Most helpful positive review
36 of 36 people found the following review helpful
IT HAS POTENTIAL TO HELP PIRIFORIS SYNDROME; NOT HARD TO DO
on February 8, 2011
In hopes of controlling the pain from my sciatic problem, I decided to check out this DVD in spite of its mixed reviews.
Kathi Casey's three exercises (combined with deep breathing to bring oxygen to the area of concern) are designed to stretch the piriformis muscle that goes across the butt (as well as other muscles). When that muscle gets tense or tight, it puts pressure on the sciatic nerve and causes pain. In some cases of sciatica, the pain is relieved or avoided by the stretching of this muscle. She advocates doing the exercise program daily, whether a sciatic problem is active or not.
One Amazon reviewer focused on how impossible it is for the average person to do these exercises. After reviewing the DVD, I find that assessment very puzzling. First of all, Casey makes it clear that you do not need to do all three exercises, but just one or two of them. Secondly, she shows variations of the first two in order to accommodate different fitness levels. I am 65 years old, do not have a flexible body, and have not done a regular yoga routine in 35 years. I have no trouble doing at least "very modified" versions of her first two exercises (not always bending as far forward as she does, etc.), and doing her third exercise sufficiently. If someone is "heavy-set" and/or has a REALLY inflexible body, maybe they can't do any of these exercises (as modified), but I have to imagine that most people can do at least one or two of them (as modified).
Kathi Casey, who demonstrates the exercises, is not a super-model and the DVD, while "adequate," is not some hi-tech production filmed on the shores of Hawaii. WHO CARES? The film quality is reasonable, the purpose behind the exercises is well explained, and the exercises are sufficiently demonstrated, with very good instructions. And if they work....well, they work. That is what is important to me.
I just got the DVD from Amazon and watched a couple of times, while doing the exercises. Frankly, my sciatic problem is caused by a herniated disc, so I am not sure how much it will be helped by stretching the piriformis muscle. For people whose sciatic problem is caused by a tight piriformis muscle (piriformis syndrome), this DVD would progbably be more helpful. I would guess that stretching the piriformis muscle, and other muscles the exercises relate to, would be helpful "to some degree" for anyone that has sciatica. (Another DVD that would probably be more helpful for bulging or herniated disc and sciatica [among other back problems] is "Yoga Therapy for Back Pain" with Emily Kligerman. Some of Kligerman's poses are similar to stretches given to me by my chiropractor & my osteopathic physician, just with more movement and less time "holding" the position.)