Sleep Doctor independently selects the products we test. We may earn a commission if you buy through the links on our site.

Best Mattress for Stomach Sleepers With Back Pain


Written by Garen Glazier

Reviewed by Dr. Michael Breus

Expert Tested

Medical Disclaimer: The following content should not be used as medical advice or as a recommendation for any specific supplement or medication. It is important to consult your health care provider prior to starting a new medication or altering your current treatment.

Table of Contents

People who sleep on their stomach are especially susceptible to developing back pain, which can interfere with their ability to get a good night’s sleep. But while experts advise against this sleep position, research has shown that choosing the right mattress can help alleviate back pain and lead to better sleep quality.

Our product testers at The Sleep Doctor evaluated hundreds of models to find the best mattresses for stomach sleepers with back pain. We tried different firmness levels and examined how each one fared in providing support, with testers of varying body types having a say in our rankings.

In addition to sharing our top picks, we’ll discuss what to look for when shopping for a new mattress. We’ll also provide tips on how to prevent back pain if you sleep on your stomach.

Find your perfect mattress

Please select all options
Find my mattress

Read on to see why the following three options made our top picks list of 2023’s best mattresses for stomach sleepers with back pain.

Sleep Doctor’s Picks

slider image

Best Overall

Leesa Original Hybrid

Dr. Michael BreusReviewer Picture

The Sleep Doctor’s Review

If you’re a stomach sleeper who weighs less than 230 pounds, the Leesa Original Hybrid may be a good choice for you. Our testers appreciated its medium firm (6) feel and found that it provides very good pressure relief without compromising the support needed to keep back pain at bay.

Buy From Leesa


  • Thin memory foam layer provides comfortable contouring without excessive sinkage
  • Thick layer of pocketed coils promotes cooling airflow
  • Reinforced perimeter enhances edge support


  • Lacks firmness and support to keep stomach sleepers over 230 pounds comfortable
  • May not fully isolate the movements of co-sleepers

The Leesa Original Hybrid is a medium firm mattress with a hybrid construction. Its foam comfort layers relieve pressure and contour the body, while pocketed coils offer support and promote spinal alignment. It’s priced competitively, and our testers found that it performed well in multiple categories.

Why We Like It

Our team rated this mattress highly in several performance tests, including pressure relief, temperature control, and edge support. The pocketed coil support core gives the bed a consistent feel from edge to edge.

This mattress is an excellent choice if you’re a hot sleeper who wants a mattress that has foam’s pressure-relieving benefits but not the heat retention that often accompanies models with thick memory foam layers.

How Does It Feel?

The stomach sleepers on our team rated this mattress differently according to their weight. Those below 130 pounds gave it the highest possible rating, while stomach sleepers between 130 and 230 pounds gave it good comfort ratings. It was too soft for testers above 230 pounds.

The Leesa Original Hybrid’s combination of memory foam, polyfoam, and pocketed coils lends cushioning without inhibiting movement. The foam comfort system adapts to your body while the support core works to keep your spine aligned.

slider image

Best Value

Plank Firm

Dr. Michael BreusReviewer Picture

The Sleep Doctor’s Review

The Plank Firm Mattress is a flippable model with firm (7) and extra firm (9) sides. Our stomach sleepers found it kept them from sinking into postures that can cause back pain. It’s a great choice if you prefer a mattress that offers uncompromising support.

Buy From Plank


  • Sleeps cooler than the average foam mattress
  • Excellent ease of movement
  • Provides support needed by stomach sleepers over 130 pounds


  • May not provide enough cushioning for people seeking pressure relief
  • Does not isolate motion well
  • May require a partner to flip

The flippable Plank Firm Mattress is one of the firmest models on the market, which makes it a great fit for many stomach sleepers who experience back pain. We found that it’s well suited to stomach sleepers who weigh more than 130 pounds, but it may especially appeal to heavier individuals who need extra support to keep their spines aligned.

Why We Like It

Some stomach sleepers struggle to find a mattress that offers enough support, but the Plank Firm Mattress really delivers. Its cover is designed to minimize heat retention, while its high-density polyfoam support core facilitates spinal alignment. This model also scored highly during our edge support tests.

The Plank Firm Mattress has a more affordable price tag than many comparable mattresses, making it a compelling option for value-minded shoppers.

How Does It Feel?

True to its name, the Plank Firm Mattress provides very sturdy support. You can choose between two surfaces: firm and extra firm. During trials, the stomach sleepers on our testing team who weigh less than 230 pounds liked the firm side best, while testers above that weight level preferred the extra firm side.

There’s an extra polyfoam layer on the firm side that offers light contouring, making it a better fit for people who need a small degree of pressure relief.

Read Our Full Plank Firm Review
slider image

Best Luxury

Saatva Classic

Dr. Michael BreusReviewer Picture

The Sleep Doctor’s Review

Though Saatva bills its flagship model as an innerspring mattress, it has all the earmarks of the best luxury hybrids. Available in two heights and three firmness levels, our stomach sleepers preferred the Saatva Classic’s firmer options, noting that the coil-on-coil construction and thick Euro-top kept them comfortably supported.

Buy From Saatva


  • Zoned design enhances lumbar support
  • Sleeps cool while also providing above-average pressure relief
  • Comes with free White Glove delivery


  • May feel less comfortable for stomach sleepers under 130 pounds
  • Does not effectively isolate the movements of sleep partners

The Saatva Classic comes in soft (3), medium firm (6), and firm (8) options. You can also pick between 11.5-inch and 14.5-inch profiles. For each of the firmness options, our testers didn’t notice much difference in feels between the height choices, making it easier for shoppers to balance their firmness and thickness preferences.

Why We Like It

The Saatva Classic has high-end components, including an organic cotton cover and durable steel coils, which helped it score highly across many categories during our performance testing.

It also has several features that make it a great fit for stomach sleepers with back pain. The quilting on the mattress cover, zoned support in the comfort layers, and stronger coils in the center of the mattress are all intended to prevent sinking and keep the spine aligned.

How Does It Feel?

Stomach sleepers on our testing team over 230 pounds unanimously preferred the firm option. Those weighing between 130 and 230 pounds liked the more balanced feel of the medium firm mattress, while lighter individuals found the medium firm and soft options good but not exceptionally comfortable.

Overall, our testers appreciated the balance of pushback and pressure relief. They also highlighted its strong edges, which make it easier to get in and out of bed.

Read Our Full Saatva Classic Review

Why You Should Trust Us

The product testing team at The Sleep Doctor has years of experience researching mattresses. We’ve tried out hundreds of models, measuring how well each one regulates temperature, relieves pressure, isolates motion, and feels as a whole.

We also test how well each bed supports different body weights and sleeping positions. For this review, we took care to consider details specific to stomach sleepers as well as those who experience back pain.

Stomach Sleepers With Back Pain: What You Need to Know

Because stomach sleeping can put strain on your back muscles and spine, it is especially important to choose a mattress with features that support spinal alignment.

Is Stomach Sleeping Bad for Your Back?

Stomach sleeping can be bad for your back, especially if your mattress allows your midsection to sink. Some experts recommend avoiding this sleeping position because of the strain it puts on the back.

What Can Stomach Sleepers Do to Avoid Back Pain?

To avoid back pain, it’s generally advisable to use a mattress with enough support to keep your midsection from sinking and a low-loft pillow that doesn’t uncomfortably lift or tilt your neck.

Which Mattresses Are Better for Stomach Sleepers With Back Pain?

Medium firm to firm mattresses that offer strong support are generally better for stomach sleepers, including those who have back pain.

Stomach Sleeping and Back Pain: Is Your Mattress to Blame?

A mattress that’s not ideal for your body weight and sleeping position may cause back pain. If your mattress is too soft or if it’s old and beginning to sag, your midsection may sink, causing spinal misalignment. This could lead to back pain and stiffness after sleeping on your stomach.

There are also other reasons you may experience back pain upon waking, including health conditions like arthritis and unhealed injuries.

What Triggers Back Pain for Stomach Sleepers?

There are several common reasons why stomach sleepers experience back pain.

  • Misalignment of the spine: Soft comfort layers or inadequate support in the core of a mattress can cause a stomach sleeper’s midsection to sink lower than their limbs, head, and neck. This can result in misalignment of the spine and can lead to pain in the upper or lower back.
  • Strain on the neck and shoulders: Stomach sleepers must turn their head to one side so that they can breathe. Spending hours in this position may strain the neck and shoulders, leading to pain and stiffness. Some people find that stretching in the morning alleviates this discomfort.
  • Pillow with too much loft: A high-loft pillow can push the uppermost portion of the spine out of alignment. Use a low-loft pillow or try sleeping without a pillow, which some experts recommend.

How Stomach Sleepers Can Reduce Back Pain

People who sleep on their stomach can minimize back pain by choosing a mattress that’s supportive enough to keep their spine properly aligned. Some people may benefit from models that offer increased support beneath the midsection.

Key Mattress Features for Stomach Sleepers

Stomach sleepers should seek a mattress that supports their body weight and facilitates neutral spinal alignment. They should also consider other qualities that could enhance their comfort, according to their own personal preferences.

Mattress FeatureDescription
FirmnessWe measure mattress firmness on a scale from 1 (extra soft) to 10 (extra firm). Stomach sleepers generally prefer mattresses on the firmer end of spectrum.
SupportSleepers who weigh more generally need more support. This is particularly true for stomach sleepers, who typically require more supportive sleep surfaces than side or back sleepers.
Pressure ReliefMattresses use materials like memory foam and latex to relieve pressure. Stomach sleepers tend to need less pressure relief than side or back sleepers.
Ease of MovementA mattress with an even surface and plenty of pushback facilitates movement, which can be an important feature for people who tend to reposition their body during sleep.
Temperature RegulationPeople who sleep hot benefit from a mattress that effectively controls temperature. All-foam mattresses containing memory foam tend to trap heat, while hybrid, innerspring, and latex models often excel at regulating temperature.
Edge SupportA mattress with a strong perimeter tends to enable easy entry and exit from the bed. Strong edge support also increases usable surface area and is especially valuable for couples who share a bed.
Quality MaterialsMattresses made from low-quality materials tend to break down and sag earlier than those crafted from high-end components.

Choose a Firmer Mattress

We assign every mattress we test a firmness rating, with 1 being the softest and 10 the firmest. Most mattresses fall within the 3 to 8 range.

Stomach sleepers typically prefer mattresses with a firm feel. That said, body weight influences how firm a mattress feels to a person. Sleepers under 130 pounds generally prefer softer mattresses, while those over 230 pounds are more likely to enjoy firmer models.

Body Weight Ideal Firmness for Stomach Sleepers
Under 130 lbs.Medium Soft (4) to Medium Firm (6)
130-230 lbs.Medium (5) to Firm (7)
Over 230 lbs.Firm (7) to Extra Firm (9)

Keep Your Spine in Neutral Alignment

To ensure that the spine stays in alignment, stomach sleepers should look for mattresses that offer good support, particularly in the central zone of the mattress where the midsection rests.

Most stomach sleepers also enjoy light cushioning, which can provide pressure relief and contouring for sensitive areas. Soft, deeply contouring comfort layers, such as those made with thick memory foam, are generally not recommended for stomach sleepers, as they can lead to spinal misalignment.

Additional Tips to Keep Your Spine Aligned

You can enhance spinal alignment and comfort by following a few additional guidelines.

  • Use a soft, low-loft pillow: If a pillow used during stomach sleeping is too thick or firm, it can push the neck out of alignment. Using a soft, low-loft pillow may better facilitate neutral alignment.
  • Consider sleeping without a head pillow: If you continue to experience neck pain while sleeping on your stomach even with a low-loft pillow, you may want to forgo a pillow altogether.
  • Place a pillow under the pelvis for additional support: Placing a thin pillow under the pelvis can help bolster a stomach sleeper’s body and keep the midsection from sinking into the mattress.

Best Mattress Types to Ease Back Pain for Stomach Sleepers

The best mattress to alleviate back pain is one that provides adequate support and meets your individual needs. There are several types of mattresses that can achieve this.

Mattress TypeWhy It’s Good for Stomach Sleepers With Back Pain
InnerspringInnerspring mattresses use coils to create a supportive sleep surface with plenty of pushback and just enough cushioning for most stomach sleepers.
HybridHybrid mattresses blend the pressure relief of foam-based models and the traditional responsive support of innersprings to create a comfortable surface that’s both supportive and comfortable.
LatexLatex relieves pressure without compressing deeply, so sleepers get the benefits of a pressure-alleviating surface without losing support.
FoamAll-foam mattresses combat pressure point discomfort by combining contouring foams that relieve pressure with high-density foams that offer support. However, models containing deeply conforming memory foam may be too soft for stomach sleepers with back pain.

Innerspring Mattresses

An innerspring mattress has a spring core that is typically topped with thin cushioning made from fiber, foam, cotton, or wool. These beds are responsive and usually have plenty of pushback, so stomach sleepers are unlikely to feel as if they’re sinking into the bed.

Hybrid Mattresses

Hybrid mattresses typically have an innerspring or pocketed coil support core topped by a comfort system made from foam or latex. They are highly versatile mattresses that can be tailored to suit a range of sleepers. Stomach sleepers with back pain may like a hybrid that combines support and pressure relief.

Latex Mattresses

Natural latex is a buoyant and responsive material that comes from the same trees that produce rubber. It relieves pressure effectively while keeping sleepers well supported. Latex is a worthwhile choice for people who want cushioning but don’t like the close hug of memory foam.

Foam Mattresses 

Foam mattresses have comfort systems and support cores made from different types of foam. Many models use a combination of memory foam and polyfoam in the comfort system and denser polyfoam in the support core. They are known for relieving pressure, but some models can sleep hot.

Are Memory Foam Mattresses Good for Stomach Sleepers With Back Pain?

Memory foam mattresses, particularly soft models, compress beneath the body and conform to a person’s unique shape. However, the hugging sensation provided by these mattresses can be uncomfortable for stomach sleepers, who may sink too deeply around the midsection. Memory foam also has a tendency to retain body heat.

If you sleep on your stomach and are interested in a memory foam mattress, look for a model that’s firm enough to support your body weight, and consider a bed with a reinforced perimeter.

About The Author

Garen Glazier

Staff Writer, Product Testing Team

Garen is a health and lifestyle content creator. She realized the importance of sleep when her children made getting a good night’s rest more challenging. Garen is always learning something new about the wide world of sleep and sleep products. Married with two girls, ages 7 and 11, she is a book nerd and a lover of pop music, travel, and the Pacific Northwest.

  • POSITION: Side Sleeper
  • TEMPERATURE: Neutral Sleeper

Ask the Sleep Doctor

Have questions about sleep? Submit them here! We use your questions to help us decide topics for articles, videos, and newsletters. We try to answer as many questions as possible. You can also send us an emailPlease note, we cannot provide specific medical advice, and always recommend you contact your doctor for any medical matters.