Four Simple Exercises For Upper Back Pain Relief

Source: Flickr/skatoolaki

Yesterday, I read an interesting article about text neck on Today’s Health.

Chiropractor Dean Fishman told that more and more people come to him to get relief from upper-back pains caused by excessive use of gadgets like smart phones, laptops and tablet computers.

What I found very disturbing is that his youngest patient was a 3-year-old toddler who played too much games on an electronic device!

Spending hours hunched over your smart phone or laptop every day is going to lead to weak and overtaxed muscles in upper back and eventually pains in the upper back, neck and even elbows and wrists.

The first thing to do for upper back pain relief is to check your posture repeatedly during the day and take frequent rests. Don’t let your neck hang like the guy’s in the picture on the top left!

Exercises For Upper Back Pain Relief

There are also some simple exercises you can do during the day to counteract the hunching tendency. The idea is to first stretch the tight chest muscles and then strengthen the upper back muscles.

I found a video by Scott Malin and Cory Brusseau demonstrating two simple chest stretches and two strengthening exercises for upper back and shoulder muscles. Remember to keep your shoulders down!

My exercise tube hanging in my door.

It’s a good idea to have a pair of resistance tubing with handles both in your office and at home. I have a resistance tube always hanging in my door and I do rows as often as often as possible during the day to counteract my hunching tendency.

I hope you find some upper back pain relief with these simple exercises. However, if you have suffered from upper back pain for a long time, it’s going to take some time before you “feel” results.

P.S. Resistance tubes with handles are a convenient and inexpensive piece of home exercise equipment. Grab your pair on Amazon.

Best Wishes,



  1. Hi Satu! I think that people need to do *much* more back exercises to strengthen their backs. Then, they wouldn’t slump so much in their chairs in the first place. Those back stretches sound good too.

    I’m thinking about getting a heavy-duty resistance band(s) of a heavier weight(s) after seeing a video of how useful they are for weightlifting exercises without the weights around–when I’m not at the gym.

    I have a surprise coming for you this week. 😀

    🙂 Marion

    • Satu says:

      Hi Marion! Resistance tubes with handles are really nifty, much better than ordinary elastic resistance bands I used earlier.

  2. Marion says:

    My surprise for you is on today’s post on my blog.

    🙂 Marion

  3. Lori says:

    I think good posture is so important, too. My job is keyboard oriented all day and I try to keep that in mind. Of course, my issue is the lower back and not upper with my herniated disk, but core strengthening is so important for the back!

    • Satu says:

      I agree about core strength, Lori! My tend to have more trouble with my upper back and neck but my low back also informs me when I’ve been sitting too much. Without Feldenkrais Method I would be a cripple!

  4. Wow, this sounds awesome, I’ve been trying to get better posture and it’s hard when you’re using a laptop. I think the whole office is using laptops without docking them (with a separate keyboard,mouse and monitor at eye level).

    Stretching the chest is ridiculously helpful. Would an ergonomic keyboard help?

    • Satu says:

      Hi Rudolf!

      I don’t know how important having an ergonomic keyboard really is – the most important thing is to use a separate keyboard so you can raise the monitor at your eye level and still type comfortably at the keyboard.

      I use a separate keyboard and a big monitor when I use my laptop at home. I hate using the laptop keyboard and reading text on a small screen…

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