The sciatic nerve is the largest in the human body. It can be found in the lower spine area and goes through the buttock and thigh area. It connects the spinal cord with the leg and the foot. It is probably irritated because of its location, which can make it constrict and become inflamed. When this occurs, people feel pain. The inflammation of the sciatic nerve may be due to extreme pressure brought about by your daily activities. Still, there are also moments when the irritation is because of an injury or swelling of the muscles.
People may suffer hip and lower back pain when their sciatic nerve is irritated. The pain usually spreads to the back area. The pain can sometimes be too much that it would already affect people’s overall routine.
10 Stretches Help Relieve Sciatica, Hip, and Back Pain
Here are ten easy exercises to help you relieve sciatica, hip, and back pain. These are other tips to remember:
- You should go beyond your capabilities.
- If you are not comfortable, do not push through with it.
- Only stay within the limits of what your doctor has prescribed.
Some people make the mistake of assuming that the exercises they have to do are similar to the method they will follow to build their muscles. This time, you have to stay pain-free while you are doing your many exercises. This is the only way that you can heal yourself from sciatica pain.
If you feel pain after the exercises and stretches, let your doctor know so you can choose lighter exercises and stretches instead. You should also get the signal from your spine specialist to be sure.
Standing Piriformis Stretch
Standing Piriformis Stretch is a useful exercise to get rid of the pain brought about by sciatica.
- Place the affected leg (the one in pain) over the other leg.
- Slowly lower your hips toward the ground. Make sure that you will maintain a 45-degree angle.
- Bend your standing knee as you see fit.
- Lean forward using your torso while you extend your arms. Make sure that your arms are parallel to the ground. Your spine should be kept straight throughout the process.
- Hold for about a minute.
- Switch the legs.
To make this exercise easier, you may stand up against the wall to keep your balance. You can use the wall as your support to make the stretch easier.
This is one of the exercises you can do if you usually feel pain in your leg. It would help if you also had a series of other leg exercises to make it effective.
- Sit on the floor and stretch your legs. You can try it as far as you can.
- Tilt your torso toward the direction of the ground. Your hands should be placed on the floor while doing this stretch.
- Slowly try to place your elbows on the ground. You can try to reach as many as you can. You can try placing your elbows on the ground, but do not push yourself to do s if you cannot do it.
- If you feel any pain, make some adjustments to the stretch that you are making.
- Hold for about 10 – 20 seconds, depending on whether you are feeling pain.
Some people do other leg exercises BEFORE doing this particular exercise. Get to know the different activities you can do to be sure.
Side-Lying Clam Exercise
You would like to do a stretching exercise that can effectively eliminate the pain in your hip. This can be good for your needs.
- Depending on the area that hurts, you must lie on one side. The affected area should not be on the floor.
- Make sure that your legs are placed backward. One foot should be placed over the other so the legs can parallel each other.
- Your spine should still be kept straight and should not bend, or you may end up hurting yourself.
- The hip that is affected should be placed over the other so it can be guided appropriately.
- Raise the knee upwards.
- Make sure the rest of your body is still in its original position.
- Return the knee to the original position.
- You can do this exercise 15 times.
Always keep track of the pain that you are feeling. When you are feeling pain, this means that you are pushing yourself too hard.
Supine Piriformis Side Stretch
It would help if you stretched the sides of your body so that the pressure will not be too bad on your hips and your back. This side stretch may be one of the exercises you have to do.
- You can lie on the mat you have set up on the floor. This will keep you from slipping while stretching.
- Make sure your back is straight on the ground and your legs flat.
- The affected leg should be bent upward and placed on the external portion of your other leg.
- Try to pull on the knee while it is bent across your body. You will begin to feel a stretch. The moment that it is painful stops.
- Keep your shoulders and your hips on the ground while you are doing the stretching.
- You need to keep this position for about 30 seconds. It would help if you repeated this exercise three times to get the desired results.
You would like to eliminate the pain brought about by your sciatica condition. If you answer yes, then this is one of the exercises that you should try.
- You can sit on a chair and make sure that you are comfortable.
- Cross the affected leg over your other leg.
- Move your chest slightly forward but ensure that your spine remains straight.
- Hold this position during deep breathing. Make sure that you are not in any pain.
- You can hold the position for about half a minute.
- Repeat the same process with your other leg.
Supine Piriformis Stretch
This stretching exercise should be a part of the exercises you are going to do.
- Lie down, and once you are comfortable, you can raise your knees and bend them upward.
- The affected leg should be placed on the other leg.
- You can bend it, so it is almost on your chest area.
- Hold on to your knee with the opposite hand and try to pull it towards your shoulder area. You will start to feel a stretch.
- Hold that position for half a minute before releasing.
If you do not feel a stretch when pulling your ankle towards your shoulders, you may try to stretch it further. The moment that you feel a pinch on the front portion of your thigh, you should stop.
Outer Hip Piriformis Stretch
Some people feel this stretch is a bit ambitious because it is not easy. You can do this if you have been doing other stretches for quite some time.
- Lie down on your back and bend your knee towards the back of your other knee.
- Your foot should be behind your other knee, and your knee should be touching the ground.
- The hand should be placed on the side where you have placed your knee. It would depend on whether your affected knee is your left or right.
- Raise your other arm while keeping the hand on the knee.
- The raised arm should be placed slowly toward the opposite direction of the knee.
- Keep that position for about 20 seconds.
- Switch and do the same process for your other knee.
- Go back to your original position and stretch both legs. You must also place your bended knees over your chest using your hands.
Remember that you should only do a stretch that is comfortable for you. Pushing yourself too much will not achieve anything but pain.
Inner Thigh Stretch
This is an easy stretch that you can do with the other exercises that are listed here.
- Sit down on the ground. You can have a mat underneath if you want to feel more comfortable.
- Place your feet’ soles in front of your pelvis area.
- Hold your left ankle with your right hand and your right ankle with your left hand.
- Push downward with your knees as if you would like to touch the ground while sitting down.
- If you start to feel pain, back up a bit.
- Hold the position for about half a minute.
- You may need to flutter your legs, too, for 30 seconds.
You can ask your physical therapist how to do a deeper stretch if this stretch is not working for you anymore.
Hip Extension Stretch
This stretching exercise will require you to use your exercise mat. If you do not have one, it is best to invest in this now.
- It would help if you faced the ground on all fours.
- Make sure that your hands are in line with your shoulders.
- Your weight should be a bit off your affected leg. Raise your leg upwards, ensuring that your knees are bent with the toes facing the ceiling.
- You can lower your leg slowly as if returning to the first position.
- Do this stretch 15 times.
You need to ensure that you will not feel any pain while doing this exercise, so you will be on your way to improving your condition.
This stretching exercise can improve your piriformis muscle so that it will be stronger. You can also lessen the back pain you are feeling.
- Your hands and your knees should be placed on the ground.
- You need to place the affected leg underneath your trunk. It should be placed on the opposite side while the knee is put towards the shoulder area.
- Slowly lower your head until your forehead touches the ground.
- You may need to support yourself using your arms and forearms.
- The other leg should be stretched out behind you while doing this stretching exercise.
- Hold the position for about 30 seconds before reverting to your usual position.
- Do this about three times.
These exercises can help you heal from sciatica at the soonest possible time. Follow the tips and advice of medical professionals to be sure of what you will get.