If you’re looking for ways to reduce back pain, consider bridge pose. This pose both loosens tight abdominal muscles and helps to strengthen muscles in the back and legs.

Start by lying on your back on a firm yet comfortable surface, such as a yoga mat. Bend your knees so your feet are flat on the floor. Try to bring your feet as close to your buttocks as you can.

Taking care NOT to turn your neck side to side, look straight up at the ceiling and slowly place more weight in your feet until you can start to lift your buttocks off the ground. Walk your feet in so that your ankles are directly under your knees, with your toes facing straight ahead and your thighs parallel to each other.

If you’re comfortable here, you can either stay here or incorporate your arms into the pose. To add your arms, carefully bring your hands together under your body, clasping the fingers. Roll your shoulders under so you’re resting more on the back of your neck instead of your upper back. Try to keep your chin parallel to the ceiling and your chest lifted.

Stay in this pose, breathing deeply for 15-30 seconds.

To come out of bridge pose, start by relaxing your shoulders back to the ground, releasing your hands to your sides. Slowly lower your hips to the ground and take the weight out of your feet.

For a counterpose, hug your knees to your chest and rock gently back and forth.

Bridge Pose