Sciatica stretching is not your first step in removing your sciatica. Although it is one of the most important things you need to do if you want to eliminate your sciatica once and for all.
Read on to find out what to stretch, how to stretch and when to stretch. Also learn the only essential stretch you must do to get long term relief from sciatica.
Sciatica is a worrying condition that most people are fearful about. The belief is that surgery is one of the only options, or that you will long term care to help. This is not true and there are many things you can do your self to ease, remove and prevent your sciatica.
There are three things you need to know about sciatica stretching. These are...
What should you stretch?
The simplest question first. This is not rocket science. The muscles you should stretch are the ones that are tight and causing your sciatica.
There are major and minor muscles involved. The major muscles influence your lower back and how it moves and functions. These are the muscles you should always target. The minor muscles can be involved and can be stretched for the sake of completeness, or if you find these are tight.
The major muscles are your Piriformis, Hip Flexors, Erector Spinae, Hamstring and Gluteals.
The minor muscles are your Adductors, Tensor Fascia Lata, Quadratus Lumborum and Quadriceps.
The major muscles are the more common that cause lower back pain and sciatica, and also inhibit flexibility. Target these and big changes occur. This leads into the second question...
What is the best way to stretch?
Most people stretch by holding tension in the muscle for a minute or more. Although this standard stretch is okay to use, it is actually the least effective way to ease sciatica.
The most effective way to stretch, which as been shown for years through various research institutions and sports facilities, is using what is called PNF.
PNF is a type of stretch that creates a rebound relaxation of the muscle. It only takes 6 seconds to stretch the muscle and you repeat it three times. So in less than 20 seconds you can ease muscle tension quicker and faster than the standard way of stretching.
It is also a highly safe way of stretching and will not irritate the nerve if you use it as instructed. Once you know how to use PNF stretches you can apply the same technique to any muscle that is tight.
However knowing what to stretch and how to stretch are the less important than knowing when to stretch.
When is the best time to use sciatica stretching?
Timing is everything when it comes to sciatica stretching. This does not mean how long to stretch and what time of day is best to ease muscle tension.
To understand this you need to know why you are stretching. You use sciatica stretching to ease muscle tension. Yet when you stretch and then use the muscle immediately after, you negate the stretch.
Using a muscle causes it to contract and shorten. Tight muscles have become habitual tight and you need to train them to stay in a relaxed state when not in use. If you stretch and then use a muscle, it will not learn to stay relaxed. Stretching before sport or exercise is there to bring blood supply to the muscle and to prepare it for action.
Stretching to relieve pain requires you to relax the muscle for as long as possible. You still need to reinforce the habits by stretching 3 times each day, but there is one essential time to stretch.
The best time to use sciatica stretching is just prior to bed. You stretch the muscle using the PNF stretches and then lie on bed and rest. You can go to sleep or read a book, but resting the muscle is the key to changing the habitual tightness in the muscle.
But even knowing when to stretch is still not as important as knowing the first essential step in relieving any back pain issue.
The first essential step of sciatica stretching
The only essential step in stretching to relieve pain is not actually stretching.
The first and only vital step is finding the patterns of distortion that exist in your spine. These patterns allow your muscles to tire and tighten and are the reason you nee to stretch. These patterns will also cause joint and pelvis imbalances which are also essential to fix for long lasting results.
This first step is the most commonly forgotten step and is the main reason why the success results for sciatica are so poor.
Unless you can find these patterns you will not know what or where to target. If you only use sciatica stretching to ease a few muscles, you will only have temporary relief.
What is the best approach to ease your sciatica pain?
To get long lasting results you must both remove the symptoms and the cause. First you must identify which spinal imbalances are present, then attack the symptomatic processes. This can be achieved by using many techniques from ice/heat, Acupressure and anti-inflammatory measures. Then you must perform corrective techniques that target the spinal imbalances.
The principles of Spinal Balancing address the both the pain and the root cause of the condition that is responsible for your sciatica pain. Through self assessments, your individual spinal imbalances can be identified, and a targeted corrective program can be developed for your specific needs.
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All material herein is provided for information only and may not be construed as personal medical advice. No action should be taken based solely on the contents of this information; instead, readers should consult appropriate health professionals on any matter relating to their health and well-being. The information is provided with the understanding that the publisher does not enter into a health-care practitioner/patient relationship with its readers. The publisher is not responsible for errors or omissions.
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