8 Yoga Poses for Neck and Upper Back Pain and Discomfort

Yoga For Upper back pain

Back Pain / January 5, 2021

This is the crème de la crème of all yoga poses for the neck, upper back, and shoulders. This pose has done the most for me in getting rid of acute discomfort in my neck and upper back.

Start by lying on your stomach on the floor. Slowly raise your head, shoulders, and chest off of the floor, using the muscles in your upper back to do so. You will be resting on your lower ribs, stomach, and pelvis, keeping the tops of your feet flat on the floor. Next, reach our hands back, parallel to the floor so that your fingertips almost touch each other. Gaze forwards or slightly up. Hold the position for 30 seconds to 1 minute.

Although binding your hand (like in the picture) is not required, it is give you a deeper stretch. Additionally, you can raise your legs too to stretch out your lower body. Here is a picture of the pose without hands being binded but with legs raised.

This is an excellent pose for the torso and neck and does a great job of opening the shoulders and chest.

Instruction: Start in Warrior II Pose (front leg bent close to 90 degrees and back leg straight). Bring the rear hand down to the back leg with the palm facing down. Turn the front palm facing upwards towards the sky. On an inhale, extend the front arm up towards the sky with the palm facing towards the back of the room. Keep your hips open and reach your heart upwards (towards the sky). Keep the back of your neck long and look up towards your front hand. Keep this pose for at least 30 seconds and return to Warrior II.

Lay supine on the floor. Keep your shoulders firmly placed on the floor. Next, bring knees up and your feet backwards, placing them flat on the floor. Next, left your buttocks off of the floor, tightening the thigh muscles as a bridge is formed. Remember to keep your shoulders and head firmly pressed towards the floor. Hold the position for 30 seconds to one minute.

Position 1

Position 2

This is a combination of two yoga poses; the cat pose and the cow pose. Start on your hands and knees in a “tabletop” position with your back as flat as possible. Then move into position 1 (cow pose) by pushing your belly and hips down to the earth with your head looking forward or slightly upward. Hold that for 30 seconds to 1 minute. Then, keeping your knees and shoulders in line, move into position 2 (cat pose). To do this, push the back upwards, rounding the back as much as you can. Tilt the head down, so the chin touches the chest. Hold for 30 seconds to 1 minute and return to the flattened back position. It doesn’t really matter which pose you do first, the cat or the cow. All it matters is that you do both.

Start by lying on your stomach on the floor. The legs and the tops of the feet should be flat on the floor. Place your hands on the floor, even with your shoulders, and begin to straighten them as you bring the chest up, making sure that the feet, legs, and especially thighs remain flat on the floor. Once the arms are completely straightened, bring the head back slightly, keeping shoulders and arms in line. Hold this pose for 15 to 30 seconds.

Start in a squatting position with your feet several inches apart. Bend slightly so that you can place your hands on the floor. Next, bring your thighs up next to your torso. Hug your thighs to your body as tight as you can. Place your knees as far forwards as you can, moving them towards your armpits. Balance your body as you slowly lift your feet from the floor. Hold your body up, balancing only on your hands. Hold this position for 20 seconds to 1 minute.

Start by lying on the floor on your stomach. Press your elbows and forearms into the floor by your side and lift your shoulders so that they are directly above your forearms. Tighten the muscles in your shoulder blades. Keep your feet out straight behind you, toes on the floor, body lifted only on forearms and toes. Hold this pose for 30 seconds to 1 minute.

Start with your feet 3 ½ to 4 feet apart. Raise your arms so that they are parallel to the floor with palms down. Actively stretch your arms out, stretching shoulder blades. Keeping your feet in line with each other, reach your right hand to the left foot while the left hand reaches towards the ceiling. Your head leans towards the floor. Hold the pose for 30 seconds to 1 minute then reverse the hands and start again.


Through yoga, you should find that you strengthen muscles and gain focus. You will begin to feel your muscles working together. As you strengthen and use the muscle groups properly, you should notice less pain. As always, remember to maintain good posture and listen to your body at all times. If something is painful, don’t do it. Yoga should never be painful.

Source: examinedexistence.com