Benefits of a Daily Yoga Practice

While learning to practice yoga at home is challenging especially with all the other tasks and duties vying for our attention, regular practice does offer the best long term benefits. There was a study done in 2012 of over 1000 yoga students demonstrating that the frequency of home practice is what favorably predicted better health measures such as levels of mindfulness, subjective well-being, BMI, improved eating habits, sleep, and fatigue. 

In this blog I am offering you four simple yoga poses you could do every day to wake up and condition both your connective tissues and muscles to reduce your incidence of back pain.

Life happens. And the lower back tends to take the brunt of overwork and minimal attention until back pain gets loud enough to cause us to slow down.

It is possible to keep your back pain-free with a few yoga moves. In a short 15-minute practice you can help your back perform its best throughout your day. While this is not an extensive list of poses for total lower back strength and balance, these basics repeated often will serve you well.

If you are interested in reading a variety of suggestions for setting up a home practice space, see How to Create the Ideal Space to Practice Yoga at Home: Experts Tips


Four Daily Yoga Poses to Reduce Lower Back Pain

  1. Alternate Knee to Chest with Resistance (Apanasana Variation)

This is a variation of the classical pose to help you make contact with the deep abdominal muscle known as the transverse abdominus. For many students this is the most challenging muscle to connect with and tone for low back stability. Not only does the stretch warm-up the hip joints, when done with resistance and sound it is an effective aid to help you access and tone that muscle. Make this sound, “psssst”, on the exhale to exaggerate the dropping of the bottom of the belly toward the floor, i.e.; creating contraction of the transverse abdominis.

Action Steps:

  • Make your pelvic clock balanced on the floor, i.e., discover you can balance on your middle sacrum.
  • On an exhale, make the sound “psssst” and drop the lower belly toward the floor in a way that allows the sacrum to be stable in its position.
  • Press the bent knee away from your chest until your arms are straight. Maintain mild resistance to keep the bent knee and sacrum steady as you swing the straight leg up and down.


  1. Belly Turning Pose (Jathara Parivatanasana)

While twisting poses are often contra-indicated for lower back problems, this supine twist will help relieve tension in the spine safely when the abdominal muscles are fully engaged. Therefore keep your knees close to your chest and begin by taking the knees halfway to the right, or less. This pose helps release tension through all the small muscles and joints of the spine.Belly Turning Pose Yoga

Action Steps:

  • Turn your belly and lower ribs opposite to the knees. Small movements to each side can work as well as taking the knees closer to the floor.
  • Actively use your arms to keep both your shoulders on the floor and counterbalance the weight of the legs.

Tip: Begin slowly by turning your head in the same direction as the knees for three rounds to soften your neck. Then repeat three rounds turning your head opposite to your knees. Caution: please do not take your knees all the way to the floor.


3.Traction Twist (Duryodhanasana)

Extend, lengthen, and release your hip flexors, namely the Psoas and Quadracep muscles. When we open the front line of the body we can stand more upright, which reduces low back stress. This is an excellent pose to use for lower back First Aid any time of day.

Action Steps:

  • Get in the position as shown in the photo.
  • Curl your tail toward your pubic bone to narrow the pelvic floor.
  • Scoop the bottom of your belly in and up.
  • Extend the top knee away from the front hip, or into the block.
  • Draw your bottom right ribs back toward the floor. The hip will stay somewhat elevated.

Caution: if you have any pain in your inner knee, place a block under the knee for support. Tip: Press the knee on the block as you curl your tail to release tightness in the hip and ease the knee discomfort.

  1. Extended West Stretch at the Wall. (Parsvottanasana) 
The common actions of bending, lifting and twisting all have a tendency to compress and shorten the spine. This efficient pose offers three benefits; a stretch for the hamstring and Latissimus Dorsi muscles, decompression for the front of the spine and disc‘s, and tone for the posterior spinal muscles.Yoga pose Parsvottanasana

Action Steps:

  • Place your toes up on the wall at a 45° angle.
  • Take a giant step back with the opposite leg. Keep your heels on opposite sides of the center line, avoid crossing the midline when you place your back foot.
  • Face your hips toward the wall and walk your hands up until your spine is fully extended.
  • Wrap your outer arm toward the wall and contain your bottom front ribs.
  • Press your top thighs and sits bones back away from the wall.
Caution: be sure to extend your spine fully. Reach back with one hand and feel to be sure all of your lumbar spine create a valley. If you find mountains poking up, take your hands higher up the wall, and stretch it sits bones further back. 
May your life be blessed with Yoga.
Lillah Schwartz, Seasoned Instructor, Author – Healing Our Backs with Yoga, book, Teacher Training Mentor, C-IAYT certified yoga therapist.
Follow Lillah – weekly videos on YouTube Channel  — Join her private Facebook Group: Yoga Solutions for Healthy Hips and Back Pain Relief.
Available Now – FREE 4-Part Video Series click the link to get access, First Aid Yoga Poses for Back Pain Relief

Pin It on Pinterest