Sciatic pain can be relieved by performing press ups and curl ups, along with extension exercises to ease the pressure on the sciatic nerve and leg lifts that can be performed in or outside of water. Other useful exercises include back extensions and knee-to-stomach stretches.
Exercising relieves sciatic pain by encouraging fluid exchange in and around the sciatic nerve. Exercises that focus on extending the back, hips and legs, with the addition of hot and cold packs, promote pain relief from sciatica. Over-the-counter medication is also used for temporary relief.
Sciatic pain, or pain along the lower back down to the hips and legs, occurs when a herniated disc pinches the sciatic nerve. This pinching results in inflammation and usually happens on one side of the body. The pain can be mild or extreme and is worsened by sitting for a long time. The Mayo Clinic suggests getting immediate medical help if there is sudden piercing pain or numbness in the lower back or leg or if there is difficulty controlling the bladder or bowels.
According to WebMD, if the pain persists or exercises offer little relief, other treatments such as surgery and steroid injections, physical therapy and medications like anti-inflammatories and muscle relaxants are recommended.