Performing downward-facing Dog pose, cobra pose, and locust can help to improve the spine and make it flexible. Yoga poses like the bridge pose. Knees to chest pose and half-moon pose are beneficial for Sciatica.
Avoid exercises that can cause pain and stress to the backbone. Seated and forward bends should be avoided as they stress the pelvis and lower back.
Apply cold packs on the affected area for 15-20 min daily in intervals. Then, place a hot bag for 2 to 3 days to warm and soften the area. Do stretching exercises but do not put extra pressure during stretching. Proper medications are always the best way to cure Sciatica.
What is Sciatica?
Sciatica is caused by a twisted sciatic nerve. The most common cause is a bulging disc in the spine. Expansion of bone, known as bone spurs, on the spinal bones can also cause Sciatica. A tumor can frequently put pressure on a nerve. A condition such as diabetes can also harm the nerve. If it is not treated on time, it may cause lifelong back pain.
Is your Sciatic nerve giving you a lot of pain lately, restricting your day to day activities? Have you been looking for ways to reduce the numbness or burning in your leg or buttock? You have come to the right place then. Ease your Sciatica effectively by practicing these 7 yoga postures every day and experience the difference. But before we begin let’s take a look at what Sciatica really is!
There are numerous nerves in the human body, Sciatic nerve is the largest and longest one among them all. It travels from the lower spine and passes deep into the buttock. From there it goes all the way down to the thigh and foot. Sciatic nerve forms a connection between the spinal cord and the muscles of leg and foot.
Now, what happens to this nerve that starts causing the pain? Compression! Symptoms like pain, burning sensation, tingling or numbness start to appear when there is some kind of compression in your Sciatic nerve. These symptoms though appear only on the one side of the lower body. This condition is known as Sciatica.
Don’t panic if you have been diagnosed with Sciatica because yoga has the solution for it. Some simple yoga poses combined with a healthy diet and lifestyle will sure help you control Sciatica to a great extent. These poses work on your lower body and exercise Sciatic nerve to reduce the pain and providing relief.
Common Symptoms of Sciatica
Common Symptoms of Sciatica are Pain that ranges from mild to intense in your lower back, pelvis, and across the leg. Numbness or weakness in the back, shoulders, thigh, calf, or foot. Constant pain that increases with movement; immobility. The feeling of poking in your legs, toes, or foot.
Find the cause of your Sciatica
Sciatica can develop from tumors, illness, scar tissue formation, fluid accumulation, Pott’s disease, or a lumbar spine fracture. Sciatica can also develop due to inappropriate muscle injection techniques in the buttocks or after hip joint surgery. In addition, Sciatica affects about 1% of pregnant women at some point throughout their pregnancy.
Practice the mentioned poses mildly and slowly if you are completely new to yoga. Don’t overstretch, move as far as your body comfortably allows you to. Keep the number of repetitions low initially. Notice how you feel for the next few days and if the results are positive, gradually increase the duration and repetitions of staying in the postures. Practice the poses in the same manner as given below.
1. Shashankasana (Child’s Pose)
Many nerve connections emerge from the spinal column. These connections often get compressed by spinal discs for various reasons such as poor lifestyle. Shashankasana release that pressure from the discs, it tones sciatic nerve and hence is highly beneficial for those who suffer from Sciatica.
The base position for Shashankasana is Vajrasana (Thunderbolt Pose) which is the best meditative pose for those who suffer from Sciatica.
Click here to find the detailed article on Shashankasana
2. Vyaghrasana (Tiger Pose)
Vyaghrasana is one the best poses for exercising the whole spinal column. In this pose, you stretches and contracts the back alternatively in the upward and downward direction. This yoga asana tones the spinal nerves along with sciatic nerve, resulting in the relief from Sciatica pain. Follow the movements gently and slowly in this pose.
Check the steps and other benefits of Vyaghrasana (Tiger Pose)
3. Makarasana (Crocodile Pose)
Here is another yoga pose to help you release the compression accumulated in spinal nerves. This simple looking yoga posture can effectively relieve sciatica. It benefits the lower back, that’s exactly where the Sciatic nerve emerges from. This pose works at the root of Sciatic nerve, therefore, reducing pain.
Know the steps to practice Makarasana (Crocodile Pose) with detailed benefits
4. Matsya Kridasana (Flapping Fish Pose)
Having done 3 yoga poses that release the compression from sciatic nerve in the lower back. Now is the time for a pose that relives the nerve in the legs hence working on the same nerve at its lower part. Being a relaxation pose, Matsya Kridasana gives you the added benefit of relaxing the whole mind and body.
Read the detailed article on Matsya Kridasana here
5. Shalabhasana (Locust Pose)
Shalabhasana is a very effective pose to get rid of several ailments of the spine such as a slipped disc, backache and of course sciatica. Though it works well only when your condition is not too severe. This pose is a bit more strenuous than the others. If you find it hard to do this one, try to practice with only one leg at a time. That will make it easier.
Here is the link to the complete article on Shalabhasana
6. Shava Udarakarshanasana (Universal Spinal Twist)
Universal Spinal Twist gives a gentle stretch to the spine. Spinal twists generally pull the muscles of the spine in the opposite directions. Therefore reduces the strain and stiffness to efficiently ease the pain in sciatic nerve. Just relax in the pose and experience its soothing effects on your middle and lower back.
Click here to find the detailed article on Shava Udarakarshanasana
7. Pawanmuktasana (Wind Relieving Pose)
A severe condition of Sciatica leads to knee pain on the affected side of the body which increases the suffering even more. Now it’s not just the Sciatica that you have to take care of but also the knee pain. Pawanmuktasana removes the pressure from spinal vertebrae. Good thing is, this pose doesn’t only provides relief from Sciatica but also relives the knee pain.
Check the steps and other benefits of Pawanmuktasana (Wind Relieving Pose)
Precautions while performing yoga
Yoga is not to be practiced when tired, unwell, rushed, or under high stress. Women should avoid regular yoga practice, particularly asanas, throughout their menstrual cycle. Do not do yoga immediately after eating. After 30 minutes of yoga, do not shower, drink water, or eat anything.
Stay healthy stay strong and get the best out of life.
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