Positions and Movements Providing Relief:

These positions and movements structurally lengthen and decompress the spine. They will assist your body in undoing some of the compressive, shortening, and rounding effects that gravity has in your posture.

Back Lying Extension Rest Position:

Stretch out on your back with your legs resting out or up on a few pillows or on top of an ottoman, chair seat, couch; try placing a folded sheet under your low, middle, or upper back to support your normal arch and to assist in lengthening the spine; by placing your arms up and out to the sides, you‘ll provide a nice decompression to your spine and chest wall. If your arms are tight, start with them supported comfortably on pillows.

Lying on Stomach:

Place a flat pillow under your upper chest to allow your head /neck to relax forward on your hands, or to be turned sideways without straining. If you feel that lying on your stomach causes an uncomfortable amount of pressure to your lower back, place a pillow under your lower abdomen this may be more comfortable at first, especially if you are not used to lying on your stomach.

Stomach Lying On Elbows:

Gently shift your shoulders from side to side in this position; allow your low back to relax and sag. If this position is uncomfortable for your shoulders, place a few pillows under your chest to relieve some of the pressure. Relax in this position as long as it is comfortable. If you find this helpful, get into the habit of using this position in the evening as a short term alternative to sitting.

Press-Ups And Back Bending:

This move should be your first line of defense when you stand up after a long duration of sitting! This is especially important if you have difficulty and/or pain when attempting to stand up after sitting a while. Place your hands on your low back and the buttocks. Slowly, gently lean back with your legs straight; don’t tilt your head back.


When you can’t or don’t want to get up, recline and stretch out in your seat.


Often walking is the best way to relieve low back and/ or leg pain that comes on after sitting too long or bending too much. 

Desk-Top Resting:

This method is especially good if symptoms of low back pain have appeared from sitting too long at a table or desk and you can’t or don’t want to take the time to get up. Start out by pushing your chair back from the desk, then gently arch your lower back and stick your buttocks out. If possible, spread your legs wide apart with your knees bent. Rest your arms and head on the desk, allowing the spine to elongate forward, and relax for about a minute.

Side Lying With Towel Roll:

Lie on your side with the painful side up. Place a small, rolled up towel under your side in the hollow between your pelvis and ribs. Place your top arm up and over your head. You should feel as though you are lengthening the top side between your chest and pelvis.