Best Labor Positions for... Back Pain

This month, we're sharing a lot about labor positions. The good news is that there are many different labor positions to use throughout labor, in nearly any birth scenario. Today, we're covering labor positions that help during back pain or "back labor." Often, back labor pain occurs when baby is facing up and the hardest part of baby's head is against your tailbone, otherwise known as "occiput posterior" or "OP." Ideally, to soothe back labor, baby will rotate to face down sometime during labor. Your goals with finding ideal positions for back labor pain are to get baby to rotate and reduce the pain. Many of the positions below not only take the weight and pressure off of your back, but they also allow access to your back to relieve pain with massage, counter pressure, ice, and heat.

Ideal Positions for Reducing Back Labor Pain


Leaning while Standing

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Leaning while Kneeling









Hands & Knees/On All Fours









Supported by Water/Birth Tub



Backward Chair Sitting

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Slow Dancing



Standing/Kneeling Asymmetrical Lunge

Photos are from Penny Simkin's The Birth Partner. These positions will help encourage baby to rotate into a more comfortable and easier position for labor and birth. 

Penny Simkin Standing Lunge.pngPenny Simkin Kneeling Lunge.png


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