Backward bending helps to stretch the front portion of the torso, shoulders, pelvic
girdle and legs. In addition, they stretch the abdominal organs, relieving compression.
Backbends also help develop more strength in the muscles in the back, which must
contract during back bends.
Proper Technique in Bending Backwards
It’s important in backbends to control the proportional relation between lengthening the
thoracic curve and deepening the lumbar curve. You don’t want too much arch in the
lumbar spine without any movement in the thoracic spine. Bending that way can
cause compression and strain in the lumbar region. Like the lumbar region, the
cervical region should not arch excessively in relation to the movement of the thoracic
region. One way to maintain a balance between the movement of the thoracic region
and the lumbar region is to first expand and lift the chest on inhale (which lengthens
the thoracic spine), and then keep the abdominal muscles slightly contracted as you
exhale and bend backwards. Keeping the abdominal muscles slightly contracted
helps prevent excessive arch in the lumbar region and helps to bring more of the arch
into the thoracic region, which keeps the backbend in balance.