You can touch your toes.
Why this matters:
We’ll need to bend over to pick something up in our daily lives. Why make it scary? When you’re in pain, you’re often taught to not bend over, but what if you need to pick up your child? A Sock? A book from the floor? Do you just go on with your day? Ask someone for help?
The great news is that you don’t need to live in fear of doing this simple task. Sciatica pain is often related to an irritation of the lumbar spine (aka the low back). So if forward bending is causing/increasing your pain, it makes sense to do this less often.
There is a way to bend over without pain. It’s called hinging. This motion allows your spine to stay straight (or stiff) so that you can use your butt muscles to pick up any object off of the floor. Just like Chubbs says in Happy Gilmore, “It’s all in the hips”.
Action steps:This technique will allow you to safely and confidently pick things up from the floor. As you can see in the video, the torso moves at the level of the hip, and there is no rounding or excessive arching of the back.