3 Stretches for When Your Upper Back is Killing You

How to Eliminate Pain if You Sit or Work On A Computer

Have you ever been sitting at your desk for what feels like 1,000 hours, and then when you decide it’s finally time to get some water or go to the bathroom, you stand up and get a grabbing pain in your upper back?

You are not falling apart… our bodies just aren’t meant to sit all day! Common culprits for adding to this type of back pain are nursing/feeding babies, studying for hours on end, and working at a desk.

Here are 3 stretches to try when your back is killing you:

1. Foam Roller Stretch

Sit on the floor and slowly lower over your roller, keeping the roller at your upper back. Play around with the roller placement to see where it feels best for you. Support your head with your hands and take 5 deep breaths here. For some people this feels like WAY too much. If so, I’d recommend skipping this one and instead work on the other two stretches to get more open. (If you don’t have a foam roller, this can also be done with a pool noodle or rolled up bath mat!)


2. Cat-Cow

Start in a tabletop position with knees under your hips and wrists under your shoulders. Look forward as you drop your tummy towards the ground, and let your shoulder blades come together as your chest shines forward. Then round your whole spine in – lifting your back towards the ceiling as you look in towards your belly button. Repeat for 10 rounds.

To pair this with the breath: Inhale as you look forward and drop your tummy, exhale as you round into cat pose (picture an angry cat arching its back).

3. Wall Stretch

Find a wall, any wall… bend forward and place your hands just above hip height. Sink your chest towards the ground to feel the stretch in your upper back. You may also feel a stretch in your hamstrings and calves. You can bend your knees if the back of the legs are getting too much of a stretch here.

All of these should feel like a comfortable stretch. If that upper back pain doesn’t resolve or if you want some extra help figuring out how to get back to movement without pain, come see us at Breathe.!