Release the Piriformis to Alleviate Low Back Pain

Aches and pains in the lower back region can take away the joy of training. However, you can take charge of this by performing some simple self-myofascial release techniques on your piriformis.

The piriformis puts up with a lot, whether through overuse, as in strenuous training and quick changes of direction, or underuse, as in excessive sitting. You can use a trigger point ball, a ball from BlackRoll, or a lacrosse ball to help release the tightness.

  1. Locate the piriformis. It is below your gluteal muscles. From a side view, it is midway between the base of your spine and the front of your hip.
  2. Position that spot on top of the ball and sit down. Keep your posture straight and your shoulders up.
  3. Apply pressure around the piriformis for about a minute.

After rolling out your piriformis, you need to stretch it. Try these:

Release the Piriformis

  1. Figure Four – Sit with your legs bent and cross one ankle over the opposite knee. Try to bring your butt as close to your heels as possible.
  2. Pigeon Stretch – Extend one leg back and fold the other under you with your foot to the side. Lean forward and down toward the ground as much as you can.
  3. Modified Pigeon Stretch – If you are having trouble doing the pigeon stretch, you can modify it by folding your leg on top of a bench and bending your back knee.

 If you give your body the proper care, it will respond. In this way, you can fight back against back pain.