Piriformis & Glute Stretches From a Pelvic Floor Physiotherapist

Amy Gildner

Prevent or reduce lower back pain with these piriformis and glute stretches. Learn figure 4 stretches with modifications. Taught by Amy Gildner, Pelvic Floor Physiotherapist.

All right, it’s Amy again. Back with yet another stretch of the day.

This one is one of my personal favorites as a runner. It is the figure four stretch, otherwise known as a piriformis stretch. Piriformis is a nasty little muscle in your glute region that is a big contributor to a lot of SI joint pain, a lot of low back pain. Also, one of the leading causes of negging sciatica, if you guys know what that is.

Here we go. I’m going to give you the regular figure four stretch, as well as, a modification. You lie down on your back, again, I have my mat. You’re going to start off with your knees bent. I’m going to do my left side first. All I’m gonna do is cross that left leg over the right. You want to cross the ankle on the knee. You don’t want to be too far in the crook of your knee, should not be resting on the other leg. Should be more in the ankle. The biggest mistake I see is people angle their knee towards them, you do not want that. That is stretching something else. You want to push that leg away. So for some of you that are really tight, this might be enough of the stretch here. If you’re pushing that knee away and getting perpendicular angles that might be enough of the stretch.

If it’s not, what you can do is take it one step further. Actually, bring this opposing leg up reach underneath that support leg, and bring everything towards you. Feels great, kind of a love-hate thing with this one. I’m very take through here, again, you would hold this for about 60 seconds on each side.

If this is not enough but this is not achievable or if you’re pregnant with a large belly, a modification is, again, getting a little sheet wrapping it around this support leg and just lifting it up, holding here so you’re a little bit more supportive with that. You’re still going to achieve a great stretch here.

All right so that’s your stretch of the day, I’ll see you tomorrow.

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