Best Stretches For Sciatica
Sciatica is a painful condition in which the sciatic nerve becomes inflamed or irritated. The pain is usually felt in the lower back and extends to the thighs. In severe cases, it evens affects the legs, feet, and toes. It’s not an illness in itself and usually hints at some other underlying condition like spondylolisthesis and other spine-related issues. An unhealthy lifestyle that lacks much physical activity can also trigger back pain and result in this condition.
Here are 5 Stretches to relieve Sciatica pain:
Stretch 1: Knee to Chest
- Lie on your back and relax your neck and shoulders in order to avoid injury.
- Raise your bent knee towards the chest and hold the position for 30 seconds. Repeat the movement 3 times for each knee.
- A variation of this exercise is one where both knees are hugged at the same time.
This exercise can help in restoring flexibility and also relieves pain caused due to inflammation of the sciatic nerve or any other spine issue. It is a great stretch for relieving tension in the lower back muscles.
Stretch 2: Mobilizing Stretch
- Lie flat on your back and bend your knee, one at a time.
- Raise the bent knee towards the chest and slowly straighten out the leg.
- Do not push your lower back towards the ground as it can cause injury.
- Hold the stretch for 20 to 30 seconds.
- Repeat the movement on each leg 3 times.
This is another impactful stretch for irritated nerves. It can ease the pain caused due to a compressed sciatic nerve.
Stretch 3: Gluteal Stretch
- Lie on a flat surface with your back against the ground.
- Now bend your left leg at a right angle to the chest.
- Now raise the right leg and put the right foot on the left thigh.
- Now with the help of your hands or a towel, pull the left thigh towards the chest. Try to keep your lower spine on the ground and hold the stretch for 20 to 30 seconds.
- Repeat 3 times on each leg.
The glutes can sometimes tighten up and cause discomfort. This stretch is great for relieving tension in those muscles.
Stretch 4: Back Extension
- Lie on the mat with your face towards the ground.
- Now by using your hands lift your torso upwards.
- Your back should be slightly arched and keep the neck straight.
- Hold this position for 10 seconds.
- Now go back to the initial pose and repeat the stretch 5 times.
This stretch is not only great for strengthening the lower back but will also release any built-up tension due to intense physical activity or spine problems.
Stretching has proven to be extremely helpful in relieving sciatica pain and also flexibility in general. However, make sure that your body is relaxed in order to prevent tearing of the muscles. Deep breathing and listening to one’s body are very important. Be aware of your limits and do not push yourself too much. If you feel pain during stretching, release the stretch immediately.