Hey, everyone. Welcome to Yoga with Adriene. I am Adriene. Today, we have an awesome sequence for the upper back. I rarely meet anyone that doesn’t complain about upper back achiness or stiffness, shoulder pain, craving neck relief. So this is a sequence that you can incorporate to your daily routine, your daily practice. You can return to it five days a week, seven days a week. So be sure to favorite the tutorial so you can return to it easily, because I think this is something that everyone can benefit from. So let’s get to it,.
Hop on the mat, and let’s learn this upper back sequence. Okay. So to begin, we’re going to start in a nice crosslegged position, sukhasana, or the pose of ease here, just pressing into the sit bones and slowly lengthening up through the spine. I’ll bring the palms to the knees here, and jumping right in, I’m going to inhale, loop my shoulders, draw my shoulder blades in together and back, as I lift my heart. Now, I don’t have to crunch the neck here. Ouch. Just going to keep it nice.
And open, but I am actively drawing my shoulder blades in and together and down, shoulders away from the ears. Take a deep breath in here, long belly, tops of the thighs draw down. Then on an exhale, I’m going to slowly draw my chin to my chest, draw my naval back, allow my shoulders to round forward, kind of get a little booty massage here as I roll through the buttock and allow the weight of my head to drop over. Now, I’m going to hang here for a couple breaths, catching the weight of my.
Yoga For Upper Back Pain Yoga With Adriene
Palms to the knees here and really just breathing, feeling that upper back stretch, creating a little bit of space here with each inhale and each exhale. Then rolling back up, I’ll loop the shoulders, rolling through, pressing into sit bones, again lifting the heart, drawing the shoulder blades in together and down, and really creating space between the ears and the tops of the shoulders. Take a deep breath in. Smile. Relax your jaw. Then send it back down. I like to call this Mr. Burns’ posture here, but we’ll put a positive spin.
On it here. Breathe some space into that upper back. Then inhaling, back up to center, head over heart, heart over pelvis. Okay. Sitting up nice and tall, I’m going to send my fingertips forward like I’m swimming, crossing them over, swim around, and then I’m going to interlace my fingertips behind the back. Again, a good marker is to keep the head over the heart center, the sternum, the sternum over the pelvis. Just notice whether maybe you tend to sit back like this, which is normal, or maybe you’re overcompensating and.
Shifting the heart forward. Let’s try to stack is nice and tall. I’m going to interlace the fingertips, and then I have a couple options here. If I can… We’ll turn to the side here so you can see. I can bring the palms together. Check that out. If that’s a little too intense at the moment, I might keep the wrists nice and square, but I’m actively drawing the shoulders down, away from the ears, shoulder blades together, kind of wringing it out in the upper back here, getting rid of that achiness, kind.
Of massaging that area of the body. What will help with that is, of course, taking a nice, juicy, deep breath in and a nice, soft sigh out. Let’s do one more deep breath in. Notice my neck is getting a little involved here. It feels good. Slowly release and palms come back to the thighs. Okay. So now, I’m going to come to an extended child’s pose for a couple breaths. So I’m going to open the knees nice and wide. Big toes are going to kiss together here. You can pad these if you need to here. If this is.
Too much extension, hyperextension in the knees, you can put a little blanket here between the knees, a little cushion. Then I’m going to sit up nice and tall. Inhale. Reach the arms up towards the sky, and then exhale. Keep the spaciousness in the side body as I dive forward into this extended child’s pose. Fingertips are going to reach towards the front edge of the mat. Palms are going to spread wide. Notice I’m still looking forward here, drawing my shoulder blades in together and back, shoulders rotating externally away.
From the ears. Breathing here, and then slowly bowing forward, opening up the shoulders, melting the heart to the Earth. Forehead kisses the mat, and the arms don’t go limp here or lazy. I kind of stay active here, reaching fingertips towards the front edge, connecting hastabana SP, that handEarth connection. Shoulders are alive as I breathe into the upper back. Then breathe into the midback. Then send a nice deep breath to the lower back. Then slowly, when you feel satisfied, drawing a line with the nose, looking forward, and then.
Using the palms to walk it back up. Okay. So now, we’re going to come to all fours here, tabletop position. I’m going to walk my right palm in towards the centerline here and, on an inhale, send my left fingertips all the way up towards the sky. Now, I’m not going to collapse into this right shoulder here. No way. I’m going to press up and out of the right palm, keeping the spaciousness that I’ve built in this little practice all along, breathing into the upper back here. Maybe the arm goes all the way up. Maybe it only goes to here. Just.
Seeing where that space is today, taking a nice deep breath in, and then exhale coming back to center. Left palm replaces the right. Right fingertips reach up. We’ll just do this side really fast, inhaling. You can move at your own pace, drawing that shoulder away from the ear, breathing nice, long, deep breaths, and then exhale back to center. We’re going to do it one more time. This time, keep the palms a little bit wide. Instead of drawing the right palm into the center, I’m going to keep.
It right where it is as I inhale. Open the left palm up. Take a deep breath This time, I have the needle. I’m going to take my left fingertips under the bridge of the right arm and come to rest on the outer edge of my left shoulder. Left ear comes to the Earth, and I begin to breathe into the upper back here, particularly the left side. For more leverage, I can tent the right fingertips here, maybe bend that right elbow up to find a little bit more in that upper back. The toes are.
Going to want to come together. I really don’t mind that. But if you like, you can just keep a little integrity here by keeping the tops of the feet pressing into the Earth. For more leverage or for a little bit of a deeper stretch, you can also add extending the right leg, just kind of using the right toes here again to press a little bit deeper into the posture. But I say start here, and then work your way up to here. So being really mindful in the shoulders here.
Let’s come out of the posture. Take a deep breath in and exhale out, following your breath back to center and planting the left palm. Again, this time, we’re not walking into the center, but keeping it nice and open. As I inhale, right fingertips reach up towards the sky, and then exhale, diving through, right fingertips under the bridge of the left arm as I come to the outer edge of my shoulder here. Hello. Breathing here, each side will be a little bit different. I can use my left.
Fingertips here to tent the palms. Bring that left elbow up. Another option that I sometimes offer students is to come palmstogether here and just kind of gently extending those right fingertips. That feels nice. Another option to go a little deeper, again, is to extend the left leg. Curl those toes under, breathing into that upper body, that upper back. Then following your breath to come out of the posture, moving nice and slow and mindfully here, and back to all fours. Okay. So now, we’re going to come onto the belly for a little cobra.
Sequence, gently coming onto the belly, drawing the palms underneath the shoulders here, and then keeping the feet just nice and hipwidth apart here, pressing into the pelvic bone, looping the shoulders. The elbows are coming in nice and close to the side body. Go ahead and rest your forehead on the mat. Then we’re going to move nice and slow here, inhaling and exhaling, pressing into the pelvic bone, pressing in your foundation, drawing the shoulder blades in together and down, as we slowly look up. Not a big move here at first, just a nice.
Gentle thing, and then exhale back down. Forehead kisses the mat, moving with the breath. Now, whether you rise up on the exhale or the inhale is totally your choice. I say for a sequence like this that’s therapeutic and about getting into those dark nooks and crannies, it’s just about following your breath. You might start to find a little more space. We’re moving in a nice speed, nice and mindful. Notice lots of space between the ears and shoulders. Then if you want, from here, you can build this into upwardfacing dog.
We’re not going to do that today. But if you already have a practice and you’re ready, you can begin to take this into a nice upwardfacing dog. When you feel satisfied, you can send it to a downwardfacing dog or just a nice little counter pose here, as we come into extended child’s pose, swimming the fingertips forward, up and back, and then resting the forehead. Shoulders melting forward as we breathe into the back and rest. Okie doke. So that was a yummy sequence for the upper back. This actually.