Change your sleep posture to reduce aches and pains

Do you wake up in the morning with a sore neck that works itself out as the day goes on? Are your hips more sore in the morning than the end of the day? Your sleep posture might be to blame. You may have heard that sleeping on your back is the best, but most of us just can’t get comfortable in that position all night long.

Back sleepers

Despite being touted as the best position, piling two or three pillows under your head can quickly undo any good. If you were to keep the position and stand up, is your chin close to your chest? Aim for just enough support under your neck, without tilting your chin too far down. 

If low back pain is a problem, try placing a pillow under your thighs to reduce strain.

Side sleepers

Regardless of which side you pick, you want a pillow that provides enough support without overextending your neck in the other direction.  If you were to keep the position and stand up, is your head tilted to one side? Aim for a neutral head position while lying down.

Your hips are another concern when side sleeping.  Regardless of your body shape, your knees will always be lower than your hips and this puts a strain on your low back as the night goes on. Putting a pillow between your knees and ankles bridges this gap.

Stomach sleepers

Unless you have a massage table at home, your head will be turned to one side for the majority of the night. We tend to favour one side and this can show up in our neck muscles over time. You may find yourself getting headaches that are always on one side of the head from this imbalance. Pillow height is also important in this position. Consider a pillow that is malleable, letting you shape it specifically for your neck but that allows your face to turn towards the mattress rather than the ceiling.

Natalie Amell

Natalie Amell is the owner and founder of Amell Massage Therapy. She is a Registered Massage Therapist, having graduated from the College of Massage and Hydrotherapy in Toronto in 2007. She has worked in several clinics since then and recently opened her own clinic in Vankleek Hill.

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