How to Train Yourself to Sleep on Your Back

Although sleeping on your back may not be your preferred sleeping position, it has numerous health benefits. It keeps your spine in a neutral position and properly aligned which can further help prevent or at least reduce back pain.

In addition, sleeping on your back can minimize acid reflux and help drain excessive fluid so you don’t wake up with a puffy face. It also helps prevent acne and face and neck wrinkles, etc.

If you are primarily side or stomach sleeper and you want to try to train yourself to sleep on your back, you probably know how difficult it is.

It doesn’t come naturally to most of us and maybe it has to do something with the fact that we spend time in the womb in fetal position. Most of us probably just carry on throughout our life sleeping in that position, but it is not impossible to train yourself to sleep on your back.

Read our article and learn the easiest ways to do this. Last updated Apr 29, 2020 @ 8:02 pm

How to Train Yourself to Sleep on Your Back

Here are several methods that can help you get the best results:

Get the Right Mattress

If you have a softer mattress that has already developed indentations from your body, then it is time for you to get a new mattress and the best one for you would be a firm mattress.

A mattress that is too soft won’t work well for you if you want to sleep on your back. It will likely cause your hips and core to sink too much and you will wake up with a sore back. Furthermore, it will also make you feel stuck in foam and enveloped by your mattress.

That’s why you will need a firmer mattress. You can check out our Best Mattress for Back Sleepers guide to and see what are our top picks for this sleeping position.

If your bed is still new and you don’t want to buy another one, then you can consider getting a firmer mattress topper. It will firm up the surface of your bed and change the feel of your mattress so it can provide you with a better support necessary for back sleeping.

Make Sure Your Neck Is Properly Supported

To get a comfortable night’s sleep while sleeping on your back you will also need a pillow that is the best for this sleeping position.

You should opt for the pillow that can keep your head in a slightly raised position. Pick a firmer pillow that will prop up your head enough to keep your neck in a proper “C” curve.

A pillow of medium loft or an adjustable pillow that you can adjust to your liking will work just fine. Avoid those soft and floppy pillows as they can’t provide you with the amount of support you need for a comfortable sleep and pillows that are too lofty as they will throw your neck and head out of a natural alignment and cause neck pain and headaches.

If you have an adjustable base, you won’t need any special pillows. You can easily adjust it to keep your head and upper part of the body slightly raised.

Put a Pillow Under Your Knees or Lower Back

If you’re not accustomed to sleeping on your back, you may initially experience some pressure and pain in your lower back.

To make yourself more comfortable and get a relief, you can try to put a pillow under your knees. This will also help you relieve the pain in your back and prevent you from rolling to your side.

Build a Pillow Fortress 

To make sure you don’t roll to your side, you can also build a pillow fortress and surround yourself with pillows.

Add pillows to either side of you. Put one underneath each arm and on the sides of your stomach. It might feel a bit uncomfortable at first, but after a few nights you will get used to it and eventually you won’t need them anymore.

Try a Starfish Position

Sleeping on your back doesn’t mean you have to lie straight all night with straight legs and your arms constantly by your side. This will make you feel uncomfortable after some time.

Try spreading your arms and legs out and sleeping in the so called starfish position. By doing so, you will distribute your weight evenly across the bed and prevent the appearance of pressure points in your lower back and your joints.

Be careful while spreading out your legs and arms if you share your bed with a partner as it might not leave enough room for your partner.


Sleeping on your back has numerous health benefits and if this is not your preferred sleeping position but you would like to train yourself to sleep on your back, there are ways how you can do this.

Above we have mentioned some of them and hopefully they can help you. However, you should keep in mind that the change can’t happen overnight and it can take some time to train yourself to sleep on your back.

If this is what you really want, you should stay persistent and don’t give up. But, if it doesn’t work for you and makes you feel uncomfortable and causes you problems, it’s ok to give up.

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