Straight back, bending from hips

hi. I just started yoga in March and working from home I practice every day, usually twice.

I injured my back 30 years or so ago. I had a variety of back classes as part of my recovery. So I have ways of moving that are habitual that avoid certain stresses. These are not tailored to me, they are generic. One of the no-nos is what is done in most classes, as part of forward fold, when you come back up half way to a straight back. I have not done that because it’s against what I was taught in back class.

I guess I’m asking for input on my approach. Also, since the teachers are so good about anticipating pain points and stress points that I am surprised no one seems to know about this potential problem. They’re awesome about everything else.

Thanks for DYWM.

1 Like

I’m sure David will provide guidance, but obviously if this is something that is not good for your back, I would not do it. You could stay in the forward fold and then move into the next pose. What were you taught in back class if you are hinging from the hips? Also, I’m so sorry you had a serious back injury so long ago. Those are no fun!

1 Like

One thing I do is keep my knees “soft”. I also have to be mindful of my lower back and that slight bend in the knees allows me to stay safe while I’m practicing.

1 Like

Thanks for the feedback!
I have found I feel safe avoiding that straight back half fold. That puts more weight into my lower back.Knees soft also helps.

1 Like

I also injured my back a few times in my life, so I’m very careful not to aggravate it. Have you tried my two class series on yoga for the lower back, @lucidbee? Here’s the link to the first one:

Yoga for Lower Back Pain: Strengthen, Stretch and Relax Your Back I

Lower back pain is difficult to work with since there can be a variety of causes and the therapy depends on what is happening with the musculoskeletal structure around the injury. If one specific movement is causing pain, then absolutely avoid it.

A forward fold with a flat back is primarily stretching the hamstrings, which pull on the bottom of the pelvis, moving the pelvis into a forward tilt. Perhaps that movement is aggravating your back.

I hope this helps!

Take care,


Thanks David. I have been doing those classes and they have been helping I think, as my lower back aches have diminished. I realize I can protect my lower back better than I have been with my core. Great stuff.

1 Like