Exercise for sciatic pain releif


LC Sep 02 2016
Sciatica is the symptom caused by irritation to the sciatic nerve. The sciatic nerve runs from your lower back/pelvis, through your performs muscle, down the back of your leg and ending in your foot. 


  • Sharp, shooting or burning pain (down the back of your leg towards your foot) 
  • Lower back and buttock pain
  • Tingling sensation / Pins and needles
  • Numbness
  • Loss of muscle power
  • Increased pain with sneezing, coughing or prolonged postures


  • Herniated disc
  • Injury
  • Piriformis syndrome
  • Prolonged poor posture 
  • Incorrect lifting techniques
  • Spinal stenosis
  • Infection
  • Growth


  • Apply ice to the area for 15-20 minutes every few hours. Do this for the first 1-5 days. Ice can also be used as an effective pain relief after this time. 
  • Apply heat after the first 3-5days
  • Gentle movements and changing your position every 15-20 minutes
  • Physiotherapy
  • GP for pain medications
  • Pilates after pain has resolved to prevent future episode
  • Surgery in more extreme and rare cases

*if you have loss of sensation around your genitals to your buttock and (/or) experience loss of bladder or bowel control you must call 999 to seek immediate medical attention. This could indicate a condition called cauda equina. 

Things to avoid 

  • Prolonged postures 
  • Bed rest (maximum 24-48 hours bed rest in very acute painful cases) 
  • Strength training as the pain will inhibit your core muscles and decrease muscle support (this can resume gradually after you have been pain free for 3 days or more)
  • Any aggravating activity
  • Heavy lifting
  • Impact activities e.g. running 
  • Over stretching your hamstring muscle 

General sciatic pain relief exercices 

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