Exercises and Stretches to ease Sciatica pain, from an PT - Hospital for Special Surgery

There are two kinds of sciatica one being mechanical, where something such as a bone spur or herniated disc pushes onto the nerve as well as inflammatory, when swelling caused by an injury, pregnancy, or another condition is putting the pressure.

If you’ve been experiencing symptoms for longer than a week or two, it’s a great idea to see your doctor examine you immediately, advises Brian Jones, PT, DPT, OCS, CSCS Physical therapist in HSS Rehabilitation and Performance in Brooklyn. “Whether it’s your first experience with sciatica or if you’ve been through previously but it’s almost certain that it’s not the last time you experience it,” he says. “So it’s extremely beneficial to have information and know how to manage it.”

6 Steps to Help Ease Sciatica

Treatment and prevention of mild sciatica appear identical. “Try at your very best to stay moving and remain fit. Be sure that your body is able to take what you put it through on a regular routine basis” Jones says. “If you’re working in an occupation that requires a lot of intensity, it is having enough strength and flexibility in your knees and hips to perform your job with no injuries.” For other people it could mean gaining the strength as well as balance, flexibility, and aerobic endurance to be able to run around with your grandkids or kids as well as to do some heavy yardwork, or go on a trip that is active.

Maintaining an active lifestyle will help reduce the pain of sciatica in the event that it returns, Jones says, as is doing gentle exercises which target the area affected. The six movements below on your home floor.

A few quick reminders

  • Do this 8-10 times (per exercise, or for each side of your body).
  • It’s best to practice them at least once each week, but you can perform them each day if it feels good.
  • Don’t be a snorer! Concentrate on breathing deeply, letting your lungs fill up while you do each movement. If you’re unsure of how to breathe in a deep way, go to the Glute Bridge pose , and then place your hands across your stomach, and concentrate on breathing so that your hands are raised and lowered.
  • Keep in mind that these workouts (or any other movements you perform) should not cause further pain, according to Jones. If they do, you should stop immediately.

Glute Bridge

  1. Relax lying on the back and bend your knees, and feet laid flat on the ground with your hips spaced. Relax your arms on your sides with straight with your palms facing down.
  2. Intensify your core and draw the belly button towards your spine.
  3. Place your arms on the floor to support them and work your heels to the side by lifting your hips to the ceiling while squeezing your glutes. The aim is to get your body to create straight lines from your knees to the head, with a slight arching in your lower back.
  4. Keep it for 5 to 30 seconds. Slowly lower. This is one rep.

Stretching your knees in a seated position

  1. Lay lying on the back and keep your legs stretched out. Be careful not to bend your back.
  2. Slowly, bring your knee towards your chest and hold it using the hands (behind or above your knee).
  3. You can gently pull on your knee to feel a slight stretching of the hips, lower spine as well as your hip.
  4. Keep it for 5 to 30 seconds. Slowly lower. It’s only one rep.


  1. You can lie on your side with your knees bent. Place your lower arm underneath your head and support it.
  2. Engage your core and draw the belly button of your stomach towards your spine.
  3. While keeping your feet together Keep your feet together, and slowly raise your top kneeand open your legs as the clamshell is opened. Utilize your upper arm to stabilize yourself to ensure you don’t fall on your back.
  4. Keep it for 5 to 30 seconds. Slowly lower. This is one rep.


  1. Begin with all-fours. Make sure your hands are below your shoulders and that your knees are directly beneath your hips.
  2. Engage your core and draw from your belly button towards your spine. Look forward and slightly downwards (about 1 foot ahead of your palms) to ensure that you don’t put stress on your neck.
  3. Straighten your left arm ahead of you, and then move your left leg straight in front of you. (You can perform this at the same time , or one at a time and the next.) Be sure to keep them aligned in relation to your back. (Doing this in front of mirrors can help you check your posture.)
  4. Take a moment to rest, then lower your hands and lower your leg. Make sure your back remains straight, not being hunched or sagging. Check your posture to determine if your neck is causing you pain.
  5. Repeat the exercise with the second arm and leg. One rep is enough.

Cobra Stretch

  1. Lay on your stomach and place your hands underneath your shoulders. Keep your elbows into your body.
  2. Inhale and press your palms. Slowly extend your arms while lifting your chest, head and shoulders. Keep your elbows in a bent position and keep your head elevated throughout the day.
  3. To tighten your muscles, you must work your back (abs as well as back) as well as your legs.
  4. For 30 seconds, hold the position. Slowly lower. It’s only one rep.

Stretching a child’s pose

  1. Begin on all fours like the Bird-Dog.
  2. Keep your knees in place while you lower them backwards by bringing your hips closer to your heels. Let your arms extend until they’re stretched outwards, or rest them on your body in a relaxed position. Your forehead should rest on the floor.
  3. Relax deeper into the stretch and allow your shoulders to ease completely and transferring your weight to your thighs and buttocks. Do not fret if your butt isn’t touching your heels.
  4. Pause, breathing deeply. Imagine the tension releasing from your body, specifically on your back. buttocks.
  5. Do this for five minutes or as long you’d want. It’s not necessary to repeat the move However, you can do it do it if it feels comfortable to you.

When do you need to see a doctor for Sciatica

Jones says that specific sciatica-like symptoms should be taken to urgent medical attention. This includes chills, fevers and night sweats that may indicate the presence of an infection. More dangerous are extreme symptoms of pain, numbness or weakening of the area and/or changes in bladder and the bowel function. These could be symptoms of a rare disorder called cauda equina syndrome. It can cause permanent damage if it is not addressed immediately.

Mild sciatica The condition, on the other hand, can disappear all on its own, typically by taking rest and cold packs, or heating pads, as well as anti-inflammatory drugs. But, Jones says it’s a ideal idea to have it evaluated. “As is the norm when it comes to health concerns the earlier you address sciatica as it is, the more likely you’re to experience a favorable result,” he says. You might also be able to stop it from becoming a chronic issue, or learn to get it out of the bud in the event that it occurs again.

Jones recommends that you consult physical therapists who can evaluate the symptoms you are experiencing and suggest methods and exercises to help alleviate the discomfort. If physical therapy fails to do the trick , or you require some other type of treatment then your PT can provide an appointment with an sciatica specialist.