Tight Back Muscles: Top 6 Causes and 4 Exercises

Are you suffering from chronic back pain without knowing the reason too? Well, muscle spasms or lumbar joint pain causes tight back muscles.

An ideal approach to separate the reason for tight back muscles is the beginning of the indications. People with tight back muscles due to lumbar spine joint inflammation have chronic pain, and they often compare tight back muscles with intense injury. 

Studies state that almost 80% of Americans complain about one lower back injury in their lives. Read on to know the causes and cure of the same!

Causes of Tight Back Muscles:

1) Lumbar Strain

Depositphotos 68970319 S
Source: Depositphotos
A Lumbar strain is the most well-known reason for back stiffness. This issue happens because of physical problems related to the back muscles and tendons that help keep the spine stable. Patients might recall the underlying occasion that set off their muscle fit.
Yet, the indications of a lumbar muscle strain can be serious. The tension will happen around the muscles that help the spine:
  • Extensors: Back and butt cheek muscles
  • Flexors: Abdominal muscles and hip muscles
  • Obliques or rotators: Side muscles

2) Lumbar Spine Osteoarthritis

Depositphotos 226832922 S
automotive. stocks on Depositphotos
Lumbar spine osteoarthritis is a chronic overuse condition. As joint inflammation advances, ligaments and plates in the lumbar spine start to thin and vanish. It causes stiffness and pain as bone rubs against bone.
It can make developments like bowing, stooping, and contorting troublesome. X-rays can affirm osteoarthritis by recognizing bone harm, osteophytes, hardening, and the deficiency of joint ligament.
Still, they might be less valuable in the beginning phase of joint pain when the signs are less noticeable. Clinician experience is pivotal in concluding the nonappearance of definitive proof.

3) Improper Sitting Posture

Depositphotos 147486157 S
belchonock on Depositphotos
At the point when you sit for quite a while, the accompanying changes happen in your spine:
  • Expanded pressing factor inside every spinal segment.
  • Decreased strength in the muscles of your upper and lower back.
  • Diminished supplement for the spinal tissues.
When you hunch or sit on the edge of your seat, then the strain on your spine is more. It can cause solidness and agony. A stationary way of life can fuel these changes, making spinal firmness create inside an hour of sitting.
To keep away from tight back muscles, use an upstanding sitting stance. Roll your shoulders back with the ears over the shoulders and the upper arms corresponding to your middle.
While sitting in an office seat, you need to stay away from continuous use of the backrest and start sitting correctly to activate your center muscle.

4) Dehydration and Shrinking of the Disc

Depositphotos 11185063 S
Wavebreakmedia on Shutterstock
Your spinal circles are stun retaining cushions between your vertebrae that disperse loads inside your spine. Age-related changes can cause degeneration in these circles, adjusting their biomechanics.
When a disc degenerates, there is a disruption in its fibrocartilage part, water loss, and decreased height. These progressions can cause spinal firmness, particularly during bowing movements.
Treatment, as a rule, incorporates physiotherapy, exercise, prescriptions, and getting thinner (if relevant). If you experience tight back muscles that don’t resolve through self-care and your everyday activities, discuss them with your primary care physician.
A specialist can help distinguish the reason for your tight back muscles and detail a treatment plan for the basic condition.

5) Inflammatory Changes in the Spine

Depositphotos 43325009 S
vadimrysev on Depositphotos
Inflammation in joints in your spine can cause it to become less flexible and fuse, resulting in stiffness. Two common examples are:

a) Ankylosing Spondylosis

Ankylosing Spondylosis is when spinal inflammation results in the gradual fusion between adjacent vertebrae. The condition causes incremental stiffness and chronic pain in the lower and upper back.

The stiffness usually improves with regular exercise, not with the help of rest.

 b) Osteoarthritis

Osteoarthritis is the collapse of the protective cartilage between the facet joints which is present in your spine. Due to this, your facet joints produce more friction upon action, causing you pain and stiffness.

You might suffer from stiffness, usually in the morning. You can ease the activities during the day but the stiffness peaks again after long periods of inactivity.

The treatment of both Ankylosing Spondylitis and Spinal Osteoarthritis is possible with medication, exercise, and lifestyle changes.

6) Tight Thigh Muscles

Depositphotos 27487381 S 1
Maridav on Depositphotos
Tightness in specific muscles in your thighs or hips may change the biomechanics of your spine. Your hamstring muscles go through the rear of every one of your thighs. This huge mass of muscles can turn out to be tight for various reasons,
These include actual inertia or an absence of extending before or in the wake of working out. At the point when your hamstrings are tight, they become more limited.
These progressions can influence the ebb and flow of the lower part of your spine, upsetting the arrangement of the spine with the pelvis (hip). Thus, you may feel firmness in your lower back with or without torment.
The firmness is more articulated when you twist your spine forward. Tightness in the iliopsoas muscle can make solidness inside the portions of your spine. In serious iliopsoas tightness, spinal insecurity may happen. The spinal tissues can be disturbed as a result, something you wouldn’t like.

Risk Factors of Tight Back Muscles

Anybody can suffer from tight back muscles, even kids and youngsters, these components may put you in more danger of creating back torment:

1. Age:

Back torment is more normal as you get more established, beginning around age 30 or 40.

2. Absence of Physical Activity:

Feeble, unused muscles in your back and the lack of exercise for core muscles may prompt back pain.

3. Obesity:

Being overweight puts extra weight on your back and spinal column.

4. Infections:

A few sorts of joint inflammation and malignancy can add to back pain.

5. Inappropriate Lifting:

Utilizing your back rather than your legs can prompt back torment.

6. Mental Conditions:

Individuals inclined to melancholy and tension seem to have more danger of back torment.

7. Smoking:

Smokers are more likely to experience back pain which can lead to Herniated Circles. Smoking can also lead to a danger of osteoporosis.

Treatment of Tight Back Muscles

Depositphotos 44256367 S
Maridav on Depositphotos
Some home remedies may assist with tight back muscles:

1) Heat

Heat can cause vasodilation of blood vessels to loosen up muscles and assuage joint hurt. If you have joint pain or a physical issue over about a month and a half old, heat can improve it to a great extent.

2) Ice

Ice can contract veins to numb agony and decrease irritation.

3) Movement

Since bed rest can aggravate tight back muscles, continue to move with light action, like yoga. Stay away from exercises that include curving your back or hard work.

4) Pain Meds

Pain relievers— like anti-inflammatory drugs, ibuprofen, acetaminophen, and naproxen — may assist with pain caused due to tight back muscles.

5) Unwinding Procedures

Meditation, Kendo, and profound controlled breathing assist a few groups with loosening up their back muscles to diminish solidness and uneasiness.

6) Back Massage

Back rub or massage treatment helps to loosen up muscle tissue to diminish excruciating fits and compressions.

Other Treatment Options:

  • Acupuncture
  • Cognitive Behavioral Therapy
  • Low-Level Laser Therapy
  • Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction
  • Multidisciplinary Rehabilitation
  • Exercise – for prevention

Exercises for Tight Back Muscles

Performing these exercises for tight back muscles can help alleviate pain due to tight back muscles.

1) Lying Knee Twist

  • Use this development to extend the paraspinal muscles and fortify muscular strength.
  • Lie on your back and expand your legs straight out.
  • Curve the correct knee up and get it over the left half of your body.
  • Stand firm on a foothold that permits you to feel a delicate stretch through the back and hindquarters muscles for 20 seconds.
  • Fix your center muscles and turn back to focus.
  • Rehash many times on each side.

2) Cobra Stretch

  • This development is useful to extend tight muscular strength and the lower back.
  • Start by resting on your stomach with your legs spread.
  • It would help if you planted palms on one or the other side of your head with your lower arms and elbows level on the ground.
  • Push your body upwards, so your weight is lying on your lower arms. Make sure to keep your hips on the floor.
  • When you arrive at an agreeable position that extends your abs and lower back, hold for 10 seconds.
  • Go back to the opening pose and repeat it many times.
  • If you have more extraordinary adaptability in your lower back, take a stab at fixing your arms.

3) Knee to Chest

  • Use this stretch to adjust the pelvis and stretch the lower back and backside muscles.
  • Level on your back with your toes towards the sky.
  • Twist your correct knee and test your balance dependent upon your chest.
  • Fold your arms over your thigh, knee, or shin, and pull the knee towards your chest.
  • Hold for 20 seconds and stretch out the leg to the beginning position.
  • Repeat many times on each leg.

4) Yoga Cat/Cow

  • Start this move by stooping down on the ground.
  • Keep your hands underneath your shoulders and knees beneath your hips. 
  • Breathe out and curve your spine.
  • Breathe in, fix your center muscles, and round your back like a feline.
  • Move among developments and stand firm on each footing for 5-10 seconds.
  • Rehash many times.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. What are the symptoms of tight back muscles?

If you’ve pulled your back muscle, you might experience a dull aching and rigidity in your back, as well as general aches and pains.

2. How can I relax my back muscles naturally?

Get plenty of rest, drink plenty of water, and avoid overworking the affected muscle. Applying heat or cold to the muscle might give quick relief.

3. How long does back tightness last?

Continuing moderate discomfort and stiffness are common for one to two weeks as muscles heal.


Tight back muscles can be annoying to a very great extent and should be cared for and treated immediately. Taking medical advice and talking to your doctor about the pain can help a lot.

First off, try easing it off with yoga and home remedies, but if the issue persists, reach out for medical attention. Stay safe and healthy!

Read more from us here.

Last Updated on by gourvigupta


Ayushi Mahajan

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *