Sciatica Exercises

These exercises can be used in mild to moderate cases of sciatica to ease symptoms and muscle tension

Exercises which are suitable for use by sciatic pain sufferers will depend on the severity of the symptoms and the exact cause of the pain.

The main aim of the following exercises is to maintain lower back mobility adn to decrease muscle tension and spasm.

The exercises demonstrated here are examples only, we recommend seeing a Doctor or sports injury specialist for advice on specific exercises for your condition. Do not perform any exercises which cause pain or increase symptoms.


Stretching exercises can be used to help reduce muscle tension. Stretches for the lower back and buttock muscles are particularly useful.

Hold stretches for 20-30 seconds, rest and repeat the same stretch once or even twice more. Do this several times a day.

Don't stretch if you feel any pain at the time, or if you feel this exacerbates on condition later on.


Mobility / Strengthening Exercises

If you sciatica is caused by a lumbar disc prolapsed (slipped disc) then extension exercises are recommended to help reduce the compression of the disc on the nerve root.

The video below shows an example of an extension exercise, known as a dorsal raise. This should be performed slowly and under complete control. Stop immediately if there is any pain or discomfort.

The second video shows generalised back mobility exercises which can be used to keep the back moving. Research shows that bed rest and immobilisation is no longer the best form of treatment for most mild to moderate back injuries.