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7 Best Exercises for Mid Back Pain


Our human back is divided into a few parts; we will not go technical with heavy medical words. For convenience, we divide it into the upper, mid, and lower back. Before we learn more about mid-back pain, let us understand how back pain significantly lower back pain is becoming a global health concern. 

The worldwide statistics show that approximately 619 million individuals worldwide are affected by low back pain (LBP). Well, there isn’t much data available about individuals suffering from mid-back pain, but one does get an idea of how pain in the back affects the majority of the population.

Understanding Mid Back Pain

Mid-back pain refers to discomfort or pain in the area between the bottom of the ribcage and the base of the neck, known as the thoracic spine. 

Prime reasons for mid-back pain are: 

  • Poor posture (the most common and apparent reason)
  • Muscle strain or injury with overexertion, heavy lifting, or sudden movements. 
  • Bulged or herniated discs put pressure on nearby nerves and cause pain.
  • Degeneration of the joints in the spine
  • Fractures in the vertebrae

Who can suffer from mid-back pain?

Anyone can suffer from mid-back pain, but the chances may increase if any of these conditions pre-exist: 

  • Poor posture habits
  • Smoking
  • Sedentary lifestyle
  • Obesity
  • Aging

How Does One Feel With Mid-Back Pain? How do you get relief from mid-back pain with exercises?

Pain and discomfort vary by individual. Some of the most common symptoms associated with mid-back pain are:

  • Dull, achy pain 
  • Stiffness or tightness
  • The pain worsens with movements like bending, twisting, or reaching.
  • Discomfort or tenderness in mid back
  • Radiating pain to the shoulders, neck, or lower back.
  • Activities like sitting or standing for long periods, lifting objects, etc, become challenging.

Top 7 Exercises For Mid-back Pain/Mid-back Stretches

These are the tried and tested back stretches and exercises for mid-back pain. Here is the step-by-step guide to doing these exercises for mid-back pain for effective relief: 

Cobra Pose:

  • Lie on your stomach with your palms aligned to your shoulders, elbows close to your body, and legs extended.
  • Inhale deeply. Now lift your chest off the floor (gently) with your arms straightened. Keep your hips and pelvis stuck to the ground. 
  • Hold it for 15-30 seconds, breathing deeply.
  • Now exhale and bring your chest back to the floor.
  • Try to repeat this motion for 5-10 times. 


  • First, lay on your back with your knees bent. Make sure your feet are hip-width apart. 
  • Now, put pressure on your feet, lift your hips upwards, and inhale. Try creating a straight line from your shoulders to your knees.
  • In this position, squeeze your glutes and hold for 15-30 seconds.
  • Exhale while returning down to the mat.
  • Repeat the Bridge pose for 5-10 repetitions, 

P.S. The focus should be on maintaining proper alignment by engaging your core and glutes. 

Knee to Chest Stretch

  • Lie flat on a yoga mat or carpet.
  • Bend your knees with your feet flat on the floor.
  • First, inhale, and as you exhale, gently bring one knee towards your chest. You should feel a stretch in your hip and lower back. Try to interlace your fingers around your knee. 
  • Be in this position for 15-30 seconds. Continue to deep breathe with your entire focus on the stretch. 
  • Keep the opposite leg relaxed, with your foot remaining flat on the floor.
  • After holding the stretch, slowly release your leg back down to the starting position.
  • Repeat the stretch on the other side, bringing the opposite knee towards your chest.
  • Try to do 3-4 reps on each leg. 


  • Begin with your face down on the mat with forearms and toes supporting your body weight.
  • Keep elbows directly beneath shoulders and forearms parallel to each other.
  • Maintain a straight line from head to heels.
  • Avoid arching or rounding your lower back, and breathe normally. 
  • Try to hold the position for 10-20 seconds initially and increase it gradually to a minute. 
  • For best results, prevent sagging or lifting of hips.

Bird Dog Exercise 

  • It starts with your hands and knees in a tabletop position. In this position, your wrists are directly under your shoulders and knees under your hips.
  • Maintain a neutral spine position.
  • Now inhale and slowly extend your right arm forward with your thumb pointing up towards the ceiling.
  • With your right arm forward, extend your left leg straight back behind you parallel to the floor, with your toes pointing down towards the ground.
  • Hold the extended position for a few seconds (10-15 seconds)
  • Exhale as you return slowly to the starting position.
  • After returning to the starting position, repeat the exercise on the opposite side. Try 5-10 reps on each side.


  • Try to do a gentle warm-up to prepare your muscles and joints. Walk at a comfortable pace
  • Maintain proper posture while walking to prevent strain from mid-back pain
  • To avoid any strain, walk on flat and even surfaces. 
  • As you feel more comfortable with walking, try to increase the intensity and duration of your walks gradually. 

Bend Over: 

  • The lower body should have you standing with feet shoulder-width apart and knees slightly bent. The upper body of your back must be straight, shoulders relaxed, and chin tucked slightly.
  • Inhale deeply and exhale slowly as you hinge forward at the waist, keeping your back straight. 
  • Lower your upper body towards the floor. Try reaching your hands towards your feet. 
  • Hold the forward bend position for 15-30 seconds. It would be best if you experienced a gentle stretch along the mid-back, hamstrings, and lower back. 
  • Inhale as you rise back up. Use leg and core muscles to support the movement.
  • Perform the bending exercise 5-10 times, gently and mindfully. Like for every other exercise, you must maintain proper form and alignment throughout the movement. 

The golden rule while exercising is that all movements must be done gently, and jerky movements must be avoided. If you feel too much pain or discomfort, then pause and take a break. You may go back and try it again after a while or once after speaking to your healthcare professional.

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