Of all the different pain-inducing conditions that billions of people around the world suffer from, very few are as irritating as sciatica. For many sciatica patients, the condition will present with few if any symptoms. Others however will feel mild to severe back and leg pain that may also include numbness and tingling.
In some cases sciatica pain goes away and comes back, and goes away again. In others however, the pain persists for a long time. The reason sciatica comes and goes for most patients is that traditional treatments focus on treating individual symptoms rather than the root of the problem. Driving classes won’t treat the problem of driving under the influence, so what good does it do?
While treatments such as cortisone injections, pain medication, heat treatments and even ultrasound can provide temporary relief from pain, inflammation and limited mobility, they do not focus on the problem that caused the compression on the sciatic nerve.
Thus, the vicious cycle continues; you feel pain, take a few pills and use far infrared heat and the pain subsides…for a while. Then it comes back and you’re starting the ineffective treatments all over again.
The only thing you’ve done is spent money and wasted time, only to still have a painful case of sciatica to deal with.
There are many underlying conditions that can place pressure on the sciatic nerve and that is what your treatment should be focusing on. Of course you should use temporary measures to allow you a modicum of relief while you undergo ongoing treatments, but know that these are just stop-gap measures.
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Whether you suffer from piriformis syndrome, a herniated disc, spinal stenosis, or spondylolisthesis; each of these symptoms can cause pressure on the sciatic nerve. While these conditions are mostly different, the one commonality they do share is that they aggravated by an imbalance of muscles. Muscle imbalances occur when one side of an opposing muscle is overdeveloped and the other is underdeveloped.
Muscle imbalances occur in all of us, but some people experience more extreme imbalances than others do and this is what leads to severe problems such as sciatica. A severe imbalance must be treated in order to relieve the pain of sciatica, but it might also help you find relief for the underlying cause of your sciatica.
So what do you do for quick leg pain relief? The answer is simple: stretch.
Stretching has been proven effective as part of muscle balance therapy because it helps relieve tension from the muscles so they are able to relax. When the muscles are relaxed, the entire body is relaxes and it alleviates the pain from the pinched nerve. Stretching is a light form of exercise than helps the weakened muscles.
Try this simple stretch while you watch the video below.
If you tried this stretch you can probably already feel a slight relief in leg pain. If you believe you may have a muscle imbalance, consult with a physical therapist to formulate a stretching and exercise regimen to relieve the pain. There are many stretches that can relieve spinal pressure and loosen tight muscles.
Your best chances of leg pain relief and treating the underlying causes of sciatic pain is physical therapy. Many patients simply believe that stretching at home on an exercise mat is sufficient but the truth is that the many different causes of leg pain may require stretches that target different parts of the problem.
For example just because you have pain in your leg, doesn’t mean the problem isn’t originating in your neck, back or shoulders. Again, the important stretches will target symptoms as well as underlying causes. This is the only way to ensure long-term relief.
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Written By: Updated: January 21,2011
8 thoughts on “Leg Pain Relief With Easy Sciatica Stretches”
I have had pain in my hip joints when walking in the shoping centres. It was so bad that I had to walk with both my hands trying to keep the pain away. After trying the sciatica stretch for two days only I had no more pain in my hip joints. Thanks a lot for your video’s.
I have been teaching variations of this stretch for years we called it +4 to remind clients the legs cross and make the number 4. I tried the cross the mid line and it proved the my quadratus femoris was tight. Thank you for the reminder. I will keep referring clients to you.
I have Sciatica – Piriformis Syndrome. I was told by my Phsyiatrist as well as my Trainer at Snap Fitness Center =YOU NEVER SIT ON ANYTHING HARD > FLOOR > CHAIR >CAR/TOILET SEAT. I carry a soft cushion w/me at all times. My Trainer works at the Snap Fitness Center has set up a program for me work on stretching my Piriformis Muscle to keep the muscle from pressing on the Sciatica nerve. Dan is very knowledgeable about my condition. I go 2 x’s a week and do stretches in my apartment.has decrease my pain in my butt.
How can I strengthen my lower back muscles.
Thanks for this video.
I am a very active 40 yr old male and have suffered from Siatica pain since i was 21 playing volleyball one day.
I now play golf habitually and have recently had extreme pain down from my hip into my ankle. I see a Chiropractor and get some relief. He has been telling me it is caused by my hips and to stretch. And i kinda have become apathetic because i thought i had a deformity that Im not going to be able to change… But I just tried the stretch and variations and noticed immediate relief of some pain and a solid feeling of strength again walking around. Thank you for the knowledge on Piriformis Syndrome, it seems to be my condition and i look forward to handling it through your techniques.
Question? So what stretches help Plantar Fasciitis?
I understand that performing this stretch does definitely relieve some tension, but what do you do if it’s so painful to get into the stretching potion, let alone actually perform the exercise?
Eliza, Plantar Fasciitis is a complex issue and requires more then just stretches to address the root cause and also help resolve the symptoms as well as the physical limitations…
I can only tell you how I help people with Plantar Fasciitis, in my work…
1. The use of natural anti-inflammatory Systemic enzymes, Fish Oil, homeopathic pain creams, to include both use of Heat and Cold for inflammation
2. The use of compression Stockings, wear to tolerance.
3. The use of neutral shoe inserts, to minimize any foot instability
4. The use of 30 min weekly massage from foot to just above the knee
5. Adjustment suggestions in the frequency, intensity and duration of physical activity
6. Stretches and Exercises to minimize any physical imbalances in Strength and Range of motion
Do all of those and there is no way you can not benefit…