Stretches for Piriformis Syndrome


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Do any two of the  following stretches 3x/day, eight repetitions each.  You can switch exercises each session if you wish.

  1.  Lie on your back on a towel or yoga mat.  Raise the knee of the affected leg towards you and grasp around it with your hands, fingers interlaced (you can also try grasping your distal thigh right behind your knee).  Pull your knee upwards and towards your opposite shoulder.  You should feel a stretch in your gluteal muscles.  Hold it for six seconds; lower your leg all the way down to starting position, then repeat.
  2. Get on your hands and knees, then slowly slide your non-painful leg backwards while turning the symptomatic leg inwards as you lower your body towards the ground.  You should feel a strong stretch in your piriformis muscle of the affected leg.
  3. Lie on your back.  Bend the knee of your symptomatic leg 45 degrees, and with the opposite hand gently pull it to the side; hold for ten seconds; relax and repeat.
  4. Lie on your back and bend both knees 45 degrees, feet resting on the floor.  Cross the painful leg over the other knee.  Grasp behind the knee of the pain-free leg, interlock your fingers and gently pull straight up towards your face.  Feel the stretch in your gluteal muscles, and hold for ten seconds; relax and repeat.

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