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Health and Wellbeing

What Is the Best Position for Lower Back Pain?

Munhil Imran

Munhil Imran

19th December, 2023

Woman in pain due to sitting position on chair

Navigating the challenges of back pain, especially during the nighttime hours, can be more than just a hassle; it can also significantly impact the quality of your sleep. The discomfort can often pose as a barrier to finding the best resting position. Thus, leading to sleep deprivation, insomnia or the start of other sleep disorders. But what is the best position for lower back pain?

Whether your back pain stems from poor posture, stress, arthritis, or another underlying medical condition, having a supportive sleeping position is essential for your general health. Those with mobility limitations may find it harder to get into the ideal position, but this doesn’t have to be an ongoing issue. With the ability to adapt to different sleeping positions and providing personalised support, adjustable beds have been a great aid for those with limited mobility. In this article, we share with you our research on what is the best position for lower back pain  - ensuring you get the rest you truly deserve.

Best sleeping positions for lower back pain

Finding the best sleeping position for lower back pain can vary from person to person, and it's essential to consider individual preferences, comfort and mobility limitations. Here are some general recommendations for the best sleeping positions for lower back pain:

Sleeping on your back

If you sleep on your back, placing a pillow under your knees can help you relax your muscles and maintain the curve of your lower back. Sleeping on your back also allows for better spinal alignment and helps uphold the natural curve of your spine - reducing the risk of developing pain or discomfort associated with misalignment. Moreover, the weight of your body is evenly distributed across the mattress which can reduce the risk of you developing sore joints and allows for better air and blood circulation.

Sleeping on your side

One of the best sleeping positions for lower back pain is on your side. It’s best to draw your legs up towards your chest slightly and rest a pillow between your legs for better alignment of your spine. Doing this not only supports and takes pressure off, but also does the same for your pelvis and hips. For individuals with respiratory challenges or those who may experience difficulty breathing, sleeping on the side can improve airway patency. It may reduce the likelihood of snoring and enhance overall respiratory comfort during sleep. Also, for individuals with digestive issues, sleeping on the left side may help ease symptoms like acid reflux - preventing stomach acid from flowing back into the oesophagus.

While each person's comfort preferences may vary, it's generally advisable for individuals with mobility issues to either sleep on their side or back for better spinal alignment and reducing pressure on joints. Try to avoid sleeping on your stomach as this can contribute towards spinal misalignment, added pressure on joints, breathing difficulties and problems in changing position.

Elderly lady sleeping on side

Best sitting positions for lower back pain

Maintaining good sitting posture is crucial for preventing and easing pain you may be experiencing. Here are some tips for finding the best sitting positions for lower back pain:

Lumbar support

Choose a chair that provides support for the natural curve of your lower spine. If your chair lacks adequate lumbar support, use a small pillow or cushion to fill the gap between your lower back and the chair.

Keep your feet flat on the floor

Place your feet flat on the ground, with your knees at a 90-degree angle. If your feet don't reach the floor, you can use a footrest to support them.

Maintain good overall posture

Another of the best sitting positions for lower back pain is for you to sit in the chair with your back straight and shoulders relaxed. You should avoid slouching or leaning forward as this can cause strain and discomfort.

Take breaks and stretch

Stand up and stretch at regular intervals. Prolonged sitting can contribute to lower back pain, so short breaks to move around can be beneficial. With Oak Tree, you can rise comfortably with our made-to-fit rise and recline chairs.

Woman holding back due to pain

Best bed positions for back pain

Finding the best bed positions for back pain can vary from person to person, as individual preferences and conditions differ. However, an adjustable bed can offer support towards easing lower back pain. Here are a few suggestions:

Zero gravity position

Elevate both the head and feet slightly to mimic a "zero gravity" position. This neutralises the spine's gravitational pull and may relieve pressure on the lower back.

Elevated legs

Raise the lower part of the bed to elevate your legs. This can help reduce pressure on the lower back and improve circulation.

Lumbar support

Adjust the bed to provide additional support to your lower back. Some adjustable beds have specific lumbar support features that can be customised.

Flat position

Experiment with a flat position as well. Sometimes, a simple, flat surface is the most comfortable for those with lower back pain.

Trial and error

Everyone's body is different, so it might take some trial and error to find the most comfortable position. Gradually adjust the bed to different positions and pay attention to how your lower back feels.

Pillow support

Use pillows strategically to support the natural curve of your spine. Placing a pillow under your knees when lying on your back or between your knees when lying on your side can help.

Woman touching her area of pain in her back

Overall, whilst it’s important to remember that an adjustable bed can provide relief, it's only one aspect of managing lower back pain. Maintaining a healthy lifestyle, including regular exercise and maintaining a healthy weight can also contribute to easing the lower back pain you may be experiencing. If your pain persists or worsens, consider seeking advice from a healthcare professional for a thorough evaluation and guidance tailored to your situation.

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