Exercise and physical activity

Exercise and physical activity

Your healthcare professional should explain that exercise and movement may help ease the symptoms of low back pain and sciatica. They should discuss with you what types of exercise may be right for you, and which you prefer. They should give you some guidance or tell you who to talk to about this. They may refer you for an exercise programme.

If other treatments haven't helped and your pain hasn't gone away, your doctor may arrange for you to attend other sessions. These may include a mix of physical exercise and other types of support to help you cope with symptoms and enjoy a better quality of life.

Health staff should not treat your back pain or sciatica with equipment such as belts, corsets, foot supports or shoes with special soles. They should not offer you acupuncture, traction (stretching the back using weights or machines), or electrotherapy (passing electric current or ultrasound waves through the body).

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