Chair Yoga: Pigeon Pose

Pigeon Pose Variation in Chair

This pose opens up and stretches the hips and groin as is good for relieving muscle tension that can cause sciatica. This pose stretches the muscles that are deeper than the glutes, the piriformis muscles. When these muscles are tight they can pinch the sciatic nerve causing sciatic pain in hip, buttock or even down the leg and into the calf and foot.

Note: Not all sciatica is caused by tightness in this area so if this stretch aggravates your sciatica then you should stop immediately and consult a doctor.

You should not do this pose if it strains your knees, the stretch should be felt in hip and buttock only.

Begin by sitting in your chair with a tall spine, feet on the floor hip distance apart with your knees right above your feet. Bring your right ankle up onto your left knee. You should feel this stretch in your right hip and buttock. If the stretch is too intense, slide your left foot farther away from you which will decrease the angle of the hip stretch. Hold a gentle stretch for 4-6 breaths giving the muscles time to relax. After you have done both sides you should do the two counterposes; cat/cow variation in chair and forward fold over knees to release tension from hips and lower back and to bring your body back to neutral.