Sciatic pain can be a debilitating condition that limits mobility and greatly undermines one’s quality of life. Thankfully there is a lot that can be done to treat the condition. In this article, let’s talk about 3 stretches that can help you relieve or prevent pain. Stretching is a very important part of the treatment process. Many people ignore how important regular stretching for sciatica is.
Before we jump into the 3 stretches, be sure to set an intention to be patient with yourself. Stretching often makes people feel antsy. Consider it a time to check in yourself and really feel how your body is doing and what it needs from you to come back to balance.s
Sciatica Stretch #1
Lay flat on your back. Bend your knees in and hug your knees to your chest. Breathe deeply several times all the way down to your lower back.
This stretch is one of the best for acute sciatic pain. Implement it for prevention as well, as it is very effective at gently opening the musculature throughout the hips and lower back.
Sciatica Stretch #2
Standing, spread your legs about 3-4 feet apart depending on how tall you are. Take a big inhale, then slowly bend over your hips until your head goes down toward the ground. Go as far down as you can without strain. Keep your legs as straight as possible. You should feel a pretty intense stretch through the inner thighs, buttocks, and into the feet. Hold the stretch for several breaths, then come up slowly.
This stretch should be done only when the pain is in a moderate or mild phase. If your sciatic pain is acute, this stretch may temporarily aggravate the condition.
Sciatica Stretch #3
Get in a push up position. Rock forward and bend one knee in until it touches the floor. You should feel a deep stretch throughout the hip on the side of the bent knee. Breathe deeply into any tension or discomfort you feel. Keep bringing your head closer to the floor if you need more of a stretch.
You can combine all 3 of these stretches for a total of 10 minutes per day for maximum benefit. Focus on stretch #1 for acute pain, and all 3 for nagging or chronic pain.
These stretches facilitate the opening of the hips and low back while promoting greater blood circulation throughout the lower extremities. A qualified yoga instructor can customize a stretching routine for your specific sciatic pattern. Keep in mind that this truly is one of the most pivotal steps for the long-term healing of the condition.
Stretching will complement and enhance any other treatment approach you’re following, whether it’s anti-imflammatories, acupuncture, chiropractic, massage, physiotherapy or other forms of exercise.
Many times, sciatica develops from chronic wear and tear on the body. This is usually due to a lack of stretching over many years. Any time you engage in strenuous activity, whether it’s hiking, jogging, or tennis, it’s very important to stretch on a regular basis to preserve the integrity of the spine and keep your muscles in a state of expansion rather than contraction.
Follow this stretching regimen and see for yourself how much progress you make! Most people are surprised by how much it helps.