Piriformis Stretches for Sciatic Pain

February 13, 2019

Piriformis Stretches: A Possible Easy Solution to Your Sciatica Pain


In as much as 22% of the population, the sciatic nerve pierces the piriformis muscle.


Because of this, a trauma to the buttocks causing muscle spasms or inflammation could compress the sciatic nerve. This can cause pain which generally starts in the buttocks and can be severe enough to extend all the way down your leg.


Luckily, if you are one of these people there are a few simple stretches that can get you on track to healthy recovery. Make a habit out of doing these standing and laying down piriformis muscle stretches throughout your day.


Of course, don’t over do it and hurt yourself. The goal is to get that piriformis muscle to release out of his “fight or flight” state and into a calm “rest and relaxation” mode.


Exercise 1: Standing Piriformis stretch


Place the outside of your painful leg on a table or counter that is a little bit below your hips. Find a height that is comfortable for you.


 You can increase this stretch by leaning forward towards the table. Make sure you don’t just bend at the waist but really lean your whole body if you can.

Exercise 2: Supine Piriformis Stretch (“Figure 4 stretch)

Start laying flat on your back


From this flat position, bend the knee of your painful leg and place the ankle on the opposite thigh, just below the knee.


If you can, grab the back of the thigh of the leg with no pain and pull the leg towards your chest to deepen the stretch.


You can also put your foot on the wall to help stabilize this stretch.

Exercise 3: Prone Piriformis Stretch

This is very similar to the “Pigeon” yoga pose, you just need to remember to try to keep your forward leg bent at close to 90 degrees.


Sit with your right knee bent and your left leg extended behind you.


Try to get your right knee on the ground by dropping it towards the right and bringing your right foot closer to your left hand.


This stretch is more challenging then the other two so be careful and listen to your body.

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