Upper Back pain is one common complaint among people who sit in front of computers for long hours. It is usually caused due to poor posture, a strain or a sprain or an injury.

The below set of stretches will help strengthen the spine, restore flexibility to the joints and the muscles of the upper back. However, it is always recommended to consult with your physician before starting on these, to check the suitability of these stretches for you. Also, please remember to respect your body at all times. Do not over exert and stop when you feel pain.

Cat/Cow Pose

  • Start on your hands and knees with your wrists directly under your shoulders, and your knees directly under your hips. Point your fingertips to the top of your mat. Place your shins and knees hip-width apart. Center your head in a neutral position and soften your gaze downward.
  • Begin by moving into Cow Pose: Inhale as you drop your belly towards the mat. Lift your chin and chest, and gaze up toward the ceiling.
  • Broaden across your shoulder blades and draw your shoulders away from your ears.
  • Next, move into Cat Pose: As you exhale, draw your belly to your spine and round your back toward the ceiling. The pose should look like a cat stretching its back.
  • Release the crown of your head toward the floor, but don’t force your chin to your chest.
  • Inhale, coming back into Cow Pose, and then exhale as you return to Cat Pose.
  • Repeat 5-20 times, and then rest by sitting back on your heels with your torso upright

Seated Twist

  • Sit sideways on the chair with the right side of your body against the chair back. Sit erect and exhale.
  • Hold the outer sides of the chair back. Widen your elbows.
  • Push the right side of the chair back away from your body, exerting pressure, while pulling the left side toward you.
  • Exhale as you rotate, but do not hold your breath.
  • Look over your right shoulder. Hold the pose for 20 – 30 seconds.
  • Repeat the pose on the other side

Arm Reach

  • Get on your hands and knees, with your neck parallel to the floor.
  • Lift one hand and stretch the arm out in front of you, parallel to the floor, ensuring you do not raise your head.
  • Hold for 5 seconds, then return your hand to the floor.
  • Do 5 to 10 reps, then switch to your other arm and repeat

Thoracic Extension

  • While sitting on a chair, clasp your hands behind your head and gently arch backward until you are looking up at the ceiling.
  • Repeat 10 times.

Arm Slides

  • Stand against a wall, with your elbows and wrists pressed back against the wall. Slowly slide your arms up as high as you can, keeping your elbows and wrists against the wall, then return to your original position. Repeat 10 times.


  • Place your palms down on your shoulders. Keep your hands in place and bring your elbows together until you feel a stretch in your upper back. Hold for 5 seconds, then return to the starting position. Repeat 10 times.

Shoulder Roll

  • Roll your shoulders forward, slowly making large circles. Reduce to smaller circles, then reverse direction. Repeat 10 times.


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