Suffering From Sciatica? Try This Doctor’s Approved Exercise for Sciatic Nerve Pain Relief

Struggle with sciatica? Relieve agonizing sciatica in as little as 60 seconds with this doctor-backed exercise
2 mins read
sciatic nerve pain relief exercises

Sciatica is a real pain in the butt. Literally!

The sciatic nerve runs from the low back all the way down to the toes, making this the longest nerve in the entire body (1). Plus, it has intimate connections with the spinal cord, meaning that even neck motions can affect the sciatic nerve. 

When anything pinches or compresses the sciatic nerve, the patient may feel burning, tingling, and pain all the way down the affected leg, or in the buttocks.

But if you suffer from sciatica, you don’t care about any of this information. All you want to know is “how can I get rid of my sciatic nerve pain?”

In this article, I’ll discuss an interesting exercise that can help significantly with sciatica: the sciatic nerve glide. Best of all, you can do this stretch on your own at home, with no need to even get off of the couch.*

sciatic nerve pain relief

*As always, consult with your doctor or healthcare provider before initiating any exercise or treatment on your own.

Sciatic Nerve Glides

Gliding, also known as flossing, the sciatic nerve is one unique way to relieve tension in this area. A nerve glide can be thought of as pulling at one end of the nerve, while relaxing it at the other end, then switching. In doing so, you can essentially “glide” the nerve back and forth within its sheath, releasing any built-up tension.

Flossing the sciatic nerve can be painful if you do too much, too fast. So, be sure to take your time, follow these instructions, and stop the exercise if it makes your symptoms worse.

Also, there are a number of other ways to perform the sciatic nerve glide. If this technique doesn’t work for you, you may consider investigating an alternative method. 

How to Perform

  • Sit in a chair with your shoulders “slumped” forward.
  • Extend the affected knee out in front of you, as if you are kicking out.
  • At the same time, extend your head backward, so that you are looking up at the ceiling.
  • If you’re able to, bend your toes backward at the same time. Some people may not be able to do this, at least not at first.
  • Hold this position for 3 seconds, then reverse the motion by bending your knee backward and tucking your chin to your chest.
  • Repeat this motion 10 times a day, every day, trying to go a bit further each time.


Sciatica is a tricky condition that affects tons of people every year. Luckily, by using easy, at-home treatments such as nerve glides, you can ease the pain and discomfort felt during episodes of sciatica.

Nerve glides only take a few minutes, and they can save you from some serious pain. Try it out today to see if it helps with your sciatica symptoms!

Works Cited

  1. Allegri M, Montella S, Salici F, Valente A, Marchesini M, Compagnone C, Baciarello M, Manferdini ME, Fanelli G. Mechanisms of low back pain: a guide for diagnosis and therapy. F1000Res. 2016 Jun 28;5:F1000 Faculty Rev-1530. doi: 10.12688/f1000research.8105.2. PMID: 27408698; PMCID: PMC4926733.
  2. Alshami AM, Alghamdi MA, Abdelsalam MS. Effect of Neural Mobilization Exercises in Patients With Low Back-Related Leg Pain With Peripheral Nerve Sensitization: A Prospective, Controlled Trial. J Chiropr Med. 2021 Jun;20(2):59-69. doi: 10.1016/j.jcm.2021.07.001. Epub 2021 Oct 2. PMID: 34987322; PMCID: PMC8703155.

Bennett Richardson, DPT, PT, CSCS

Bennett Richardson, based in Pittsburgh, PA, is a dedicated physical therapist and writer. Certified as a strength and conditioning coach (CSCS) since 2014, he holds a BS in exercise science and a doctorate in physical therapy, both from Slippery Rock University. Beyond his professional pursuits, Bennett enjoys leisurely reading and staying active.

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