Ouch! Did you bend to pick something and felt a pricking pain in your upper back? Do neck and backaches hamper your spirit? The upper back originates at the base of your neck, unites both shoulders and extends down to mid-spine, including ribs. Stress and tension mostly build-up in the muscles of the shoulders and upper back, which can result in neck and shoulder pain.

Most people often let go upper back pain during workouts, however, it’s vital that you don’t neglect this region, as it plays an integral part in regulating your posture, core strength as well as movement. Regular stretching can support to ease back pain and also prevent it from returning.

Also Read: Suffering From Low Back Pain? Here Are Some Proven Exercises To Soothe Muscle Aches
Stretches To Relieve Upper Back Pain

Regardless of the reason-stooping over a mobile, sitting at a desk all day, or any injury - stretching and conditioning exercises can go a long way in speeding up your recovery process.

Read through this article to gain an insight about basic stretches that helps you to lessen pain in no time.

Stretch First

Loosening your muscles in affected areas with a good stretch helps to restore and maintain flexibility, promotes movement and improve blood circulation, all of which can eventually relieve pain. Do these stretches listed out for at least 30 seconds –preferably 1-2 minutes on each move.

Neck Side Bend And Rotation

Stand facing upward and start by tilting your neck to the right, you should feel the stretch through the neck to the trap muscle. After about 10 seconds, gently rotate the head in a counter-clockwise direction, hold for 10 seconds when you reach the left shoulder. Repeat steps rolling in a clockwise direction. Do this sequence for 2-3 times.

Shoulder Roll

Shoulder roll workout is great in strengthening shoulders and upper back. Stand with arms down at your sides. Roll shoulders backwards in a circular motion, do 5 rotations and then repeat 5 rotations forward. Do this 2-3 times.

Over Arm Reach

Sit comfortably in a chair, facing forward with feet rested on the ground. Stretch your right arm up above the head and reach to the left, bend your torso until you feel the stretch in the right lat muscles and shoulder. Repeat 5 times and then do the same stretch with left arm.

Pec Strech/Standing Wall Stretch

Lean into the doorway and place your forearms on the doorframe, with elbows bent at a 90-degree angle. Allow the weight of the body fall forward so that you feel a stretch in chest and shoulders, pause for 10 seconds and release. Repeat this 3 times.


Cat cow pose is good for strengthening the spine. The cow stretch activates the tailbone and spine’s root, while the cat stretch releases the tension of the neck and upper back.

Start on all fours with your neck neutral and palms directly placed under shoulders and knees under hips. Then inhale, tuck your pelvis and round out mid-back, drawing navel toward spine and drop head to relax the neck. Hold for 3-5 seconds and return to a neutral spine position and then look toward the sky, letting your back to sink toward the floor. Hold for a few seconds and repeat this pose 5 times.

Also Read: 5 Most Important Habits To Keep Your Spine Strong And Healthy

Thoracic Extension

This exercise helps to stretch the muscles of the back, thus may help in lowering upper back pain.

Kneel in front of a bench, place elbows on the bench in such way that shoulder-width apart. Kneel far down the bench so that you have enough space to drop chest through the arms and extend the spine. With knees firmly fixed on the ground, press chest towards the ground with elbows bearing the weight. Stretch spine as much as possible and hold the position for 10 seconds. Go back to the initial position, repeat this 10 times for 3 sets.

Scapular Squeeze

This exercise aims at stretching the scapulae that involve muscles as well as bones. It is a great stretch for improving the strength and flexibility of the scapulae. With your arms down by sides, squeeze blades together and hold for 10 seconds and release. Repeat this stretch 3 to 5 times.

Do these stretching sequences daily to regain mobility and lessen pain. Aim for at least 10 minutes per session. Always start with a warm-up to get the blood flowing before moving into the strengthening moves. If pain persists or worsens seek immediate medical help.