The sciatic nerve is the widest and longest nerve in your body which runs from your lower spine and reaches both of your legs and ends in each foot. If you are suffering from sciatica, there will be pain and numbness caused by inflammation or compression of the sciatic nerve.
There are a few exercises you can do at home that will specifically target the important areas that surround the sciatic nerve that will strengthen and stretch the muscles affecting your pain. Performing these exercises will reduce your pain and can also help in preventing future problems or even preventing surgery later on in your life.
Here are some of the best stretches and exercises you can perform at home to relieve your sciatica pain. These exercises will relax your lower back, legs, buttocks, and pelvic floor which encourages these areas to strengthen. For the best sciatica pain relieving results, repeat these exercises multiple times every day, or until your pain is gone.
**Please note: Much like with every other exercise, if you can’t perform a stretch due to pain, do not continue and take a break. If the pain gets worse, seek immediate professional medical advice.**
To perform this stretch, start by lying on your back. This stretch will relax your whole back and is great for getting rid of your sciatica pain. Here is how you perform the complete back stretch:
- Bring both of your knees up to your chest
- Hug your legs at the knees and relax
- Do not try to crack your back, only go far enough to relax your back
Stretch your lower back
When you stretch your lower back, the goal is to target and relax the middle and lower parts of your back. Here is a great way to stretch your lower back:
- Lie flat on your back, then bend one knee to a 90-degree angle. Keep your foot on the floor
- Let your knee drop gently to the opposite side of your body while you let your hips twist at the same time
- Use your foot on the floor as support and keep your back and hips flat
- Repeat this exercise on both sides for 10-20 seconds each side
When you perform this stretch, you will be relieving tension and stress from your pelvic floor and buttocks. Here is how to perform the pretzel stretch:
- While your back is flat on the ground, bend both knees while keeping both feet planted on the floor
- Bring your right ankle over your left knee
- Pull your left thigh back toward your body slowly
Single leg lift and stretch
If you are a Pilates fan, you will be familiar with this exercise. The single leg lift and stretch will help give strength to your core and hip flexors while stretching your hips and buttocks. Here is how to perform the single leg lift and stretch:
- Lying on the floor with your back flat, lift one leg to a 90-degree angle while you support your thigh with both hands
- Keep your foot parallel to the floor
- Lift your other leg a few inches off the ground with your foot at 90 degrees
- Repeat the lift 12 to 15 times, then switch legs
If you have sciatica and you live in Oakville, getting chiropractic care while performing these exercises will relieve your pain in no time! Give us a call today at 905-257-5628 to book your appointment!