Sciatica pain is a common condition. The sciatica nerve starts in the glut muscles and runs down the back of the leg. Sciatica pain can be localized to the butt/hip/low back region or it can travel down the hamstring and calf. Severe sciatica can cause numbing and tingling in the foot.
Sciatica can occur independently of other issues, though most often it occurs with disc injury, sports-related impact injuries or even pregnancy.
The following are some useful exercises that I consider "tried and true" to help both the incidence and prevention of sciatica pain.
- Lie supine, knees bent. Place your feet wider than hip distant apart. Drop your knees to the right. Place the right outside on the left knee and gently push down. Take your left arm back behind you along the side of the face and let it rest on the floor. Breath into your left side and feel your hip stretch and drop down towards the floor. Hold for at least 30 seconds. Repeat on the other side.
Supine Hip Stretch
-Lie on your back close to a wall, chair or exercise ball. Place the right foot on the wall, chair, etc and cross the left foot over the right knee. Rock from side to side to move the stretch more in the tight areas of the hip. Hold for at least 30 seconds. Repeat on the other side
-Seated on your bottom stretch the right leg out in front of you. Pull the left foot in towards your right inner thigh. While folding forward gently twist toward the right to stretch your right hamstring and your left low back. If you flex the foot the stretch in the back of the leg will increase, conversely pointing the foot will elevate the stretch. Hold for at least 30 seconds. Repeat on the other side.
Half Firelog Pose
Seated on your bottom stretch the right leg forward. Bend the left knee and rest the left foot across the right thigh. Let the left knee drop towards the floor. Fold forward and stretch. Hold for at least 30 seconds. Repeat on the other side.