PRESSURE POINTS FOR BACK PAIN: Guide to Acupressure Points for Back Pain Relief (2023)

Back pain is a common ailment that people experience these days. Many factors contribute to it, including our sedentary lifestyle, lack of exercise, and even overwork. In addition to traditional physical therapy, massaging pressure (acupressure) points can provide significant relief from back pain caused by stress, exhaustion, and spasms. Continue reading for information on how to treat shoulder and lower back pain, as well as acupressure points for back pain during pregnancy.

Acupressure began nearly three millennia ago in China. It entails applying pressure to acupuncture points all over the body to relieve back and other general body pain and promote overall well-being.

Pressure to these points in the acupressure technique serves to increase the flow of vital energy called Qi (pronounced chi) through passageways called meridians that connect the body’s vital organs.

How Can Acupressure Help With Back Pain?

Acupressure is an old method of treating pains in the body as well as a variety of ailments. According to the notion, there are pressure points on the body where the flow of our natural energies can be controlled to heal the body of infections. A complex mapping system enables acupressure practitioners to locate and alter energy flow points. Back pain caused by injury, stiffness, stress, and other reasons can be addressed by applying regulated pressure to corresponding points on the body. The procedure increases blood circulation and relaxes stiff muscles, providing temporary relief.

Lower Back Pain Relief Pressure (Acupressure) Points

Here are some pressure (acupressure) points for the lower back and hip for lower back pain relief.

#1. CV 6 Acupressure Point

The CV 6 stomach point, also known as the Sea of Energy point, is widely used to alleviate lower back pain. By strengthening the muscles in the lower region of the body between the waist and hip, applying pressure to these points provides long-term relief from lower back pain.

The Point’s Location

Hold three of your fingers together to find the point: index, middle, and ring. Place three fingers directly beneath the navel. The CV 6 is located in the firm region you can feel with your ring finger.

What You Must Do

  • With the three fingers clasped together, apply hard pressure on the point.
  • For about 1 minute, apply consistent pressure on the point.
  • Repeat the workout two or three times in a 10-minute interval.
  • Those who have gastric issues or a weak stomach can apply milder pressure with the base of their palm.

#2. Point B23 of Acupressure

The pressure B23, also known as the Kidney Shu, is one of the most important points for treating lower back pain. Stimulating these pressure points reduces muscular tension and provides long-term relief from lower back pain. It is best done with the assistance of a therapist or an assistant.

(Video) Pressure Points For Back Pain Relief

The Point’s Location

The point is located in the area between the rib cage and the hipbone. Find the spot where the inner bladder line joins the center of the waist to find it.

What You Must Do

  • The therapist presses down on the B 23 point for roughly a minute as you lie down on your stomach.
  • As the therapist raises the pressure on the point, take deep breathes and exhale deeply.
  • Once you’ve achieved your pain threshold, release the pressure.
  • Repeat after a minute of continuous pressure.

#3. Point B47 of Acupressure

B47 is located next to B23 and is another important site for treating lower back pain. In some meridian charts, it is also labeled as B52. Pressure applied to this region releases tension in the lower back muscles and alleviates pain. This point, like B23, requires the assistance of a therapist.

The Point’s Location

The point is placed on the right margin of the erector muscle group on the outer bladder line near the middle of the waist.

What You Must Do

  • The therapist applies consistent pressure to B47 while you are lying on your stomach for about a minute.
  • As the pressure is applied to the point, take deep breaths and slowly exhale.

#4. GV4 Acupressure Point

The Governing Vessel 4, or GV4, is another important acupressure point for treating lower back pain. The pressure at this location, also known as the Life Gate, is the most effective in relieving lumbar back pain. It is also used to treat knee weakness, male sexual issues, stress, and chronic weariness.

The Point’s Location

GV4 is located near the waistline, between the vertebrae, at the same level as B23.

What You Must Do

  • You will need a therapist to work this point, as you will with all of the acupressure (pressure) points on the lower back.
  • Take deep breathes while lying on your stomach and gently exhale while pressure is applied to the location.
  • Apply consistent pressure for about a minute, then release.

#5. B60 Acupressure Point

Bladder 60, often known as B60, is an acupressure point on the leg. It can be stimulated to alleviate stiffness and lower back pain. It is also used to alleviate neck pain, headaches, and dizziness. Pregnant women should avoid this point because it has the potential to initiate labor.

The Point’s Location

B60 can be located between the outer ankle bone and the Achilles tendon. The Kunlun Mountains are another name for the pressure point’s location.

What You Must Do

  • B60 is located midway between the Achilles tendon and the mid-ankle bone.
  • Grip the ankle with the thumb directly on the spot and exert pressure for 30 seconds before releasing.
  • Alternate between legs and repeat 3 to 4 times per session.

#6. LV 3 Acupressure Point

The LV 3 point, also known as Tai Chone or the Great Rushing point, is used to treat lower back pain, stress, limb pain, and other ailments.

The Point’s Location

LV 3 can be discovered around 3 inches from the tip of the big toe, where the bones of the big toe and the next toe connect.

PRESSURE POINTS FOR BACK PAIN: Guide to Acupressure Points for Back Pain Relief (1)

What You Must Do

  • Apply light pressure to the region with your thumb for approximately 30 seconds, then release.
  • Alternate between both legs and repeat 3 or 4 times in each session.
  • Back pain can be relieved by applying pressure to this spot every day for a week.

#7. Point B54 of Acupressure

Bladder 54, commonly known as B54, is an acupressure point that is also labeled B40 on some meridian charts. Stimulating these pressure points on both legs aids in the relief of stiffness and lower back pain caused by diseases such as herniated discs and sciatica, as well as the control of muscle spasms and leg pain.

The Point’s Location

The Center Crook is located near the back of the knee, in the middle of the crease.

What You Must Do

  • Apply steady pressure to the pressure point with your thumb for around 30 seconds.
  • Repeat the exercise for a total of 10 to 15 minutes.

Points of Pressure (Acupressure) to Relieve Upper Back Pain

The pressure (acupressure) points for the upper back and neck are as follows:

(Video) 5 Pressure Points for Pain Relief - Ask Doctor Jo

#1. GB 21 acupressure point

This point, also known as Jian Jing, is widely used to treat neck pain, stiffness, shoulder stress, and headaches. People suffering from back or shoulder pain tend to be most tense in GB 21. This point should be utilized with utmost caution because it has the potential to induce labor. As a result, it is best avoided during pregnancy.

The Point’s Location

GB 21 is located on the top of the shoulders, with the point two fingers away from the base of your neck.

What You Must Do

  • Rub the upper shoulder with the opposite hand to identify the tightest region where the strain is.
  • Hook the index and middle fingers over the GB 21 point.
  • Allow the hook to sustain the weight of the arm when applying pressure.
  • Massage for 4-5 seconds, then release the pressure.

#2. GB 10 acupressure point

The GB 10 acupressure point reduces tension and aches in the neck and head while also increasing the body’s hormonal activities.

The Point’s Location

The pressure point lies one thumb’s width below the skull and one thumb’s width away from the spine.

What You Must Do

  • Apply hard and prolonged pressure to the spot with the thumb on the same sidearm.
  • To get the intended result, pressure should be administered multiple times throughout the day and night for 2 to 3 minutes at a time.

#3. TE3 acupressure point

This point, which is placed behind the knuckles, can be utilized to relieve back pain, neck stress, temporal headaches, and shoulder tightness.

The Point’s Location

The point is placed directly behind the knuckles, between the groove formed by the tendons joining the fourth and fifth fingers. The area is also known as the central islet.

What You Must Do

  • Place the thumb of the opposite hand over the TE3 behind the 4th and 5th knuckles.
  • Apply firm pressure to the groove with the tip of the thumb.
  • Continue to apply pressure for 4 to 5 seconds at a time.
  • Perform it many times every day to relieve upper-body stress.

#4. LI 4 acupressure point

The LI 4 is an acupressure hand point that can help with upper back pain, neck stiffness, facial strain, headaches, and toothaches. Pressure applied to this spot regularly relieves stiffness and stress generated throughout the day.

The Point’s Location

The point is located between the thumb web and the index finger. Bring the two fingers together so that the thumb is completely in touch with the index finger. There will be a bulge in the muscle, and the highest point of this bump is where the LI 4 point is.

What You Must Do

  • Grip the pressure point with the thumb and index finger of the opposite hand.
  • Apply pressure for 5 to 10 seconds and then relax, or massage the area for 4 to 5 seconds.
  • To ease stress and pain, repeat 2 or 3 times.

#5. K 27 acupressure point

These K 27 acupressure (pressure) points are important for relieving tension in the chest, neck, and upper back. Activating this point allows you to breathe deeply and relaxedly, which is necessary for the release of endorphins.

The location of the back pain pressure points

On both sides, the point is one fingertip below the collar bone.

What You Must Do

  • For a few seconds, apply strong pressure to the points with opposing hands.
  • You can also apply pressure on the area while rubbing it to relieve tension.
  • Hold for 2 minutes, then take calm, deep breaths.
  • Every day, repeat the method 3 to 5 times.

#6. GV 14 acupressure point

GV 14 is a pressure point on the upper back that helps ease pain and stiffness in the neck and shoulders. It is extremely beneficial to patients suffering from cervical spondylosis.

The Location of the Back Pain Tension Points

The pressure points are placed at the shoulder level on the upper back’s midline.

(Video) Acupuncture Point for Lower Back Pain #acupuncturepoints

What You Must Do

  • The therapist applies pressure on the point for roughly a minute while seated.
  • The pressure will be limited by your pain and comfort thresholds.

#7. SI 15 acupressure point

The SI 15 pressure points aid in the pain of back and neck pain produced by cervical spondylosis due to bone and cartilage wear and tear. It can also help with stress and tension headaches.

The location of the pressure points back pain

The point is 2 finger-widths away from the spine in the middle of the should region.

What You Must Do

  • Because you are unable to reach the point, a therapist will be required to work on it.
  • The therapist applies pressure to the point with his or her thumb or knuckles while you are seated.
  • The pressure is applied for 1 to 2 minutes, depending on your comfort level.

When you know where to apply the appropriate pressure, you can perform acupressure at home on your own. However, some of the points must be completed by a skilled practitioner. Consult a licensed practitioner if you are unsure about trying acupressure on your own.

Pressure Points for Back Pain FAQ’s

Where are your pressure points on your back?

Pressure points run the length of your spine, from the top of your neck to the bottom of your back. Massage both sides of the spine’s surrounding muscle in the same way you would your neck, but without exerting pressure to the spine itself.

What fingers do you press for back pain?

Triple Energizer 3: This acupoint is placed in the groove between the fourth and pinky fingers and is stimulated to assist relieve upper back pain, headaches, neck stiffness, and shoulder pain.

How do you relieve back pain fast?

  • Exercise.
  • Use heat and cold.
  • Stretch.
  • Pain relief cream.
  • Arnica.
  • Switch shoes.
  • Workstation changes.
  • Sleep.

What is the best massage for lower back pain?

Shiatsu massage is a particularly efficient treatment for lower back pain. Shiatsu massage involves applying pressure to various regions of the body in a regular sequence.

(Video) 5 Back Pain Relief Treatments



Where are the pressure points to relieve back pain? ›

The points are on each side of your spine, about 2 finger-widths away from the spine. On each side, find the space below the spinous process of the second lumbar vertebra (spine in lower back) (L2). Directions: Use fingers or thumbs to apply deep pressure to the points.

What are the 6 self acupressure points to relieve back pain? ›

Which is the acupressure point for back pain? The acupressure points for back pain include the hip bone points (B48 and GB 30), knee back points (B 53 and 54), stomach points (CV 6), lower back points (B 23 and B 47), etc.

Does acupressure help with lower back pain? ›

A recent study found that people with chronic lower back pain who performed self-administered acupressure experienced improvement in pain and fatigue symptoms. A recent study finds that acupressure, a traditional Chinese medicine technique, can improve chronic pain symptoms in the lower back.

Where do you massage when your back hurts? ›

Start massaging the back at the lower back. Move your hands upward on both sides of the spine all the way to the shoulders. Make a circular motion as you move your hands upward. Press a bit more firmly with your thumbs as you make the circles.

What pressure points and feet help lower back pain? ›

Alternating thumbs, press your thumbs up and down the inner soles of your feet, concentrating on the area of your back that needs it the most. 2. For lower back pain, spend more time on the area along the inner sole between the heel and the middle of the foot.

What is the most famous acupressure point? ›

Bai Hui is the topmost acupoint on the body and translates to “hundred meetings point”. It is also known as Du 20 or Governing Vessel 20.

How long do you hold acupressure points? ›

Use your thumb or index finger to massage the acupoint with deep and steady pressure. Massage the point in a circular or up and down motion. Be careful not to remove the thumb or finger from the skin. Massage the point for one to two minutes.

What is better for back pain acupuncture or massage? ›

This study provides evidence that massage is effective in treating low back pain when compared with acupuncture and self care after 10 weeks of treatment, although the benefit over self care was substantially less at 1 year. Massage can help patients feel better sooner and use fewer medications.

Where is the pressure point for sciatica in the lower back? ›

The first is located just behind the big toe, and the second is located under the ball of the foot. To release these points, you can use a lacrosse ball or tennis ball. Place the ball under your foot and roll it around until you find a tender spot. Once you find a tender spot, apply pressure and hold for 30-60 seconds.

Is it better to sit or lay down with lower back pain? ›

If you're experiencing back pain when sitting, your impulse may be to lie down and then try to slowly progress back to sitting, says Dr. Atlas. But this is the wrong approach. You should lie down to relieve the pain, but the goal should be not to return to sitting, but rather to regain your ability to stand and move.

What are 3 common pressure points? ›

The most common sites are the back of the head and ears, the shoulders, the elbows, the lower back and buttocks, the hips, the inner knees, and the heels. Pressure injuries may also form in places where the skin folds over itself. And they can occur where medical equipment puts pressure on the skin.

Which acupressure point reduces inflammation? ›

So far, a number of acupuncture studies have shown anti-inflammatory effects of acupuncture treatment, mostly known at specific point ST36.

Where is the best place to massage your back? ›

Alternate your pressure on either thumb, moving from the top of the back all the way down to the person's hips. Make sure you are massaging the muscles on either side of the spine, not directly on the spine itself. Massaging over the spine can be very uncomfortable and dangerous if you are not trained properly.

What is the best part to massage the back? ›

You will find sensitive knots at the bottom of the groove, on the inner edges of the erector spinae, and on top of them. This is true for the entire back, but the most useful area ranges from the base of the neck to about two thirds of the way down between the shoulder blades.

What is the single best exercise for lower back pain? ›

Walking, swimming, and biking may all help reduce back pain. Start with short sessions and build up over time. If your back is hurting, try swimming, where the water supports your body. Avoid any strokes that twist your body.

Where is the extra 1 acupuncture point? ›

The extra 1 point lies between the eyebrows on the midline at the root of the nose. These extra points are not located on any of the 14 meridians. In 1984, the World Health Organization established an international standard for acupuncture point names including the 31 most common acupuncture extra points (12).

What is the 7 acupuncture point? ›

The location for Lung 7 is found just proximal (closer to the torso) to the styloid process of the radius bone (the bone in your forearm which ends closest to your thumb). A simple way to find this is by joining your hands between the thumb and forefinger. Your index finger should be resting along the radius bone.

Do acupressure points really work? ›

“Acupressure is more so used to ease symptoms such as headache, nausea, stress, and aches and pains throughout the body,” Purdy said. “It's generally not designed to cure or completely resolve specific diseases as a whole. But it can be really beneficial in alleviating symptoms that people have.”

What should you not do after acupressure? ›

Clients should avoid strenuous exercise, caffeine, junk food, alcohol, cold temperatures, digital screens, and, where possible, stressful situations. What's more, if clients leave their appointment feeling lightheaded or dizzy, they should avoid driving until they feel better.

What time of day is best for acupressure? ›

Generally speaking, most people use their acupressure mat in the evening. As the acupressure mat helps to relieve stress and relax the muscles, it can best be used in the evening as you will feel more relaxed when going to bed.

How many times a day can you do acupressure points? ›

If you hold individual acupressure points for a very long time, once a day, or even once every other day will be sufficient. If, on the other hand, the duration of the acupressure treatment is relatively short, you can then perform the acupressure three to four times daily.

What is the best massage for back pain and stress relief? ›

Hot stone massage is best for people who have muscle pain and tension or who simply want to relax. This type of therapeutic massage is similar to a Swedish massage, only the massage therapist uses heated stones in lieu of or in addition to their hands.

What are the disadvantages of acupuncture for back pain? ›

Some people experience mild, short-term side effects such as:
  • pain where the needles puncture the skin.
  • bleeding or bruising where the needles puncture the skin.
  • drowsiness.
  • feeling sick.
  • feeling dizzy or faint.

How many sessions of acupuncture do you need for back pain? ›

The number of treatments you require will depend upon your rate of improvement. Patty Wang, a Denver acupuncturist who trained in China and has been practicing for over 40 years, says that over 90 percent of her back pain patients — both acute and chronic — improve after two or three treatments.

What is the fastest and easiest way to relieve sciatica & lower back pain? ›

How you can ease the pain yourself
  1. carry on with your normal activities as much as possible.
  2. regular exercises for sciatica.
  3. start gentle exercise as soon as you can – anything that gets you moving can help.
  4. hold heat packs to the painful areas – you can buy these from pharmacies.

How do you fix back pain overnight? ›

By making simple changes in your sleeping position, you can take strain off your back. If you sleep on your side, draw your legs up slightly toward your chest and put a pillow between your legs. Use a full-length body pillow if you prefer. Mayo Clinic does not endorse companies or products.

How can I relax my back while sleeping? ›

If you sleep on your back, a small pillow under the back of your knees will reduce stress on your spine and support the natural curve in your lower back. The pillow for your head should support your head, the natural curve of your neck, and your shoulders.

How long should I stay in bed for lower back pain? ›

If you have back pain, bed rest can be useful, especially if you are in severe pain while sitting and standing. But it's best to limit bed rest during the day to a few hours at a time, for no more than a couple of days. That's because too much time in bed can do more harm than good.

How should I sit on my couch with lower back pain? ›

Start by standing in front of your sofa and push your bottom towards the edge of the backrest. Once you're in a sitting position, make sure your back is upright rather than hunched over. Lean back on the backrest with relaxed shoulders and don't keep your neck in an uncomfortable position.

What is the best drink for back pain? ›

Also, drink healthy herb teas and true teas (green, oolong, and white). Experts say that olive oil, green tea, and brightly colored fruits and vegetables have all been shown to reduce inflammation in cartilage in the spinal column, which helps to control back pain and stiffness.

What do you drink for back pain? ›

Turmeric milk might be a good home remedy for back pain. Add one teaspoon of turmeric powder to half a cup of milk (hot/cold) and mix it well. Add some honey for sweetness if needed. Drink this turmeric milk at night for possible relief from back pain.

What helps really painful lower back pain? ›

What are the most effective home remedies for lower back pain?
  1. Over-the-counter pain relievers. Over-the-counter pain medications often help relieve discomfort while you recover from a minor injury or strain. ...
  2. Hot and cold therapy. ...
  3. Gentle exercise.

What is the P6 acupressure method? ›

Pressure Point P-6 (Neiguan) Pressure point P-6 is also called Neiguan (nay-gwann). It is found on your inner arm near your wrist. Doing acupressure on this point can help with nausea and prevent vomiting.

What is sp 6 acupressure points? ›

The SP6 point is the junction point of the liver, spleen, and kidney meridians. Based on principles of traditional Chinese medicine, this acupuncture point is used to strengthen the spleen restoring balance to the Yin and to the blood, liver and kidneys.

How do you find the P6 acupressure point? ›

To find the right spot, place the first three fingers of your other hand across your wrist at the base of your palm. Place your thumb just below your three fingers. Gently press your thumb so you feel two large tendons. The P6 pressure point is located there, at the center of your lower wrist.

Which finger to press for sleep? ›

The spirit gate point is located at the crease on your outer wrist, below your pinkie finger. To treat insomnia: Feel for the small, hollow space in this area and apply gentle pressure in a circular or up-and-down movement. Continue for two to three minutes.

What are the forbidden pressure points? ›

Although there is no consensus on the full spectrum of forbidden points,3 those most frequently cited as contraindicated throughout pregnancy (at least before 37 weeks) are SP6, LI4, BL60, BL67, GB21, LU7, and points in the lower abdomen (eg, CV3–CV7) and sacral region (eg, BL27–34).

How long does it take for acupressure points to work? ›

A session typically lasts about one hour. You may need several sessions for the best results. The goal of acupressure or other types of Asian bodywork is to restore health and balance to the body's channels of energy and to regulate opposing forces of yin (negative energy) and yang (positive energy).

What are acupuncture points GB 41 BL60 ST36 and SP6? ›

The acuinjections at acupuncture points (GB41, BL60, ST36, and SP6) provide immediate relief of sensory symptoms and motor signs of restless legs symptom (RLS). An acuinjection can be promising and safe alternative treatment for pharmacotherapy in patients of RLS.

What does SP 10 acupressure point do? ›

Cools the blood, removes stasis of blood, regulates menstruation, tonifies blood.

What is SP 15 acupuncture point for? ›

4 cun lateral to the center of the umbilicus, lateral to muscle rectus abdominis. Abdominal pain and distension, diarrhea, dysentery, constipation. Strengthens the Spleen, strengthens the limbs, resolves damp, regulates Qi, stops pain, promotes the function of the Large Intestine.

What is si 19 acupressure points? ›

SI 19 Acupuncture Point Applications and Theory

The acupuncture point "SI 19" , 聽宮, is represented by "Ting Gong" in pinyin and "Auditory Palace" in english and may be found: Anterior to the tragus and posterior to the condyloid process of the mandible, in a depression formed when the mouth is opened.

Do pressure points really work? ›

When used correctly, acupressure seems like sort of a one stop shop for energy wellness. However, there is not much scientific research supporting the blind use of acupressure. Only a few studies have shown that it can be used to reduce pain or nausea, but not a conclusive amount, and not extraordinarily well.


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