7 Best Lower Back and Hip Stretches During Pregnancy

Experiencing lower back and or hip pain during your pregnancy? No worries, I got you covered. I put together a list of stretches that my pregnancy patients got the most symptom relief from and loved. Please keep in mind that stretching is only suppose to feel like a stretch, NEVER PAINFUL.

Before starting your stretching regimen, consider these helpful and safety tips.

  • Stretching should never be painful as mentioned. You are always win control of intensity of the stretch so if it is painful trying backing off on the pressure you are applying. Still painful after you modified your pressure, then don’t keep doing the stretch, it’s is not the one for you.
  • Research also shows that holding a stretch for 30 sec duration results in the best stretch aka the stretch actually takes place. I also suggest 2-3 reps at a time unless specified otherwise.
  • Research also shows that completing them on frequently basis is a factor to effectiveness.
  • If you have known issues, please consult with your MD or a physical therapist first to make sure these will not cause or irritate existing symptoms.
  • Important to breathe while holding your stretches. If you are having difficulty breathing, count out loud.

Now I introduce to you the 7 Best Stretches for Lower Back and Hip Pain During Pregnancy! These stretches come in various positions so try them both to see which ones you like best.


  1. Piriformis Stretch ( Seated and Lying Down)
  •   Seated: Sitting up nice and tall in your chair, place the foot on top of the other knee to make “Figure 4”. You can either push down on the knee of the leg that is crossed over or bend your trunk forward from your hips (not slumping forward) to feel the stretch.  (example: If you want to stretch your right piriformis, place the right foot on top of the left knee and push down on the right knee. You should feel the stretch in your glut region.)

    Seated Piriformis Stretch
    Seated Piriformis Stretch
  • Lying down: Lie on your back and bringing one ankle to the top of the other knee. With a towel or your hands grasp around the uncrossed leg pulling to tolerance. You should feel the stretch on the side that the is crossed over.
Supine Piriformis Stretch
Supine Piriformis Stretch


2. Lateral Hip stretch (Standing or Lying Down)

Lying Down: Lying on your back. Bend one knee and keep the other one straight against the surface then with hand opposite of the bent knee pull that knee across to the opposite side (example: if the right knee is bent, you are going to pull the right horizontally to the left with the left hand.)

Lateral Hip Stretch Supine
Lateral Hip Stretch Supine


Standing Lateral Hip Stretch: Find a wall or a chair. Stand next to the wall with the painful side of the lower back or hip closest to the wall. Use the arm closest to the wall to support yourself and help keep balance while taking a step away from the wall with the leg closest to the wall. Then cross the opposite leg over and let the hip just slowly lean towards the wall/chair.

Standing Lateral Hip Stretch
Standing Lateral Hip Stretch


3. Standing Hamstring Stretch

I think this is easiest with a chair or a step/box to support the leg you want to stretch. Just place the leg up there and slowly bend forward bending at the hips, not slumping forward. You should feel the pull in the back of the thigh.

Standing Hamstring Stretch
Standing Hamstring Stretch


4. Sidelying Trunk Rotation

I think this is my favorite. While this stretch is not directly targeting your lower back or hips it does help lower back and or hip pain during pregnancy. This stretches helps improve the mobility of the mid back ( aka your thoracic spine) which means less demand on your lower back and consequently your hips.

So start by ling on a side, doesn’t matter which side because you would want to do both. Bend both knees to chest to at least 90 degrees with your hands together as the first picture shows. The with your top hand open like a book, head and neck following hand, just as the second picture shows. You should feel a good stretch in the mid to upper back. I recommend about 15 reps on each side nice and slow.

Thoracic Mobility Stretch
Thoracic Mobility Stretch







5. Modified Child’s Pose Stretch

Here is the picture of your typical version of Child’s Pose but depending on the size of the belly, you may not be able to complete the stretch this way.

Lower Back or Hip Pain During Pregnancy
Childs Pose

So try this instead. Sitting in a chair with your knees apart and reach for the floor straight forward. You can also isolate stretching the left or right side of the lower back  by reaching for the opposite foot. For example, say you want to stretch your right lower back, the reach with both hands to the left foot.


6. Cat and Cow

Here is the starting position, both hands placed under shoulders and knees under hips. Start by rounding your upper back and moving the head down then slowly start to arch your lower back while looking up as pictured in the second picture. Take nice slow deep breaths are you change between the 2 positions. I recommend 10 reps per position.

Quadruped Cat and Cow
Quadruped Cat and Cow

 7. Single knee to chest

Lying on your back, grab behind one knee and pull towards your chest.

Lower back and Hip Pain During Pregnancy
Single Knee to Chest

Lower Back Pain During Pregnancy

Lower Back Pain During Pregnancy
Lower Back Pain During Pregnancy

Hello all you glowing pregnant ladies out there! Let me guess…you are either at the end of your second or in your third trimester experiencing lower back pain due to pregnancy? Not comfortable right?

Feeling lots of pressure in your pelvic region and your feet are swollen or even pain shooting down your leg? No worries, this is  ALL VERY COMMON amongst preggers! As you have noticed, your body goes through so many drastic changes to accommodate that growing baby. For most women, the lower back pain, hip pain, the uncomfortable pressure in your pelvis, the swollen feet, etc will go away after you give birth! But for some, the lower back pain does not go away so let me explain.

During pregnancy there are LOTS of changes, physically, hormonally, emotionally, etc. as you may have experienced for yourself. BUT no worries there are things you CAN DO to help manage the pain in terms of exercises, sleeping positioning and sitting posture.

Exercises mainly focus on stretching of tight hip and lower back muscles, and gentle core stabilization to take some pressure off your lower back. Here are some exercises {COMING SOON} that may help!

Another great alternative to help your lower back pain during pregnancy is walking in water at the pool! The buoyancy of the water will take some pressure off you lower back and hips.

In regards to posture, listen up ladies! First thing is first. If you have not already, please invest in a good PREGNANCY body pillow to help you comfortably sleep through the night. The body pillow designed for pregnancy is better designed to support your body compared to the “non-pregancy” body pillow. If you don’t have a body pillow, let me show you how you can mimic the body pillow by using 3-4 regular pillows. Click here for the video link {COMING SOON.} 

Second, when sitting a few things to remember. First, sitting on a hard surface will be more aggravating than soft surface so if you have to carry around a seat cushion (can be a folded fluffy bath towel or a bed pillow) so be it. Second, using a lumbar support in your chair will be your second best friend. My favorite lumbar roll is the McKenzie Lumbar Super Roll. Trust me you never sit the same after using this. I even strongly recommend this to my non-pregnany patients with lower back pain and they love it!

Another alternative to a lower back support while sitting, is using a bed pillow, nothing too fluffy and here is how. Make sure you are sitting with your hips slightly higher than you knees and you can adjust by the chair lever or sitting on a seat cushion and the pillow should be placed long way all the way you seat and you sit back upright to the chair back. Try adding a folded bath towel also in your lower back if you need more support. To see what I mean, check out this video {COMING SOON.}

SIDE NOTE: If you are experiencing sciatic nerve pain due to pregnancy, I wrote another blog about it so check it out!