Exercises for sciatica: degenerative disc disease 

In this video a physiotherapist demonstrates gentle exercises for degenerative disc disease, one of the possible causes of sciatica. The aim of these exercises is to strengthen, mobilise and stabilise the surrounding area in order to prevent any further pain. This video is part of a series on exercises for sciatica.

Learn about the causes of sciatica

Transcript of Exercises for sciatica: degenerative disc disease

EXERCISES FOR SCIATICA DEGENERATIVE DISC DISEASE My name is Sammy Margoand I'm a chartered physiotherapist. Today I'm going to talk to you aboutdegenerative disc disease. The main aim of these exercises is tohelp strengthen, mobilise and stabilise the surrounding areaso that you've got good scaffolding and you can preventany further recurrences. Getting into the position for exercises, the best position to lie inis crook-lined. So lying on your backwith your knees gently bent. This takes the slack off your low back. Most people can exercise inthis position. If you can't lie on the floor,you can lie on a plinth or lie on the bed,it's absolutely fine. Throughout the exercises,I'd like you to engage your abdominals which means pull your tummy muscles in. Just to start off with, we're goingto do some gentle mobilising and strengthening exerciseswhich are known as pelvic tilting. It's a very gentle exercise. So can you feel my hand under your back. And squash down, engagingyour tummy muscles and hold there. Five, four, three, two, one. And relax. If you feel any pain or discomfort,let me know. And one more. Push it down.Hold for five, four, three, two, one. And relax.So you can do those ten times. Obviously, I won't be there, so if you want to have a go atputting your hand under your back. And just push down and holding it,holding it, holding it. If you feel any pain or discomfort,stop and let it go. The next exercise is to progress thatinto a idge. So push down again hardand squeeze your buttocks and lift your buttocks up. Lift your buttocks up. And ing them down. And again, squeeze your buttocks. Rolling it up. So the aim is to stabiliseand strengthen and mobilise at the same time. And let yourself come down. Doing this idging ten times is great. But if you can't go very far,just go a little way up. Just squeeze your buttocksand just go to there. And then come down. OK? Moving on now. Another thing you want to do is keepthe spine mobile so rolling your knees, or knee rolling,which is the same as rotations, it's a very good exercise. So pulling your tummy muscles innice and tight and just roll your kneesgently from side to side. We're just trying to buildthe scaffolding up around the middle part of your bodyand just strengthen the area. So side to side. That's a very nice,gentle mobilising exercise. The next exercise is buttock squeezing. And squeeze your buttock musclesand suck your pelvic floor up and in as if you're stopping yourselffrom weeing. And relax.So just a good old contraction. So squeeze yourself as hard you can,hold it there, two, three, four, five. And relax. And again. Squeeze your buttocksas hard as you can. Hold it there. Two, three, four, five. Relax. And one more. Squeeze it. Two, three, four, five. Great. And for this particular problem, you can do these exercises in lying,sitting, standing. But the main aim is to strengthen,stabilise and mobilise the area without provoking any pain. In addition to this, it is quite goodto do some general mobilising exercises like walking, cycling or swimming because your body likesthe movement and rhythm. The joints like movement and rhythm. Provided you're not causingany pain or discomfort, doing stuff like that will actually helpget you going, keep you strong, keep your weight off,improve your posture and help strengthen you up generally. IF YOU EXPERIENCEANY PAIN OR DISCOMFORT WHILE DOING THESE EXERCISES PLEASE STOPAND CONSULT YOUR GP FOR MORE INFORMATION GO TO:www.nhs.uk/sciatica


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