Sciatica pain is a painful condition that can affect your day-to-day life. In fact, sometimes the intensity of the pain is so much that patients find it difficult to even get up from the couch. The burning sensation shoots up from the buttocks and goes all the way down to the legs.
That being said, people can always consult doctors to alleviate the pain. From medications to surgery, there are a number of treatment options for sciatica pain. In case your pain is not too much and you are at the starting stage, you can also perform exercises to relieve sciatica pain.
A simple workout at home can strengthen the weak muscles and relieve the pressure from sciatic nerve. All you need to do is perform sciatica exercises on a regular basis and you will gradually notice the results.
To help you with this, we have listed down a few of the best sciatica treatment exercises to try. But before that, let us learn a bit more about sciatica.
What is Sciatica?
Sciatica is a type of pain that begins in the sciatic nerve – the longest and widest nerves in the body. It runs from the lower back through the hips and branches down to each leg. The pain usually occurs when the nerve gets pressed due to herniated disc or a bone spur in the spine.
Usually, it affects one leg. You may experience a radiating pain near the butt, back of the legs and feet when it happens.
Top 3 Exercises To Relieve Sciatica
Sciatica exercises target your lower back and help in stretching the muscles. You can easily try this sciatica pain treatment at home. However, do consult your doctor before beginning any of the sciatica pain exercises. They can suggest if your condition allows you to practice these exercises and if yes, then which sciatica treatment exercises are ideal for you.
For now, we have jotted down some of the top sciatica exercises people can try to relieve the pain. There is also a step-by-step guide so that you can start performing them soon.
- Knee-to-chest Exercise
If you want to perform sciatica exercises in bed, this one is a great option. Though it is traditionally done on a mat, you can use a bed. It relaxes your lower leg and back muscles to minimize the pressure on sciatic nerve. Here’s how you can perform it:
- Lie flat on your back and place a towel or a pillow under your head for support.
- Now, slowly bend both your knees.
- Inhale and bring your left knee towards your and grasp it with both hands. Gently pull the left knee towards the chest.
- Hold this pose for 10 minutes. Make sure you take deep breaths.
- Repeat on the right leg.
- Once you have done this stretching 10 times on each side, bring both knees towards the chest. Again, hold them for at least 10 minutes.
- Do this 5 times for sciatica pain treatment.
- Standing Hamstring Stretch
As the name suggests, this is one of those sciatica exercises that focus on easing pain in the hamstring. To do a standing hamstring stretch, you need a bench or a chair. If that is not available, you can just use stairs too for such exercises for sciatica leg pain. Here’s the step-by-step guide you can follow:
- Start by placing your right foot on an elevated surface such as chair or step on a staircase at or below your hip level. Flex your foot so that your toes and leg are straight. In case you feel too much pain, you can bend your knee slightly.
- Now, slowly bend your body forward toward your foot. As you keep on bending, you will experience a deeper stretch. However, do not push too hard that it becomes painful.
- Release the hip of your right leg downward. If you need any help to ease your hip down, use a yoga strap or long exercise band.
- Hold for at least 30 seconds, then repeat on the left side.
- Pelvic Tilt Exercise
From hamstrings, now we will learn one of the best sciatica pain relief exercises that focus on lower back, glutes, and abdominal muscles. Also, just like knee-to-chest exercise, you can also perform pelvic tilt if you wish to perform sciatica exercises in bed. Here’s how:
- Lie on your back and bend your legs.
- Your arms should be by your side.
- Now, tighten your stomach muscles and press your back into the floor.
- Tilt the hips and pelvis slightly upward. It looks like glute bridges too. Stay in this position and focus on the breath for a few seconds.
- Release the position and relax.
- Try to do at least 10 repetitions.
Other than these, you can also perform the following sciatica pain exercises:
- Reclining Pigeon Pose: This may come under stretching exercises for sciatica but it is a yoga pose that helps in opening up the hips through stretching. If you have just started sciatica pain treatment at home, exercises like these should be in your workout routine.
- Basic Seated Stretch: When it comes to stretching exercises for sciatica, you just cannot ignore this one. This helps in stretching your back, glutes, and also your spine.
- Prone Leg Raise: Sciatica exercises are not just about relieving pain. They can also help in strengthening the muscles so that they are less vulnerable to strain and injuries. Prone leg raise is one of such sciatica pain relief exercises that alleviate the pain while strengthening your lower back. You can try it while lying down.
- Standing Piriformis Stretch: If your pain is higher in leg, try standing piriformis stretch. This is among the most effective exercises for sciatica leg pain. It also engages your buttocks and abdominal muscles.
- Sitting Spinal Stretch: Sciatica pain begins from spine. That’s why it is important that when you start sciatica pain treatment at home, exercises that stretch your spine should be a part of your workout. A sitting spinal stretch helps in that. It can create a space in spine that relives pressure on the sciatic nerve.
Sciatica pain changes your life, and that’s not for the better. If you don’t treat it in time, the condition can become even worse, making it difficult to perform the simplest of tasks. So, wait no more and try these sciatica exercises. In addition, also get online doctor consultation to learn more about the treatment process.
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