On a weekly basis I have client that come in with “Sciatica”, I’m going to get on my soap box now and yell out for all that are willing to hear. Sciatica is a HORRIBLE term and tells you nothing about how to treat it, if you don’t believe me just google it. You will see different programs from everyone. Some programs are core strength base, some are extension based, others are flexion based, while others cover all of these in a shotgun method. So which one of these could possibly be correct? The correct answer is it depends on what is causing your sciatica…
Wait what???? Does this mean that sciatica is a SYMPTOM and not a Diagnosis? Yes, yes it does. Let’s put this in terms of a headache. A headache is a symptom and can be caused by many things, and mismanaged in many ways. A tension headache needs to be treated differently that a true migraine, and both of these need to be treated differently that a headache caused by a blow to the head. This is the same with Sciatica.
There are many causes for Sciatica, the most common ones are a disc herniation (this typically respond well to extension based programs), spinal stenosis (this typically respond well to flexion based programs), nerve root impingement (Typically responds well to flexion, rotation and unloading banded programs), instability that causes nerve irritation (this typically respond well to core stability based programs).
Yes, I did not mention anything about the piriformis causing Sciatica, because the people that have true piriformis syndrome is so small that it is not worth the time to go through that type of program. If all you do is stretch you piriformis your symptoms may get relief but will not resolve.
The goal with this video and program is to loosen up the nerve path that the sciatic nerve takes down the leg. This will allow centralization (nerve pain coming up the leg towards the back) of your pain allowing for decreased nerve pain. To figure out the root cause of your pain and get it better as fast as possible see a medical professional that does not just diagnosis your symptoms but diagnoses the cause.
Consistency is key, there is a physiologic healing time with these types of injuries it will not get better in a day. Be patient and consistent with the exercises, trust the process it can take weeks.
Thanks for reading!