If your back is aching, stretch it out with your favorite person!
With so many of people sitting all day at their desk-jobs these days, there’s a good chance that you or someone you know could seriously benefit from a little lower back TLC.
Fortunately, you don’t need to join a gym or go it alone – just grab a friend! Partner stretches are a great way to loosen up. These seven partner stretches will help you (and a buddy) ease painful tension in the lower back, hips, and hamstrings.
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Practice these stretches once or twice a day. All you need is a mat and a friend!
7 Feel-Good Partner Stretches for Lower Back Pain
Child’s Pose | 1 min
Start with this ultimate lower back soother with a gentle massage from your partner.
- Get in a tabletop position. Separate your knees out wide and bring your toes together. Then, sit your hips back on your heels and walk your hands up, resting your forehead on the mat.
- Have your partner stand over you with your arms between their feet. Then, they can lean forward to gently massage your lower back muscles, pressing side-to-side for about 30 seconds. Then, press down and hold for 30 seconds.
Straddle Fold | 30 sec
Use this partner stretch to open tight hips and hamstrings, releasing tension in the lower back.
- Sit facing your partner with both of your legs straddled out wide. Bring the soles of your feet to touch your partners and hold hands.
- One partner will slowly lean back, pulling the other partner forward into a wide-legged fold. Make sure that the person folding forward keeps at least a small bend in the knees to prevent lower back strain.
- Hold for 30 seconds, then come back up to center.
Butterfly | 30 sec
Loosen up your tight hips and lower back with assistance from your partner.
- Sit with the soles of your feet together and your knees out wide in a butterfly position. Your partner will stand behind you.
- Walk your hands out in front of you and slowly fold forward.
- Then, have your partner bend down, place their hands on your inner thighs and apply gentle pressure to deepen the stretch. Hold for 30 seconds.
Supine Hamstrings Stretch | 30 sec per side
This stretch relieves tightness in the hamstrings which can cause pain in the lower back.
- Lie on your back with your legs straight down the mat. Have your partner kneel down by your feet.
- Your partner will slowly lift your right leg straight up towards the sky until you feel a stretch through the hamstrings. Keep a small bend in your knee and be sure your hips stay on the ground. Hold for 30 seconds, then switch sides.
Supine Figure 4 | 30 sec per side
Tightness in the outer hips can cause pain throughout the lower back. Using a partner helps make this stretch more effective.
- Lie on your back while your partner stands by your feet.
- Bend your knees and cross your right ankle over your left thigh. Pick up your left foot and place it on your partner’s belly. They will place their left hand on your right thigh, and their right hand on the outside of your left thigh.
- Then, they will lean forward to gently press your left leg in towards your body. At the same time, guide your right knee open to increase the stretch in your outer hip. Hold for 30 seconds, then switch sides.
Prone Quad Stretch | 30 sec per side
This stretch opens up the quads and hip flexors, which can tug on your lower spine when tight.
- Lie facedown on your mat and have your partner kneel down by your legs.
- Your partner will pick up your right foot and bend the knee, bringing your heel towards your glute, until you feel a nice stretch along the front of your thigh. Make sure that there is no discomfort in the knee.
- To increase the stretch, have your partner slide their hand underneath your lower thigh, and lift up a little bit. You should feel the stretch all the way up through the front of your hip. Hold for 30 seconds, then switch sides.
Supine Twist | 30 sec per side
This twist releases tightness along the spine, lower back, and chest – and feels extra amazing with a partner.
- Lie face up on the mat with your legs long. Bring your right knee into your chest and interlace your hands around the shin.
- On an exhale, twist your right leg across your body and straighten your right arm out to the side to come into a twist.
- Have your partner stand next to your right side and place their left palm on your right shoulder and their right palm on your right hip.
- Breathe in deeply as you exhale have them apply gentle pressure to your shoulder and hip. Hold for 30 seconds, then switch sides.
(Your Next Workout: 10 Yoga Poses to Release Lower Back and Hip Pain)