Sciatica pain results when pressure is put on the sciatic nerve, which runs from the lower back down through the leg. It is the longest nerve in the human body and is therefore one of the most vulnerable to pressure or damage. Anyone who has ever experienced sciatica knows how painful it can be. Sometimes sciatica can become so painful that it interferes with your ability to work or perform daily tasks. Knowing some basic exercises for sciatica pain can help to relieve your discomfort and reduce your risk of further injury.
How Does Exercise Help?
If you are experiencing sciatica pain, moving about and performing exercises is probably the last thing you want to do. However, remaining idle after an onset of sciatica can actually make your situation worse. While it is helpful to rest for 1-2 days immediately following the onset of sciatica, after this rest period it is important to perform some gentle stretching and strengthening exercises to relieve your pain. Exercise helps to relieve pain by strengthening the muscles surrounding the sciatic nerve so that they help to support the back rather than putting pressure on the nerve itself.
Helpful Exercises to Relieve Pain
It can be difficult to convince yourself to get up and move around after experiencing sciatica pain. However, once you begin a basic regimen of short exercises, you will likely find that your pain begins to subside. Below is a list of useful exercises to condition your lower back and relieve sciatic nerve pain:
- Lie flat on the floor, face down. While keeping your hips on the floor, slowly prop yourself up on your elbows, with arms bent at 90 degrees and elbows positioned in line with your shoulders. Start with a short stretch duration of 5 to 10 seconds. As the stretch becomes easier, increase the stretch time to 20 or 30 seconds.
- While lying face down on the floor, clasp your hands behind your lower back. Gradually raise your chin and chest off of the floor, keeping your spine in a straight line with your eyes looking at the floor. Hold your head and chest off of the floor in this position for a few seconds, then slowly lower yourself back to the floor. As you become more flexible, aim for a longer hold time of 20 to 30 seconds.
- Lie on your back in a prone position, with your legs extended comfortably and your arms at your side. Slowly pull your knees towards your chest until you feel the stretch in your lower back. Hold 15 to 30 seconds, then gradually extend your knees back to the original position.
If you are experiencing pain from sciatica, consider seeking medical attention as soon as possible. The causes of sciatica can vary, and by identifying the cause of your pain you can begin an exercise regimen designed to treat your specific ailment. An experienced back pain professional can help to identify the source of your sciatica so that you can begin taking steps to heal and strengthen your body.
BeyondTheOfficeDoor.com specializes in the sale of ergonomic office furniture designed to increase comfort in your home or office. From specially designed keyboard trays to fully standing desk, our online site provides an extensive inventory of drafting chairs, ergonomic office chairs and ergohuman chairs so that you can properly outfit your work environment.
Permission for Reprint or Use Content on a Website: If you want to use one or more of our articles on your website, ezine, and/or in print, we typically will allow you to do so with our permission. Just email us a short description of where and what you plan to use. We will respond to you, usually within 1 business day, detailing our conditions of your reprint. If an article will appear on a website, it is required that all of our links stay intact. If the article will appear in print, it will usually require a mention of our website with toll free number and a quick excerpt of our company. If the article will appear in an email ezine a link and our toll free number will be required. That's usually all we need, but please note that permission is required!