Home / Blog December 23, 2022 Updated on January 04, 2024

5 min read

7 Benefits Of Sleeping With A Pillow Between Your Knees

A pillow between the knees helps side sleepers correct sleeping posture by keeping their hips and lower back straight, alleviating pain from conditions like arthritis and sciatica. Easing pressure on the hips with a body pillow may also improve overall comfort and help you get a restful night's sleep.

bearaby pillows between knees


Placing a pillow between knees keeps the hips open for proper alignment, helping you adjust into a more comfortable, proper side sleeping posture for a better night's sleep.

A leg pillow can ease chronic back pain, knee pain, joint pain, and hip pain from conditions like arthritis that get aggravated by sleeping on your side, for it helps correct your sleep posture.

Body pillows can also prevent compression of nerves in the legs resulting in better blood circulation and less muscle cramps, and lead to a more restful night's sleep.

Did you know?
Physiotherapists and chiropractors have recommended sleeping with a pillow between the knees for years as it can help ease the burden that side-sleeping has on our backs

10% of the general population struggles from hip pain and chronic back pain, which prevents them from sleeping comfortably without pain relief. While various factors result in these impediments to restful sleep, sleeping with a pillow between your knees can help significantly lessen the pain caused. Let's delve into the 7 benefits of sleeping with a pillow between your knees!

1. Makes Side-sleeping More Comfortable

Side sleeping is the most natural sleeping position for the majority of us, but there's no doubt that it can cause some of us to toss and turn as we try to find the best sleeping position.

Gravity pulls the limbs down to earth and puts pressure on the shoulder and hip joints, the discomfort from which can result in muscle cramps and waking up in the middle of the night, resulting in decreased sleep quality.

Don't let all of that get you down, though. If you're a habitual back sleeper who wants to switch to your side because of sleep apnea or indigestion, there's good news: Using a supportive pillow beneath your legs, such as opting for a knee pillow or a leg pillow, can help relieve pain by fixing your spinal alignment gradually - allowing for a good night's sleep! As you are keeping a plush pillow between your knees, which helps relieve pressure on your joints, you will start feeling more comfortable in your sleep posture sleeping on your side.


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2. Arthritis Relief

When it comes to hip pain, one of the main villains is arthritis - the chronic back pain, knee pain, leg pain, numb legs, and many other symptoms of arthritis is a villain that impedes a good night's sleep.

There are a few different types of arthritis, and they can all lead to pain from swollen joints causing friction. Unfortunately side sleeping can make this worse as your heavy limbs put stress on those joints.

Thankfully, sleeping with a specially designed knee pillow in between your legs can help your hip joints reach proper alignment and stimulate blood flow; unlike a regular pillow, a knee pillow between your legs will help fix your sleep posture and sleeping position. If you want a fully supportive pillow that helps you settle into a comfortable sleeping position and eventually let you adjust into a good sleeping posture as a habit, we would recommend a full-sized body pillow to sleep comfortably.

Why not try out our Cuddler, if you are looking to fix your sleeping position? A full-body pillow that can also function as a knee pillow and a leg pillow, the Cuddler is made of delightfully squashy, yet supportive Melofoam™, which molds to your frame and melts away joint pressure, massaging pressure points. The Cuddler also helps stomach sleepers transition into side sleepers by reducing joint pressure and giving proper support to your whole body; it also helps keep your spine neutral, which can help with spinal misalignment, allowing for more comfortable sleep.

3. Aligns Your Spine When Used With The Proper Head Pillow

No matter what position you choose, your spine may give you grief in the morning. There are ways around this, such as sleeping with a pillow under your knees if you're a back sleeper or keeping one under your tummy if you like to sleep on your front - all of which help you seek natural alignment and maintain good posture.

If you sleep on your back, a small pillow under the back of your knees such as a bolster pillow like our Cuddling will reduce stress on your spine by keeping your knees aligned, and support the natural curve in your lower back.

If you’re a side sleeper, the method of choice for keeping your spine straight is the ol’ pillow and leg sandwich.

Without a pillow between the thighs, your upper leg is bound to fall forward, leaving it in an open-scissors position with the rear leg. This twists the spine which can be a major problem for people with a history of slipped discs.

The perfect side dish to the pillow sandwich? A thick pillow so that your neck doesn’t droop down. This helps keep the entire spine in a healthy line.

4. Keeps Hips Aligned

As far as keeping the body aligned goes, the hips should be as high on everyone’s list of priorities as the spine. And keeping them in a healthy position is one of the other benefits of sleeping with a pillow between your legs for relieving pressure and less pain.

Unfortunately, lying on your side usually leads to one leg naturally closing over the other. While it may feel great at first, this can make hip misalignment pain worse and result in poor circulation, and end with your sleep getting interrupted.

And that’s the challenge of sleeping on your side. Keeping your legs properly stacked can get old quickly. So, if you’re someone who’s been diagnosed with hip misalignment, your doctor has probably advised you to try a pillow between the knees.

Whatever the cause of your hip pain, keeping them square during sleep can help ease it. And a cushion can lend a powerful helping hand.

5. Sciatica Relief

Ever feel pain and numbness spreading from your lower back down to your legs? If you answered ‘yes,’ you may have sciatica.

Sciatica is a condition that’s often caused by a slipped disc pressing on the sciatic nerve – the largest nerve in the body, responsible for supplying sensation to the lower back and parts of the leg.

Sciatica can be extremely difficult to sleep with because the pain flares up with the smallest changes to your lower back posture. Unfortunately, twisting with one leg across the other doesn’t exactly help matters.

That’s where sleeping with a pillow between your legs can help get more comfortable sleep. It keeps the hips, legs, and spine in a stable position, preventing movement that could lead to pain shooting down your legs.

7 benefits of sleeping with a pillow between knees

6. Prevents Numbness In Limbs

One other issue that side sleepers are all too familiar with is dead limbs. The good news is that you may be able to bring them back to life with a Cuddler!

Another article from our Napperhood explains how your sleeping position can affect the nerves in your arms, leaving them numb, tingly, and sometimes even in pain. It’s one of the ways that side sleeping can go wrong, but snoozing with a cushion between your legs and arms can help in the same way it helps your lower back and hips.

The cushy column keeps your shoulders and hips open, leaving more room for major nerves to breathe, helping with pain relief and spinal alignment. It may help you say goodbye to numb legs by promoting better blood circulation, ultimately helping you achieve quality sleep.

7. Leads To Deeper Sleep

Take the increased comfort, benefits to multiple hip and back conditions, and less compression of the nerves, and put it all together. What do you get? Improved sleep.

In particular, studies show that use of body pillows in a side position leads to more time spent in the deeper stages of sleep. That’s good news for a recuperating body - especially helpful for pregnant women!

Participants in the study who used the cushions wound up getting XX% more deep sleep than those who didn’t. The reason for this is likely as simple as making sleeping on your side more comfortable.

In other words, more comfort equals more Z’s.


A pillow between the knees has all kinds of benefits for side sleepers. The added cushion keeps the hips open, relieving joint pain while also having potential benefits to keeping your spine aligned, and better sleep. Healthy individuals and those with pre-existing conditions can both get a boost from a body pillow.