The Latest Innovation in Back Care Designed By A Leading Physiotherapist

Endorsed by Back Pain Physiotherapy Specialist of the Year, 2021

The Buttafly is an outstanding new concept in back care designed by TillyLou James, a Chartered Physiotherapist with 30 years of clinical experience in the NHS, the military, and private practice.
It is endorsed by award-winning physio, Dr. Fatemeh Rezaei-Sajadinia, Back Pain Physiotherapy Specialist of the year 2021, UK.

Lying down with the Buttafly under the pelvis as shown here for 5-10 minutes once or twice a day can help resolve back pain and sciatica without the need for medication. The dynamics of this are explained in our video below.

Using the Buttafly can also help the spine to recover from poor postural habits and activities that involve repetitive movements.

Range of movement and overall flexibility will also improve with regular use. As with any new exercise or piece of equipment, to benefit the most, proper instruction and guidance are recommended. See our Events Page for details.

“The Buttafly has been an absolute revelation to me.” Paul Harrold who has suffered from back pain for 30 years.

“Blown away!” exclaims Tracey Mellor, a Yoga and Pilates Teacher, when trying out the Buttafly for the first time.

How the Buttafly Works

A Standard Buttafly carefully positioned under the pelvis off-loads the base of the spine while at the same time, allowing the body to rest in a comfortable position. The unique way in which the spine, pelvis and hips are supported facilitates a relaxation the deep muscles of the trunk. As a result, the spine releases, unravelling and lengthening as you literally lie back and let yourself unwind.

This can be particularly helpful at the end of the day and interestingly even has an effect in the morning.

Laying on our back in bed, the bulk of the weight of our lower trunk rests on the sacrum – the triangular bone at the base of the spine. In effect, this “fixes” the spine – the softer the mattress, the more the spine is held in place.

With the Buttafly in place, direct pressure on the base of the spine is avoided, and a gentle inversion further assists the release of the spine.

Using The Buttafly For Back Care

Inversion Therapy

Inversion therapy has long been used by Physiotherapists to reverse the effect of gravity on the spine.

The idea behind it is to reverse the effects of gravity and effectively create  more space in each of the joints between the vertebrae – the bones of the spine.

Many NHS Physiotherapy departments continue to use traction beds for this purpose.

At home, inversion tables and gravity boots are used by many people to relax their back.

The supine positioning with the Buttafly offers a more gentle approach and yet has been shown to be more effective in releasing the spine than any of these methods.

Spinal Traction Bed

Case Studies

Paul Harrold, Christchurch

"I can't recommend the Buttafly highly enough - it's been a life-changer."

“I’ve had chronic back pain and sciatica for almost 30 years now.

I’ve been to physiotherapists, chiropractors, and osteopaths – all have helped in their own but nothing has really resolved the problem.

But I’ve recently discovered the Buttafly and it’s been an absolute revelation to me. Even after the first session I had, I noticed a difference. As the days progressed I felt my posture had changed, I was more confident in my running – overall a huge change, and in my ability to sit for long hours at my desk.

Rob Dewing, Lymington

"It was amazing how quickly I could feel the difference!"

“I find as a keyboard-based worker that my back often gets achy towards the end of the day, and that’s how it was when I went to see TillyLou to check out the Buttafly.

After a quick look at me in standing, she soon had me lying on the floor with the Buttafly positioned in a comfortable position so that my back was tilted up away from the floor. 

I laid there for around four minutes but even within a minute or so I could start to feel my back settling into a more comfortable profile, and the tension easing. It was amazing how quickly I could feel the difference as my body adjusted deeply to the new alignment.

After the Buttafly was taken away I laid back flat on the floor and could feel how much my shape had changed. It was even more obvious when I stood up, as you can see from the photos. It’s amazing how having the right support can adjust your posture.”

Will The Buttafly Work For You?

The Buttafly can be used by people of all ages and abilities; the most common uses are to improve their posture, give relief from back pain, and increase ease and freedom of movement of their spine.

Many of our back care customers fall into the category of suffering from Non-Specific Back Pain  (as diagnosed by doctors) –  this is where no cause of pain has been identified.

Other customers present with what they deem to be postural or occupational backache.

The Buttafly is to be recommended for people who have habitual poor posture, especially when related to long periods of sitting or bending at work.

It is also favoured by sportsmen and women who find great advantage in the very specific release of their deep trunk muscles and hip flexors.

Our customers include weight-lifters, long-distance cyclists and runners, and rowers, and those who sports dominate one side of the body, e.g. golfers and tennis players.

Conditions That Benefit From Using the Buttafly

People with the following conditions report using the Buttafly with remarkable benefits:

  • Hip pain/ arthritis of the hip
  • Chronic pelvic pain
  • Scoliosis
  • Multiple sclerosis
  • Parkinson’s disease
  • Post-spinal surgery including discectomy and spinal decompression
  • Following removal of metalwork for scoliosis
  • Those with metalwork still in situ for scoliosis
  • Facet joint syndrome
  • Sacroiliac joint pain
  • Pregnancy

How Often Should You Use the Buttafly?

We recommend that you start off with 5 minutes at least once every day. It generally takes a few minutes to fully relax, and in our experience, the body often releases layer by layer.

It’s ideal to increase the time you lay on the Buttafly by building up in 5-minute increments. We find that quite quickly people are able to find out what’s right for them.

The Buttafly Effect can be considered as like a toothbrush for the spine. We use a toothbrush to brush away the remains of food and promote long-term oral health. In the same way, the Buttafly Effect allows our spine to unwind, releasing the stresses of the day, so that we feel better TODAY and are looking after our spine for the future.


In the same way that no one exercise or treatment will work for everyone, there is no guarantee that the Buttafly will work for you.

The most important factors are that the Buttafly must be used according to the instructions given and the position MUST feel comfortable.

Please follow the instructions provided here and also with your Buttafly.

You may experience some general discomfort as you get used to the position, and if you already were experiencing some pain, this may not disappear straight away. We recommend that should you experience any increase in symptoms or new pain, you discontinue the exercise and try it again an other day. 

How To Position the Buttafly in Supine

Come into a low bridge, place the palm of one hand on the sacrum, middle finger pointing down towards the tailbone.

Use the other hand to position a Standard Buttafly with the high end towards the feet under the pelvis so that the sacrum can fall away in the indent.

Straighten out the legs one by one and make minor adjustments so that you are comfortable and the pelvis is resting in neutral and the low back is neither arching away from the floor nor dropping towards it. You will want the buttock flesh to be cushioned in between the sit bones and the Buttafly to avoid compression around the sacrum.

If you place the Buttafly to high under the buttocks, the pelvis will be dragged into an anterior pelvic tilt, causing an increase in the natural arch of the lumbar spine (lordosis).

If the Buttafly is placed too low under the buttocks, the pelvis will drop back into a posterior pelvic tilt, causing a reversal of the lumbar lordosis so that your low back will feel like it is hammocking towards the floor.

Take the time to find the “sweet spot” where the pelvis is in neutral. When this is in place, the lumbar spine will also be in neutral. Once here, if there is any discomfort or sense of a stretch, either at the front or the back of the body, place a support under the knees/ankles up to the same height as the hips.

Here, this is achieved by placing a Standard Buttafly under each ankle.

If any stretch or discomfort persists beyond a few minutes, come into the crook lying position again, remove the Buttafly, straighten the legs one by one and rest flat or with a pillow under the knees.

Go back to the exercise at another time.

The Buttafly Effect is only achieved when there is no  pain, no stretch and no discomfort.

The objective of this exercise is intended as general back care.

Please follow the instructions here – also provided on the leaflet provided with your Buttafly.

It has also been shown to be helpful for back pain and sciatica, and may be included in therapeutic exercise  programmes.

If you are in any doubt, or would otherwise like to have an online consultation with TillyLou James, book here.

we recommend The STANDARD BUTTAFLY for back care


The Standard size Buttafly works best for back care:

  • The wedge-shape is integral to the release that is given;
  • The  low profile means that the inversion remains gentle;
  • The low profile also reduces any stretch of the hip flexors as this is counter-productive to the spine releasing. A pillow under the knees may be required to further reduce any stretch across the front of the hips – please watch the video above for more information.

Are you an Allied Health Professional or a Pilates or Yoga Teacher?

Enjoy discounts, special offers, early bird prices on our workshops and more. We invite you to apply to Kaleidoscope, our programme for affiliates.