4 Stretches For Lower Back Pain Relief

Stretching for lower back pain relief can be much more complex than simply bending over and flexing the lower spine. 

 In fact, a lot of the time that can only make the issue worse!

In video above I show you 4 of my favourite stretches for lower back pain relief that include rotation, extension, decompression and flexion. Be sure to check out my article here on common causes of back pain

cobra pose

Cobra To Child's Pose

This is a great exercise to decompress the spine (which gives great back pain relief) and flex the lower back muscles as well as bring the mid back (thoracic spine) into extension. I like to use this as a warm up before I train as it's  a great exercise to open up the hips also. 

How To Do It:

Stretch back with your feet flat, your bum on your legs and arms straight (child pose) Now push forward squeezing your glutes and tucking your pelvis  under as you lift your chest up and extend through the thoracic spine. 

The Takeaway:

Be careful of the extension. It will feel amazing on the mid back but if you haven't got your pelvis in the right position, your lower back may not be too happy.

stretches for lower back pain

Reaching Crab

My favourite rotation exercise! I use the reaching crab in numerous ways - as a warm up, cool down, conditioning training, HIIT training etc. Having my hips rotate independently of my upper body is really nice on my lower back. Lifting my hips up high using the glutes ensures that my pelvis is stable as I now reach back and come into extension/rotation throughout the whole spine... which feels amazing!

How To Do It:

Start on all four with your hand under shoulders and knees under hips with your knees off the floor. Kick one leg across and under your body and land it 1/2 way along your torso. Pivot around on the opposite arm until both feet are now flat. Push your hips high into the air as you reach back with the free arm.

The Takeaway:

There's a bit of co-ordination needed for these, but once you have it you have an awesome exercise in your arsneal. The key to this is always revert back to correct starting position and foot placement.

Toe touches

Praying Squat

Not directly a lower back stretch - it still delivers a huge amount of pain relief. 

A lot of the time, the pain you experience in your lower back is caused from tightness in other areas, usually somewhere within the pelvis. The praying squat is a great solution for that!

How To Do It:

Using your elbows to wedge your knees out wide as you squat down will open up those tight hips and adductors. Really take the squat as deep as you can whilst keeping your chest as high as you can. 

You can let the lower back round a little bit here, but the main focus  is the hips, groin and adductors.

The Takeaway:

Ease in to this one. Looking to hit full depth on the first rep could be a recipe for disaster. This will feel amazing on your hips and lower back and keep the breath slow and deep.

stretches for lower back pain

Alternating Toe Touches

This is a great decompression exercise as well as a bit of spinal rotation. Keeping your legs straight as you push back to reach and touch the toes on the opposite leg, you will feel your lower back open up and decompress.

As you reach across as far as you can you will feel your obliques and serratus muscles fire up.

How To Do It:

Starting in a press up position push your hips back whislt keeping your legs straight - like a downward facing dog in Yoga. From here reach your right hand across to touch your left toes. Come back to the center and then repeat.

The Takeaway:

Lovely exercise to stretch out the calves, hamstrings and lower back. Reaching across the body will give that slight bit of spinal rotation as well as fire up your serratus muscles, 

Alan O'Mahony

In Summary

These stretches are great for helping alleviate lower back pain, however the cause of your back pain should always be addressed. Scroll down and fill out your details to get my FREE Lower Back Pain Course straight to your inbox!

About the Author

Hi, I'm Alan, and not sure whether or not to write this is the 3rd person. When I'm not helping my clients create the most amazing and profound fat loss and mindset transformations, I'm usually found teaching my Border Collie (Bertie) new tricks.