According to the American Chiropractic Association, 31 million Americans suffer from lower back pain. It is one of the leading causes in disabilities. Many people who have experienced lower back pain can relate to how troublesome it is. It can leave you unable to walk, work, or perform basic day-to-day activities. Sometimes relief can only come in the form of prescription drugs, physical therapy, and pain management. The lower back in called the lumbar spine and what most people don’t know is that actually is not designed to move. It is designed to give you stability; so, the older you get, the more immobile it becomes. The hips also can play a role in back pain. The hips are the next main structure around the lower back; they also offer support and stability. If both the lower back and hips are tight, this can cause the lower back to be at risk for injury.
Place one foot at the front of your mat. Have your knee bent at 90 degrees and over the ankle. You should be able to see your knee. Place both hands on either side of the front foot and extend the opposite leg behind you. Press your finger tips into the mat and push your chest through your arms to straighten your spine. Allow your gaze to be about 6 inches in front of your mat. While in this position, you can slightly raise your hips up and down and side to side, feeling mobility in your hips. Hold for 1 minute, then switch sides.
Place one foot at the front of your mat. Have your knee bent at 90 degrees and over the ankle. You should be able to see your toes. Place both hands on either side of the front foot and extend the opposite leg behind you and place the knee on the ground. Bring your hand onto your front knee or up to the sky. Allow your hips to sink toward the ground while your belly is engaged toward your spine. You should feel a stretch in your back thigh, if you do not place a little further apart from your front leg. Hold for 1 minute, then switch sides.
Bring your left knee just behind your left wrist on the floor. Place your left shin on a diagonal and make certain that your left thigh is straight with the mat. Extend your right leg straight behind you and have your hips sink into the ground. Make sure your back leg is extended straight and your toes are untucked. With weight distributed equally between your hips, begin to walk your hands slightly forward on the mat. You can fold forward or stay upright, whichever is more comfortable. Hold for 1 minute, then switch sides.
Stack your shins on top of each other, making sure that ankles line up with knees. There may be a slight space between the top knee and the lower foot. Keeping both hips on the ground, hold for 1 minute and then switch legs.
This is also known as the butterfly pose. In a sitting position, bring the bottoms of the feet together. Hold the tops of the feet, soles still pressing together; extend your chest forward over your heels. Hold for 1 minute.