binaural beats or a guided meditation to optimize your relaxation.

Other good exercises for the Stretching and Maintaining the Back include:

After a few weeks of using a towel for this stretch; you may be able to increase your mid-back stretch height. However, go slow; give your spine and muscles a chance to adapt.

Threading The Needle

Stretching and Maintaining the Back A Stiff Lower Back Exercises

The dreaded lower back pain! It can be a pain in the butt, the back and the legs! 

Lower back pain is often complicated to isolate, and can be triggered by several factors, including tight hip flexors and glutes, and obstructed or compressed sciatic nerves.

One of the best lower back exercises to stretch these tight back muscles is with piriformis stretches, and the easiest one to do is the wall piriformis stretch.

Wall Piriformis Stretch

This lower back stretch may be a little more challenging than the passive backbend. But requires just as little effort, and the only equipment you will need is a wall or a door frame.

Lay down on the floor or a yoga mat and lift one foot onto the wall or door frame with a bent knee (you may have to slide closer to the wall to maximise the stretch). 

Cross one leg over the other at the knee, and allow your body to drop slowly- this creates an intense stretch across your whole lower body, and you will know when you find the sweet spot.

The closer you slide towards the wall. The deeper the stretch. It is not a race; take your time and increase the stretch’s intensity over a few weeks. You will not only gain pain relief and flexibility in your lower back, but you will also see results in your hips, calves and mid-back.

Other great Stretching and Maintaining the Back Exercisers for your Lower Back Include:

If you don’t have a wall or door frame handy, try holding your front foot with a yoga strap. It may need a bit of getting used to, but it can be just as effective in treating a stiff lower back.


When Stretching and Maintaining the Back Be Careful and Go Slow

Before starting any exercise regime. It is always worth consulting your healthcare professional. If you are experiencing chronic pain, heat or breathing difficulty or have any existing injuries, speak to your doctor before attempting any of these exercises.

Did you find this information helpful? Stretching and Maintaining the Back? What stretches will you be trying to gain strength and flexibility in 2021. Join our mailing list at myfreeyoga to receive updates about other interesting health articles, get regular product updates, and gain access to exclusive deals and offers.

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Avatar of Melissa Hall About Author

Hey there and Welcome! I'm Melissa and I'm the author of My Free Yoga. We started back in 2009 as a resource for people needing advice on yoga and yoga products. Today we are working hard to cover everything product related to yoga.

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