First off, what is sciatica? Simply put, it’s a pain that radiates along the path of the sciatic nerve. The sciatic nerve runs from your low back to your buttock and down the back of your thigh and calf.
With the sciatic nerve being the longest and largest nerve in the body, you can imagine how debilitating it would be to have it aggravated.
Of course, manual therapy can help with sciatica pain relief but when you couple treatments with these three at home exercises, your sciatic nerve won’t be pissed off anymore.
1. Sit comfortably in a chair and bring your affected leg up with the knee extended
2. Plantarflex your foot (point your toes down) and simultaneously flex your head forward (bring your chin to your chest). Hold this position for 3 seconds.
3. Next, dorsiflex your foot (point your toes up) and simultaneously extend your head backward (look up to the ceiling). Hold this position for 3 seconds.
4. Transition through each step smoothly and slowly
5. Steps “b to c” count as one repetition. Perform 8 reps, 3 times a day
1. Laying comfortably on your back, bring your affected leg toward your torso and lay it across the unaffected leg, as shown in the photo
2. Pull the unaffected leg toward you and simultaneously push the affected leg away from you
3. Hold the stretch for 30 seconds, 3 reps, 3 times a day
1. Lay on your stomach with your arms bent and hands by your ears
2. Gently push up onto your forearms and extend your low back
3. To take it one step further, push up onto your hands while keeping your pelvis glued to the floor as best you can (sloppy push-up), and again further extending your low back
4. Hold for 10 seconds, 6 reps, 3 times a day
As always, take it easy and be cautious with the sciatica exercises. You want to calm the sciatic nerve down, not irritate it even more. You will feel some discomfort with these exercises, but hey… no pain, no gain right? That being said, work within your own tolerance and stop any of these exercises if the pain worsens.