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Back Release for the Couch

Couch Time: Back Release

I'm big into running, but since I started, I've found that my lower back muscles have tightened and lost some of the flexibility they used to have. So I've been trying to do more back stretches. They not only feel amazing and prevent back pain, but when you open your heart and the front of your body, backbends also make you feel happy and energized.

Sitting, driving, running, and twisting can all lead to a tight back and chest. In Inyengar Yoga, we use various props to support different poses that open, stretch, and release the spine, chest, and torso in general. Why not turn an everyday object in your home into the ultimate yoga prop? Yep, that couch can be used for more than just lounging about! You can try this relaxing yet invigorating back release on your sofa.

How do you get into it?

  • Sit on a couch or comfy chair backwards. Try to scoot your butt as close as you can to the back. You can bring your knees so they are cross-legged, or you can rest your knees on the back of the chair or couch.
  • Now place your back on the part you usually sit on and let your head hang down. If it feels comfortable, you can lift your arms overhead and place them on the ground to support more of your weight and give you a deeper stretch. You can also place your head flat on the ground, as shown in the picture.
  • Stay here for as long as you want — five breaths or five minutes — and then slowly lift your torso. Turn your body around so you're sitting normally, and fold your chest over your thighs to release your back and give the blood that collected in your head a chance to slowly return back to the rest of your body (if you stand up too soon, you'll get a major headache).


Join The Conversation
starkiss23 starkiss23 9 years
LOL. I used to do that all the time when I was a kid.
suzanne suzanne 9 years
NOw this one we could do... :HEAVY: It was fun and did feel really great. Check us out at:
Spectra Spectra 9 years
When we were kids, my sister and I used to do this all the time. We actually used to sit like this and play Nintendo. It made Super Mario that much more interesting, lol.
courtney422 courtney422 9 years
This seems like a good idea! Yoga is the best way to strengthen and stretch your body!
stevedavison stevedavison 9 years
Great blog. I'd recommend checking out and the weight of evidence blog for other great posts. Those are two of my daily favorites…
aimeeb aimeeb 9 years
I've done this! Ha.
ElectroPopTart ElectroPopTart 9 years
OH, I love this. ....Yoga works wonders, try it!
GlowingMoon GlowingMoon 9 years
I love yoga poses that release the chest and spine, but personally, I wouldn't do poses like that on the coach. I do my posing in yoga classes.
Lovely_1 Lovely_1 9 years
Looks (and sounds) like it feels so good :)
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