Do you ever get knots in your upper back? Those are the worst!

There’s nothing more annoying than trying to go to sleep or get some work done with that pesky pain between your shoulder blades.

In a perfect world, we’d each have our own personal massage therapist on-call to work out the kinks – but let’s be real, most of us don’t have that luxury. 

Luckily, there are 5 effective yoga poses you can do to help get rid of that tension between your shoulder blades and get some relief!

5 Best Yoga Poses for Upper Back Knots

Thread the Needle

Thread the Needle is a pose that opens the back of the shoulders and stretches the spine with a gentle twist. It also helps release tension in the side of the neck. Give it a try! 

If your kneecaps hurt in this pose, place a towel or blanket under them. 

For a deeper stretch, bring the top arm around your back for a bind. 

Rabbit Pose

Rabbit pose is an awesome upper back stretch. It elongates the spine and creates space between the shoulder blades. 

Start in a child’s pose, reach for your heels and roll to the crown of your head as you arch your back. The more you pull against your heels, the deeper the stretch will feel. 

Bow Tie Pose

Bow Tie Pose can be an intense shape for some people – but have patience! It helps to have a block, pillow, or rolled-up towel to rest your head on. Start by laying on your belly, stacking the forearms parallel, one in front of the other. Then start to walk your hands to opposite sides of the mat so that your elbows cross, and eventually scoot beyond each other. Turn your palms face-up…and don’t forget to breathe!

Pro tip: stay in this stretch for at least two minutes to get the most benefit. 

Cat Pose

Cat is a classic yoga pose. Simply start from all fours, tuck your tailbone under and drop your head as you arch your back to the sky. You might enjoy practicing this in combination with cow pose, by dropping your belly, squeezing your shoulder blades together, and looking upwards. You can arch your back up into those spots that feel extra tight. 

Eagle Arms

The trick to Eagle Arms is to lift your elbows up and draw your hands away from your face. Start by crossing your arms just above your elbows, then wind them around each other as far as you can. If you can get your hands to touch, that’s great! Even if they don’t, you can still get a wonderful stretch in this pose. Pay attention to the space it creates between your shoulder blades and send your breath into your upper back, like you’re inflating a balloon. Try both sides!

Upper back knots happen for a number of reasons, usually due to poor posture, strain, overuse, or just the tension that results from feeling stressed and tense. Give these poses a try and incorporate them into your routine to keep the back knots at bay! 

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