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Stretching Out Sciatic Nerve Pain

Sciatica can be incredibly uncomfortable. My clients often describe it as a burning, shooting, or sharp pain. It may be felt close to the tailbone, further down near where the leg and booty meet, or sent radiating down the back of the leg. Wherever it is, it isn't pleasant.

One of the best ways to combat sciatic pain from home is through stretching. While there are a number of stretches or yoga postures that might prove helpful, the go-to that I consider the most effective is the 'figure four' stretch.

This stretch can be done while seated, (which is so convenient.) Begin by sitting towards the edge of your chair, with your back straight, feet on the floor. Now take the ankle of the leg that is most affected, and cross it over the knee of your other leg. This should form a figure four shape. The stretch can be intensified by leaning forward with your upper body. Alternatively or additionally, you can use your hand to press away the knee of the crossed leg.

Other tips that I recommend to clients experiencing sciatic pain include experimenting with heat or cold on the affected hip, paying attention to your sitting posture (by sitting on your sitz bones whenever possible, and using the beach ball hack when cushions make that difficult), and seeing a chiropractor, in addition to receiving regular massage therapy.

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