Gentle Stretch Routine for Low Back Pain

Hip 90 90 Pigeon Stretch

These low back pain stretches or low back tension stretches are aimed to target a combination of: reduced mobility in vertebral joints, and the muscles that connect to the ‘lumbar vertebrae’ also known as the low back. The routine also includes hip stretches which is a primary area to stretch when low back pain is present.

The truth is, low back pain is quite easily managed or cured with a simple stretch and mobility routine. That being said, the longer it is left untreated, the more our body molds to adapt to the pain, or the posture, hence creating a hardening of the fascia. In that case, the stretches must be done daily to experience any improvement. As well, core exercises must be incorporated.

The first exercise in the routine is the cat-cow yoga exercise. This exercise is beneficial for mobilizing each vertebrae. It is best to intensify this movement as long as it is pain free. It is also helpful to lubricate the joints of each vertebrae, and loosen the muscles and fascia that are attached to them.

The other 3 exercises are stretches to help low back pain whereby stretching the muscles and fascia that are causing your low back to tighten up.

How to make this work best for me?

Depending on the severity of your low back pain, here is a guideline on what will work best

I have intense low back pain

Especially if you are new to incorporating stretches, it is best to go through each stretch slowly and use your breath. What I mean by that is upon your exhale, focus on letting go of more tension. Continuously stay mindful while you are stretching and tune in to which areas your body seems to be holding on to. Then as you exhale, focus on sinking in to the stretch a little more.

Mild or Occasional Low Back Tightness

If you are new to incorporating stretches, you can go through the ones in the low back pain stretches video and see how they feel. The 3rd stretch is the most intensive of the 4. If you need something a little more intense, check out this Hip Opening Flow Routine which is great for stretching out the hips. It’s also my favourite, as it incorporates upper body rotation, which is often a missing link in improving low back pain

I’d like to stretch before exercise

Since you want your muscles and joints to be lubricated before you exercise, or go for a walk, I suggested flowing through the exercises similar to the video. Go at your own pace. It will be best to not hold the stretches for 2 minutes. Use your breath here as well, to further increase circulation and move the energy through your body to prepare for exercise.

Do I have to do them all?

Absolutely not. The BEST way to stretch is to find the low back stretch that provides the most relief to you. You can do this stretch often. But I do recommend after a few weeks, you add another stretch to ensure you are hitting other muscles.


I need something more intense

Once you have gone through this set of exercises, we have another stretch flow routine here for further improving hip mobility. It is a little more intense but keep practising as it’s very beneficial to lubricate the hip joints. Remember your stretches don’t have to look exactly like the video. It is best to find the most comfortable position for your body.

If this doesn’t work for me

If you’ve tried these stretches and the core exercises, it will either be beneficial to look more up the fascial line – to incorporate stretches to help mobilize the mid-back . A last option is to look at finding a stretch therapist who can help you open up the entire front line fascia of the body

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Active Kinetix: Personal Training, Corrective Exercise, Active Rehab, Fascial Stretch Therapy. Kinesiologists, Personal Trainers, Fascial Stretch Therapists Burnaby, Vancouver Fitness