5 Easy Sacroiliac Joint Exercises to Stop Sciatic Pain
The Sacroiliac joint (or SI joint) can be another common cause of sciatica. This joint is located in the hips and when it becomes inflamed it can swell and irritate the sciatic nerve, resulting in sciatica. I’d like to share a few simple Sacroiliac joint exercises with you here that can help to open up this joint and alleviate sciatic pain.
The first in the series of Sacroiliac joint exercises is called a press up by some people and a “cobra” stretch if you happen to practice yoga. To do this, you lie on your stomach and then press your upper body off of the floor with your arms. You need to make sure to keep your pelvis and legs on the floor though, and keep them relaxed. If this pose is uncomfortable, only hold it for a few seconds, but aim at working up to about 30 seconds.
The next exercise is the Sacrum Rock. All you need to do is lie on your back and bend your knees so that your sacrum is resting flat on the ground. Then simply rock your hips back and forth. This action will massage the muscles in the lower back and sacrum and help to relax them.
The third of the Sacroiliac joint exercises is really just a variant of the first one. This is the Butterfly Stretch. Starting in the same position lying on your back with bent knees, open your legs so that your knees fall to either side. If possible touch your knees to the floor, but if you are not flexible enough to do this, don’t worry. Then lift the knees back to the center position again. Do about 10 reps of this, making slow and deliberate movements that allow you to really work the muscles.
The fourth exercise is a reverse sit-up. Lie on your back and as you exhale lift your legs up into the air while keeping your upper body on the ground. If possible, try to get your legs perpendicular to the ground, but if you cannot do this right now, that is okay. You can slowly work up to this level of flexibility. Sometimes it can help to hold onto the legs of a chair or table to keep your upper body on the ground.
Next, do a few wall-sits. My high school gym teacher used to make us do these as punishment when we acted up. They may be difficult, but they will help to stabilize the hips and pelvis. Stand near a wall. Then rest your back and tailbone against the wall so that your thighs make a 90 degree angle with the wall and your calves make a 90 degree angle with the floor. Hold this pose as long as you can. Remember that you should not use your arms to support yourself. The action is in the legs.
These five Sacroiliac joint exercises can help to open and relieve stress on the hips and pelvis if you practice them daily. They may be challenging to master at first, but your body will get used to them and you will be able to strengthen your muscles, which will ultimately make it easier for you to support your hips without causing pain.