Becoming Supple du Dos | 16 Effective Yoga Postures

Looking for upper back stretches? Are you looking for flexible back postures for beginners? Do you wonder how to soften your back on a daily basis? Becoming flexible in the back is for some of us a real challenge. Because? We spend a lot of time sitting in front of our computer, shoulders contracted, hunched over in our chair. Our spine, therefore, takes a bad position, we feel pain in the trapezius, we round the back, in short, we bend forward and we slouch. To remedy this and develop your back flexibility, doing yoga sessions is a very good remedy. Through various yoga postures and through deep and controlled breathing, I will show you how to remedy your round back and how to become flexible in the back. Take the time to warm up before performing the postures, and read the mistakes to avoid to protect your back during your practices.

1. The camel pose: Ustrasana

The camel pose is a very good posture to help you become flexible in the back and fight against stiff back . However, be aware that this posture is of an advanced level. It is therefore normal that you cannot reach the final posture right away. Do it step by step. During this posture, your intention should be: “To grow taller, open my chest, fill my body with air and fully stretch the front of my body.”.

The benefits of the camel posture : It strengthens , tones and stretches the back as well as the spine and throat . It also helps open the rib cage , improve breathing, and relax the shoulders . It is perfect for people with a hunched back and slack shoulders. Ustrasana also strengthens the abdominals, gluteal muscles and back muscles . This asana (posture) is stimulating, energizing and helps to gain self-confidence.

Contraindications :

  • hernia problems;
  • signs of arthritis or osteoarthritis;
  • migraine headaches;
  • pain in the lower back , neck or shoulders .

To facilitate your practice, you can :

  • Place a towel under the knees.
  • Use yoga bricks: the blocks will allow you to slowly descend into the posture and not force your back suddenly. Becoming flexible of the back is done with patience and delicacy …
  • Perform the posture with your back to a wall to come and rest your head against during the descent: this will protect the cervical and neck in case of tension.
  • Stand on your tiptoes to make it easier to achieve camel pose.
  • Practice the half-camel pose, keeping the hands behind the lower back.

To perform the camel pose :

  1. Get down on your knees, keeping a pelvic width spacing.
  2. Put your hands on your hips and squeeze your elbows.
  3. Lightly push the pelvis forward.
  4. Inhale and lower the bust backwards, keeping the sternum upwards and the hips above the knees. 
  5. Arch the spine, keeping the thighs perpendicular to the floor.
  6. The head follows the extension of the body or stays in the direction of the chest in case of pain in the neck.
  7. Several options for the position of the hands: place the hands flat on the soles of the feet, catch the heels with the palms of the hands, put the hands on the blocks or keep the hands on the hips to start.
  8. Keep the tummy toned and grow taller.

To get out of the posture, bring your chin to your chest, hands on your hips, and straighten up. After all the yoga postures that work on the flexibility of the back , it is good to get into the child’s posture for a few breaths. At this point, consider inflating your stomach to create space in your back. It’s a good way to relax him.

To avoid :

  • contracting the shoulders; 
  • take out the stomach;
  • relax and slouch on the heels;
  • compress the back;
  • rushing into the posture; 
  • practice without warming up;
  • perform the posture in case of insomnia.
Camel Posture Ustrasana to become flexible of the back

2. The dog head up posture: Urdhva Mukha Svanasana

The head-up dog pose and the cobra pose (see pose 16) are two similar asanas that help to become flexible in the back . These two postures are similar, but they are not the same. 

In the head-up dog posture , the back is bent thanks to the support of the hands on the ground. The hands and toes are the only parts of the body in contact with the ground. The legs are stretched, toned and the buttocks are contracted. The hands push the ground back, the shoulders are low and the shoulder blades are tightened.

The benefits of the head-up dog posture :

  • strengthening of the back muscles ;
  • work on the opening of the psoas and hips;
  • stretching of the spine;
  • opening of the chest;
  • relief of lower back pain, etc.
Head Up Dog Posture Urdhva Mukha Svanasana

3. The downward dog pose: Adho Mukha Svanasana

Once again, I dedicated an article to the realization of this posture which is very frequently found in the flows (sequences) of yoga. It is also known as V upside down. This transitional posture has many benefits, because it works the whole body . Even if you are not flexible enough to straighten your legs, you will feel a stretch in the back of the thighs. This pose allows for effective back stretches . Indeed, the stretching is integral: the entire backbone is involved.

The virtues of the dog upside down :

  • relaxation of the backbone;
  • improvement of natural posture;
  • release of muscle tension.
Downward facing dog posture Adho Muska Svanasana Sanskrit:
4. The bow posture: Dhanurasana to become flexible of the back

The arch posture is a classic asana also called “bow on the ground” or “bow on the stomach”. To see real results in this position, it must be practiced regularly. This backward bending (or arching) movement helps counterbalance the attitude that we often adopt at work, namely to hunch over . When you perform this posture, you must seek stability and calm. Don’t try to perform as well as possible. Becoming flexible in the back takes patience and persistence.

The benefits of the bow pose are manifold. This asana is complete and stretches the entire back. It restores suppleness to the back and prevents the back from becoming rigid with age. It helps once again to recover by the work of the opening of the heart. The rib cage regains fullness. It helps to stretch deeply, relax the back and lengthen the entire front of the body (ankles, quads, stomach, chest,

To facilitate your practice, you can :

  • Opt for the realization of the high arch (see posture 5).

To perform the bow pose :

  1. Lie on your stomach, legs spaced the width of your pelvis, arms alongside your body and your head resting on your forehead or chin.
  2. Bend the legs to bring the feet closer to the buttocks and catch the ankles. Take several breaths in this posture.
  3. When exhaling, lift your heels to the sky and back. The knees and thighs lift off the ground.
  4. At the same time, the bust and head automatically lift and move backwards.
  5. Once the posture is held in the air, glue the legs and knees if possible.
  6. Go back down when exhaling.

To avoid :

  • raise the shoulders;
  • glue the pelvis and ribs to the ground;
  • pull on the arms (they are stretched out but passive).
Dhanurasana arch posture for back flexibility

5. The elevation arch posture: Maha Utthita Dhanurasana

You will understand, the posture of the arch in elevation (or high arch) is a variant of the posture of the arch. The benefits and contraindications for this posture are therefore similar to those seen previously. However, this works a little more fully to open the rib cag

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