Browsing Tag

yoga for the lower back


Some More for Your Back

May 4, 2016

My blog about how you can use a rope to manage, heal and even reverse causes of back ache has been hugely successful.  It’s great that a lot of people with chronic back ache and even disc bulges and slipped discs have tried this blog and  come back to me with positive reviews.  In this blog I’d like to explore alternative asanas which also provide relief from back ache.

pomelo_20160503124108_save.jpg1.  Start with the Ashwasanchalanasana, also called the Low Lunge.  Ensure that your back knee is locked and try and push your hips as close to the floor as possible.  This creates opposing forces within the body and this helps in easing out the kinks in your lower back.  This also stretches the hip joint and strengthens the quads.  When you focus on pushing your heel back, you will feel a stretch on the back of the calves as well.

2. Now place the knee on the floor and intensify the stretch a bit more. pomelo_20160503124123_save.jpg

3.  Now place your elbows on the floor and allow the hips to open up even more.  This pose is called the Lizard pose.pomelo_20160503124153_save.jpg


4. Next is the Pigeon pose.  Place your knee on the floor and try and try to get the opposite thigh as close to the floor as you can.  Do this by squaring the hips.  The more you align the hips the better the stretch.


5.  And finally for the Agnistambasana or the Firelog pose.  I try and include this as much as I can in my classes.  In this pose the point to remember is that the knee and the ankle should be directly on top of each other for both legs.


Hold these poses for as long as you feel like.   If you have the time, even 2 minutes on each side would be great.  Since I’m heavily influenced by the Iyengar style I would recommend you find out how to use props to do poses which are a bit challenging for you.

Practice these daily and even more than once a day to manage your back aches.


Some Useful Hip Openers

July 12, 2015

I’ve noticed that sometimes when I sleep on a different mattress, I wake up with a stiff lower back.  Countless people have told me that they experience the same ‘stiffness’ if they sit for too long.  This ‘stiff’ lower back is a harbinger of back-related problems to come.  It’s better to nip this problem in the bud using a few simple yoga moves.  Else you may be looking at years of pain and medication.  So next time you experience a stiff lower back, practice the below moves.  Hold the postures on both sides, focusing on opening up the hips.  Make your movements intuitive.  So rather than forcing your body into what the pose looks like, try and focus more on the movement.


The Ashwasanchalasana

Place your right foot between the hands.  Keep your shoulders squared, which means you aren’t going to be leaning in on your right thigh.  The right thigh should be parallel to the floor.  Keep the left leg stretched out and the knee locked.  Extend the back of the left leg, so try and push the left heel as far back as you can. Try and push the groin region closer to the floor, opening up the hip joint.  Repeat on the other side.


The Runner’s Stretch

From your Ashwasanchalanasana, place your back knee on the floor.  Then straighten the front leg making sure you don’t re-adjust the leg.


Low Lunge

From the Runner’s stretch come back to the Ashwasanchalansana and place the back knee on the floor again.  Push your groin region closer to the floor.  Then place your hands on the front knee and straighten the torso.  So, you’re pushing into the knee with your hands giving a lift to your chest and at the same time pushing the groin region forward.  Do this on both sides.


Kapotasana (Pigeon Pose)

Once again come back to the Ashwasanchalanasana.  Then start to walk the front leg out and place the knee on the floor.  Keep the hips squared.  Open up the chest and push the shoulder’s back.


The Baddhakonasana (Seated Butterfly Pose)

Next, bring your feet together and push your knees as close to the floor as you can.  Keep your back straight and chest lifted.


The Happy Baby Pose

Bend your legs and grab your feet from the insides (yes, it makes a difference where you hold your feet from).  Now gently start to push your knees closer to the floor.  In fact, you can even swing from side to side touching first one knee then the other.  The idea is to allow your tail bone to decompress and relax.  This is a pose I would recommend on a hard floor or mat, rather than on a mattress.


The Supine Spinal Twist

Lie down flat on your back and grab your left knee with the right hand and gently pull it across your body to the right side.  Try and keep your shoulder blades flat on the floor, maximizing the twist.  Take 5 deep breaths and twist a little more every time you exhale.  Keep the other leg long.  Repeat on the other side as well.