Exercises to Prevent Sciatica - N8 Family Chiropractic

Exercises to Prevent Sciatica

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Sciatica is a pain that shoots down the back of your leg and it can be caused by sitting for too long. There are some exercises to help alleviate sciatica, but you should consult with your doctor before starting these exercises. This article will share different exercises that may help to:

  • Subside the symptoms on their own.
  • Avoid or reduce medication intake whenever possible.
  • The condition can be relieved more effectively and for longer periods when it flares up.

Here are 6 exercises you can do at home:

  • Sciatica stretch
  • Knee-to-Chest-exercise
  • Standing Hamstring stretch 
  • Pelvic Tilt exercise
  • Glute Bridges
  • Lying Deep Gluteal Stretch

Sciatica Stretch

This type of exercise is for sciatic leg pain which is intended to relieve pressure on the sciatic nerve.

Step 1: Lie on your stomach.

Step 2: Position the elbows under the shoulders while placing the hands flat on the floor.

Step 3: Place the forearms flat or close to flat on the floor next to the chest area.

Step 4: Lift the chest to arch the back enough to extend the spine from the neck to the tailbone. Hold for 30 seconds.

Step 5: Repeat two times.

Knee-to-Chest Exercise

This exercise is a simple stretch that targets the lower buttock and upper thigh area.

Step 1: Start by lying on your back with your legs bent and your feet flat on the floor. 

Step 2: Place one knee on the chest and the other foot on the floor. 

Step 3: Hold the lower back straight for up to 30 seconds, while pressing the lower back into the floor.

Step 4: Then repeat the steps on the other side.

Try for 2 to 4 repetitions on each side. To make this exercise even more challenging, lift one leg straight up to the chest while resting it on your other knee. You can also bring both knees into the chest at once for an extra challenge.

Standing Hamstring Stretch

Exercise with care. Hold on to something if needed, and don’t overstretch.

Step 1: Stand straight up and place one foot on a slightly higher surface, like the edge of a stair step.

Step 2: Straighten the leg on the step and point the toes upwards. 

Step 3: Lean slightly forward with your back straight.

Step 4: Hold it for 20 to 30 seconds. And don’t forget to breathe.

Step 5: Repeat with the other leg.

Try this stretching exercise for 2 to 3 repetitions with each leg. 

Lying Deep Gluteal Stretch

Exercises like this may need to be modified slightly if you are inflexible.

Step 1: Lie down on your back with your legs bent. elevate your right ankle, and rest it on your left knee. 

Step 2: Using your two hands, put your fingers behind your left thigh and gently pull it toward you. Keep the back of your head on the floor while doing this exercise to avoid any injuries that may arise from poor posture or incorrect form.

Step 3: Hold for 20 to 30 seconds.

Step 4: Repeat with the other leg. 

Elevating your head slightly with a book or firm cushion under it, you can loop a towel around the thigh and use it to pull your thigh towards yourself. Do 2 to 3 repetitions with each leg.

Pelvic Tilt Exercise

This is another tricky but simple exercise that can help sciatic pain.

This is a good way to reduce the pressure on your nerve and keep it healthy for as long as possible, which helps you avoid surgery in some cases by lessening the damage and keeping inflammation.

Step 1:  Lie on your back with your legs bent and arms by your side.

Step 2: Tighten your stomach muscles, press the back into the floor, rock hip and pelvis slightly upwards.   

Step 3: Hold this position while picturing out making your belly button touch your backbone. Don’t forget to breathe. 

Step 4: Release after a few seconds. Then repeat.

Step 5: Try for 8 to 12 repetitions.

Glute Bridges

The glutes are the muscles in your buttocks that, if they’re too tight, can press on the sciatic nerve.

Step 1: Lie on your back, casually resting with knees bent. The feet should be about shoulder-width apart and hands relaxed at sides.

Step 2: Pushing through the heels, lift your hips until your body forms a straight line from knees to shoulders.

Step 3: Hold the position for a few seconds.

Step 4: Gently lower hips to the floor. Then repeat.

Good form is important for this exercise. Avoid arching or rounding the back. Try for 2 or 3 sets of 8 to 10 repetitions.

Precautions to be taken before considering the exercises above:

Doing exercises for sciatica doesn’t have to be a chore. Focusing on finding ones that work is more important than ramping up the difficulty, and consistency with your program is key. However, if you experience increased pain after exercising it’s best to see your doctor right away!


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Exercises to Prevent Sciatica
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