Pain Relief with 3 Yoga Poses



If you work at a desk, you most likely experience neck pain.

This is due to the overstretching or rounding of the upper back while sitting at the desk and looking down at the computer. The short and tight muscles on the front of the chest (especially the pectoral muscles and upper abdominals) crunch and shorten. Together, this combo of stretched and a weakened back body with a shortened and tight front body pull the head forward of the shoulders, giving all of the work of keeping the head upright to the smaller group of muscles on the back of the neck. Eventually, these muscles start to cry out because they are not doing the work they were meant to do.

Try this combo every day for one week. Discover if it will reverse the pattern that has been created in your body. Can you heal and give your body relief?

Position 1: Low Cobra Pose


Lay down on your belly. Ground the toenails into the floor; keep the outer ankles hugging in and the pinky toes heavy, helping the inner thighs rotate upwards toward the sky. Bring your awareness to your pelvis. Create a neutral shape by scooping the lower belly away from the floor and rooting the pubic bone into the floor, similar to how you lengthen your low back in Tadasana. Find that same slight posterior tilt on the floor. Next, rest your forehead on the floor and bend your elbows bringing your wrists under the elbow joint or a little in front ofthe elbow joint. Go back to the toes and check that all your original points of connection (toenails, ankles, inner thighs, low belly, low back) are still connected and doing their jobs. Then, bring your awareness to your shoulders. First, try an opposite shrug. Rather than hugging the shoulders up by the ears, pull the shoulders as far away from the ears as you possibly can. Try to maintain this downward action while you simultaneously slide the shoulder blades toward one another (retraction) and down the spine. Next, lift your face away from the floor without arching the neck. Keep the neck nice and long. If this feels like enough work, stay here. If you want to add more, lift the hands barely away from the floor by way of the back muscles and elbow points drawing away from the ears. If you feel tension in your lower back, come out and find that scoop into the pelvis again. There is point in doing this posture with tension in the back. Hold for 30 seconds. Slowly build up to one minute. Try this position 3-5 times per day in combination with positions 2 and 3. 

Position 2: Unnamed


This is not necessarily a yoga pose, but it is a great way to stretch the pectoral muscles, which become short and tight. Lay down on your belly. Make a shape of a goal post with your arms by bringing the elbow and wrists at a 90 degree angle from your shoulders. Double check that when you come into the pose, the elbow of the stretched arm has not lowered. Gaze to the right and lift your left leg away from the floor. Gently begin to bring the left toe to the outside of the resting right knee as the pelvis turns to the left. You are looking for a stretch on the right pectoral muscle or the chest muscle. You may feel it all of the way up into the wrist as well. Only venture as deep as you can feel the stretch. Try to remain relaxed while you seek out this sensation.

Position 3: Unnamed on Other Side


To switch to the other side, bring the left leg back down into the floor and switch your gaze to the other size. The gaze will be away from the chest muscles that you are stretching, not towards it. Breathe...

Take Child's Pose and Relax!