Pain Therapy

Physical Therapy stretching and exercise video examples from a Doctor of Physical Therapy.

Hip Exercise - Supine Piriformis Stretch



Commonly Used For: Knee pain, back pain, hip pain, and sciatic nerve dysfunction.

Video Transcription: I'm going to show you a piriformis stretch which is a small stabilizing muscle in your hip here. It's commonly used to help treat sciatic nerve pain, hip pain, back pain, knee pain. It's a commonly tight muscle that causes problems. So what you're going to do is you're going to lay down. The side that you're stretching — in this case my right leg — is going to cross over your opposite side. You're going to put one hand on top of your knee. The other hand, over your ankle and then you're slowly going to pull towards your opposite shoulder until you feel a stretch right through your glutes here. You should not feel a pinch in the front of your thigh. If you do feel a pinch, you might need to stretch your hip flexors first [see: standing hip flexor stretch and kneeling hip flexor stretch]. If you get into this position and you don't feel a stretch, you can try raising up your opposite leg, grab behind your thigh and then, pull forward and that'll help give you a more intense stretch. You want to hold the stretch 30 seconds to a minute. And that's your piriformis stretch.

DISCLAIMER: PLEASE CONSULT YOUR DOCTOR BEFORE ATTEMPTING ANY OF THESE EXERCISES

WARNING! These exercise demonstration videos are designed to be educational. Please consult with your doctor before attempting to perform any of these exercises. If you experience any pain or discomfort, do not continue the exercise. STOP and consult your doctor!