yoga for sciatica pain

10 best yoga poses for sciatica relief

Yoga for sciatica pain is important because nearly 40% of people suffer from sciatica pain in their lifetime.

It affects more than 3 million people in the US each year alone.

If you’re someone who has suffered or still suffering from sciatica, then you already know how much it can negatively impact your life and activities. 

Luckily, there is sciatica pain relief at home. Things such as yoga for sciatica pain that you can do to ease your sciatica pain.

However, with so many different yoga poses available, how do you know which one is the best yoga for sciatica?

Check out this guide to learn about the best yoga for sciatica pain, which will help you to relieve your discomfort.

What is sciatica?

When we use the term sciatica, we actually refer to the sciatic nerve. 

This nerve starts in the lower back and runs deep through the buttocks and thighs and along the side of the legs. 

And sciatica is caused when the sciatic nerve is compressed, irritated, or injured by any means.

This injury can usually occur due to muscle tightness, overuse, herniated disk, or similar injury.

Sciatica pain is characterized as a sharp, throbbing, or burning sensation that shoots or radiates down through your leg. It may also make you feel numbness, tingling, and inflammation. This is often experienced on one side of the body. 

Additionally, for some people, sciatica is nothing more than a minor nuisance, but for others, it can cause serious pain and completely disrupts their day.

How yoga for sciatica pain helps?

According to a small study in 2013, it was found that certain yoga poses can help with sciatica.  

And this is because yoga for sciatica pain has the ability to…

Reduce your pain associated with medication.

Improve your limitations in certain activities.

Reduces your chronic lower back pain.

Research has proven these abilities of yoga.[1

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Best yoga poses for sciatica pain relief

Let’s take a deeper look at how you can use the therapeutic applications of yoga for sciatica pain to prevent, soothe, and heal sciatica. 

1. Cobra Pose (Bhujangasana)

This is a soothing pose that strengthens and stretches your spine and results in promoting circulation and flexibility. 

  • Begin with lying on your stomach with your hands under your shoulders.
  • Keep your elbows close and squeeze them into your body.
  • Take a deep breath and lift your head, chest, and shoulders.
  • With the help of your slightly bent elbows try to open your chest. 
  • Keep your thighs, lower back, and abdominals engaged. 
  • Your head should be pointed toward the ceiling.
  • Hold the pose for 60-90 seconds.
  • Release the pose and repeat it 4-6 times.

2. Locust Pose (Salabhasana)

This is the pose that strengthens your spine, glutes, and thighs.

It stabilizes your core and lower back and helps promote circulation and flexibility in your hips.

  • Begin with Lying on your stomach, interlace your fingers at the base of your spine and forehead resting on the ground.
  • Exhale and slowly lift your chest, head, and arms up as high as you can, resting on your lower ribs, belly, and front pelvis.
  • Bring your arms up parallel and away from your body.
  • Keep your gaze forward or slightly upward.
  • To go even further, raise both of your legs or 1 leg at a time.
  • Hold the pose for up to 30-60 seconds.
  • Release, and return to the starting position.
  • Rest and relax your body for a few breaths and repeat the pose 3-4 times.

3. Reclined Pigeon Pose (Supta Kapotasana)

Doing this Pose on your back helps support your lower back and puts less pressure on your hips. 

Reclined Pigeon Pose (Supta Kapotasana)

stretches your glutes and hips as well as the piriformis muscle.

  • Begin with lying down on your back with your knees bent and your heels in toward your hips.
  • Take a deep breadth and bend your right knee and bring your right ankle to the bottom of your left thigh.
  • If you already feel a deep stretch Stay here for some moves.
  • Now, lift your left foot and draw your left knee in toward your chest.
  • Try and hold behind your left thigh by interlacing your fingers. 
  • Hold the pose for 60-90 seconds.
  • Repeat the same for the other side also.
  • Do this pose 3-5 times each side.

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4. Wind-Relieving Pose (Pawanmuktasana)

This pose is also known as Knees-to-Chest Pose and is an excellent pose to relieve tightness in your hips, lower back, and glutes.

  • Start with lying down on your back with your legs and arms extended. 
  • Now, Exhale and draw both knees in toward your chest.
  • Wrap your arm or Clasp your hands around them if you find it difficult to draw your knees. 
  • To go even further in pose, lift your head and tuck your chin into your chest.
  • Hold the pose for 60-90 seconds Keeping your breath smooth and even.
  • Now, with an exhalation, release and extend both legs along the floor and rest.
  • Repeat this for 4-5 times.

5.  Bridge Pose (Setu Bandha Sarvangasana)

Setu Bandha Sarvangasana or bridge pose stretches the spine, relieving pain and tension. 

Additionally, its gently stimulating effect on the body boosts circulation and works your legs, glutes, and core.

  • Start by lying on your back with your knees bent and your heels in toward your hips.
  • Now, bring your arms alongside your body with your palms facing down.
  • Slowly and gently lift your spine from the floor, raising your hips as high as possible for you.
  • You can also place a block between your knees or thighs to maintain alignment.
  • Now, lower back down slowly after holding the pose in the top position for up to 1 minute.
  • Relax your body in the starting position and repeat for 10 times.

6. Legs-Up-the-Wall pose (Viparita Karani)

This is the ultimate pose for restoring your posture. 

Additionally, it allows your body to rest, relax, and recover.

This pose provides blood circulation a gentle boost toward your upper body and head, which is important for rebalancing after you have been standing or sitting for a long time.

  • Sit with your right side beside the wall of your room, with bent knees and your feet drawn in toward your hips.
  • Now, Swing your legs up against the wall as you turn to lie flat on your back.
  • Try keeping your hips against the wall or slightly away.
  • You can place your arms in any comfortable position.
  • Just be in this position as long as possible.
  • To come out of the pose, gently push yourself away from the wall.
  • Relax for some time. 

Place a cushion or bolster under your hips if you need extra support.

7. Downward-Facing Dog (adho mukha svanasana)

Now, this bend helps bring your body into alignment, relieving pain and tightness. 

Downward-Facing Dog(adho mukha svanasana) promotes strength in your entire body while helping to correct imbalances and nerve tension.

  • Start on your hands and knees or a tabletop position. 
  • Press into your hands and try to lift your hips toward the ceiling.
  • Once you get into this position, drop your head down and get your ears in line with your upper arms or your chin all the way in toward your chest.
  • Hold this pose for up to 60-90seconds.
  • Repeat 4-5 times.

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8. Child’s Pose (Balasana)

Child’s Pose(Balasana) is a wonderful way to finetune and relax your body. 

It gently lengthens and stretches your spine, promoting flexibility and openness in your hips, thighs, and lower back.

  • Start with your hands and knees or come to all four. 
  • Now, get your knees together and sink your hips back onto your heels.
  • Extend your both arms in front of you or allow them to rest alongside your body.
  • Now get your torso to relax completely as you fall heavy into your thighs.
  • Keep your focus on deepening your breath to relax any areas of tightness or sensation.
  • Hold this pose for up to 2-3 minutes.

9. Half Moon Pose (Ardha Chandrasana)

Half Moon Pose or Ardha Chandrasana strengthens, stabilizes, and balances your body. 

This will increase flexibility, relieve tension, and stretch your spine, glutes, and thighs.

  • Begin with a standing pose, such as Triangle, or start with a triangle pose, with your right foot in front.
  • Now, gently bend your right knee a bit deeper and yield your weight into your right foot.
  • Get your left hand to your hip.
  • Make your left foot forward a few inches as you reach your right hand to the floor in front of and to the right of your right foot.
  • Lift your left leg so get parallel to the floor, pressing out through your left heel.
  • Rotate your torso and hip open and keep your gaze forward.
  • Hold this pose for 1-2 minutes.
  • Slowly release by bending your right leg and lowering your left leg, relax.
  • Repeat the pose on the opposite side.

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10. Half Lord of the Fishes Pose (Ardha Matsyendrasana)

This yoga for sciatica pain stretches and lengthens your spine, relieving pain and tension. Feel the movement from this twist starting in your lower back.

  • Begin with a seated position. Now, get your right foot to the outside of your left hip with your knee pointed forward or to the side.
  • Make your left foot to the outside of your right thigh.
  • Bring your left hand to the floor behind you, keeping supported on your fingertips.
  • Close your right arm around your left thigh or bring it to the outside of your left thigh.
  • Lift and lengthen your spine with every deep inhale.
  • With each ongoing exhale, twist a bit more to move more deeply into the pose.
  • Keep your head to gaze in any direction.
  • Hold for up to 1-2 minutes.
  • Repeat on the opposite side.

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If you have sciatica pain, this yoga for sciatica pain may help you feel better. 

It’s a good idea to check in with a professional at least once a month to make sure you’re on the right track. If not you may practice these with ease, gentleness, and safety. 

Note you must visit a doctor or a physical therapist if you have sciatica pain that lasts longer than a month, is severe, or is coupled with any unusual symptoms.

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