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Sciatic Nerve

My sciatic nerve is inflamed and the pain periodically goes down my right leg. It mostly hurts when I'm driving (!) Anyone ever have this injury and what did you do to get better? I suspect I got this from not stretching enough before or after some of my workouts.


Mon. May 28, 12:12pm

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Stretching, massage, chiropractic adjustments, acupuncture, supplementing with additional magnesium (helps relax your muscles) all work well for sciatica. It's probably a good idea to change your workout until it is fully resolved. In my experience, the elliptical trainer is the top culprit for exacerbating sciatica pain. It may take some time to get it fully under control, so be patient and just keep trying things until you find what works for you. Water exercise, stair climber and bike would be my top picks, based on my own experience with this pain.

Monday, May 28, 2007, 3:12 PM

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thanks! I'll try some of those suggestions. I think it is from some heavy duty uphill power walking that I've been doing - probably similar to elliptical...

If anyone else has ideas or suggestions please share. Any good stretches to incorporate?

Monday, May 28, 2007, 7:17 PM

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I would suggest Hatha yoga, or if you would like a more strenuous version, Ashtanga Yoga.

The yoga workouts DVDs I use most are David Swenson's "Yoga Short Forms" (more strenuous) and Shiva Rea's "Yoga Shakti" (4 workouts varying from very mild to fairly strenuous).

Both of should be available thru and

Yoga Shakti is the better value overall for a beginning yogi, and much more visually interesting.


Monday, May 28, 2007, 8:38 PM

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Are you sure it's your Sciatic nerve?

I found out that I have something called Piriformis syndrome, and it started when I started running. It usually is just a feeling of that muscle being sore, like I didn't stretch it enough, and yes I feel more pain from it when driving than at any other time.

The link is to an article on the Cool Running website and it's where I found out about this syndrome.


Monday, May 28, 2007, 11:40 PM

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Yes I have had that. Eventually my calf and the bottom of my foot lost feeling and the intense pain shooting down my leg made it impossible for me to walk or even be up for more than 15 minutes at a stretch. I had to have several spinal injections and then surgery. I did this after extensive physical therapy, chiropractic and more painkillers than you can shake a stick at (which make me nauseaus). Today I lead a fairly normal, active life, but volutarily restrict myself if the activity involves high impact or heavy lifting. The good thing is that a great many folks get better with physical therapy alone - it is highly effective.

My advice? Get thee to a physical therapist who specializes in back problems. Most sciatic nerve problems originate in the back, and if this isn't the case with you, they'll recognize it and tell you what is actually causing your symptoms. They can give you a number of stretches and exercizes to target your specific problem, plus they were better than any doctor or specialist I went to at really targeting the root cause. I may have ended up having surgery in the end, but the strengthening and stretching I did before that enabled me to have a smooth recovery.

With my particular set of issues my PT recommened I stay away from yoga as some of the poses aggravated me. They recommened pilates instead, but said I simply had to do yoga they would give me some guidelines for types of poses to stay away from. This is why it's very important with anything like this to consult someone who can give you some guidance and professional advice.

Having been through this, I wouldn't even consider giving you advice on what stretches or activities to perform until you have been evaluated by a knowledgable medical professional and know the root cause that you are trying to address.

Best wishes!

Tuesday, May 29, 2007, 10:02 AM

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i've got problems with mine... it came from a really bad car accident about 10 years ago, i've found chiropractic adjustments to be the most helpful...

Tuesday, May 29, 2007, 10:38 AM

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Thanks for all of this great information! I have been doing some stretching exercises and have not had a lot of relief. I made an appointment to get a referral for a physical therapist! I hope to be back to my regular routine soon... but in the mean time am focusing on other parts of my body!

I think the poster who suggests that it might be Piriformis syndrome - might have nailed it... Thanks again!

Thursday, May 31, 2007, 5:23 PM

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