Top 3 Exercises For Your Upper Back Pain

By Dr Ken Nakamura+

Upper Back Pain: Top 3 Exercises for Your Upper Back pain- Toronto Downtown Chiropractor

Do you have upper back pain ?


Is your pain about the size of a golf ball on one side of your upper back? Then you need to do these exercises so you can feel better.


What’s the cause of your upper back pain?  Many web sites say things like:


  • Rhomboid Muscle Trigger Point
  • Levator Scapula Muscle Trigger Point
  • Rib Subluxation (Rib Out of Place)


While these may be the cause of your upper back pain, for most people upper back pain comes from the neck. Holding your  chin up and out leads to the trigger points and rib subluxations leading to upper back pain, like the picture below.


See Also: 3 Exercises For Your Neck Pain

Upper Back Pain:The Green Circle Shows The Typical Area Of Upper Back Pain Near The Shoulder Blade Causing Shoulder Blade Pain- Toronto Downtown Chiropractor

What I am saying is that your posture is the cause, and the pain in the upper back is the symptom.  When you bring your chin up and out your neck comes forward.


For every inch / 2cm that you bring your neck forward the weight that your neck has to hold up doubles. Your head is about 12 lb/5kg so when you bring your head forwards by one inch/ 2cm your neck has to hold up the equivalent of 24lb/10 kg.


Most people bring their head forwards 3 inches/6.6 cm  or more. So you are holding up the equivalent of 36lb/15kg. Now that’s a heavy head!


Your heavy head is held up by the muscles at the back of your neck and the upper back. With enough pressure the ribs go out of place, and causes muscle trigger points like the rhomboid muscle and levator scapula. It even puts more pressure on your discs and ligaments. With enough time the ligaments get stretched out the discs start to bulge and you get a muscle imbalance.


See Also: Neck Pain-The Best Exercises For Your Stiff Neck


I see most people when they are 25 years or older but the problem is getting more acute. I have seen 10 years old that play with  ipads  with bad posture triggering upper back pain.


Exercises For Your upper back pain.


Stretch Your Trapezius Muscle

Headache Pain Exercise #5 Trapezius Stretch

  • Turn 45 degree to one side.
  • Bend your neck sideways.
  • Put your hand on your head and let the weight of your arm pull your head down.
  • Let the opposite shoulder relax and drop. If you don’t feel a stretch bring your shoulder down by holding onto a eg. table.
  • Do 3 sets for 30 seconds several times a day.


Stretch You Levator Scapula


  • Do the trapezius stretch.
  • Turn your head in the opposite direction till you are halfway in the opposite direction with some forward flexion.
  • You should feel it on the same side you felt the trapezius stretch.
  • Do 3 sets for 30 seconds on both sides several times a day.


Stretch The Muscles At the side and Front Of Your Neck

Upper Back Pain -Stretches For Front Of Your Neck to Fix The Upper Back Pain - Toronto Downtown ChiropractorUpper Back Pain: Stretches For Front Of Your Neck to Fix The Upper Back Pain - Toronto Downtown Chiropractor

  • Put both hands on your chest just below the collar bone, pushing down.
  • Extend your neck backwards and to opposite the side.
  • Do 3 sets for 30 seconds on both sides


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Dr Ken Nakamura

Who is Dr. Ken? I’m a father, spouse, chiropractor, and I love what I do! I created Bodi Empowerment to bring you and everyone-else safe and effective methods for self-treatment by basing my articles on research to everything I can. Still many parts will be based on 18 years of experience, seminars, and collaboration with other health experts; which means you will get opinions as well. Sometimes my articles won’t agree with what is currently accepted, but I am not here to please everyone. I’m here to empower you through the knowledge that I give you. Dr. Ken works at Rebalance Sports Medicine in downtown, Toronto.

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