Piriformis Self-administered Dynamic Release a.k.a. Pin & Stretch

Piriformis Self-administered Dynamic Release a.k.a. Pin & Stretch

This is Brent of the Brookbush Instititue and in this video we’re bringing you advanced self-administered release techniques. In
this particular video, we’re going to go over piriformis dynamic release, or pin
and stretch technique. Now, the piriformis created a little bit of a logistics
problem for self-administered dynamic release. Two reasons. Number one, it’s a
fairly thin band-like muscle and it’s deep to the gluteus maximus, which is a
fairly thick muscle, so I had to find something that was going to have a small
enough surface area so that I can get the pressure per square inch to get deep
to the glute max while still maintaining my perpendicular width, so that I could
block the adhesive tissue as I pull the muscle fibers through. That’s when I
happened to come across these massage therapy balls from Trigger Point. This is a 5 inch multi-density foam ball. They work quite well. I will warn you guys,
once again, these dynamic release, or pin and stretch techniques are a progression
from static release techniques. One of the reasons being is for this particular
video, this is not nice. This is going to be fairly firm and
cause a fairly large amount of discomfort. I wouldn’t start with this. I
would want to progress up to this if somebody’s already started to
desensitize and started to release some of those very active trigger points that they
started with. I’m going to have my friend, Melissa, come out. She’s going to help me
demonstrate this technique. Now, your piriformis, once again, is a
horizontal band of tissue that goes from tailbone to greater trochanter. So this
is like a horizontal line across the top of your backside, but it’s deep to your
glutes. So, you’re going to go ahead and sit on
that foam ball. We’re going to start on her right cheek. Notice that she’s down on her
elbows so that she’s a little bit more stable. And then we’re going to take this
leg and we’re going to have her put her ankle up on her knee. Now, what that does
is it lengthens the glute max, so that if that muscle’s lengthened, it’s also a little
bit thinner. It also gets me ready to put my piriformis on stretch. Now, I’m going to have you find the most
tender spot horizontally across the top of your backside. She can go from from
her tailbone all the way out almost to the side of her hip, just posterior
to her greater trochanter. Got it? Alright, so once she finds that most
tender spot, just like all of our other dynamic release or pin and stretch
techniques, I’m going to have her go just distal to that spot. This means just
closer to the greater trochanter so that she just rolls to the lateral side of
that adhesion. You there? You’re now going to take this hand and
you’re going to grab this knee. How you feeling? And she’s
going to pull with her arm, get a good stretch on that piriformis, hold for 2 to 5
seconds, and relax. Make sure she’s still got the spot, she’s
still got the adhesion. Once again, pull through. So all we’re doing, guys, is using
that massage ball to block the adhesive tissue as she then stretches
her piriformis and pulls the muscle fibers through that adhesive tissue,
hopefully increasing our functional extensibility. She’s going to do ten to fifteen reps. As
you can see, you guys, this is, once again, not nice. This is going to cause a fair amount of
discomfort, so you need to start with those static release techniques using
something like a Trigger Point Roll, or a softer medicine ball. Make sure that you
tone down some of those active trigger points, desensitize the area a little bit
first, and then you can work on some more of these fascially based techniques
increasing functional extensibility. I might have somebody on a foam roll for
four to six weeks before I even introduce this technique. You ready for
the other side? Good. Of course, after I did this
technique, I would want to see some sort of improvement in my movement patterns.
To give you guys an idea, if I was doing an overhead squat assessment, I might
release the piraformis if I saw somebody who had knees bow out. If I was doing goniometric assessment, I can actually make a good argument for a
decrease in internal rotation or decrease in external rotation in goniometry, so I would want to retest those. I make sure that if I’m going to subject
my client or patient to this technique, which is a little uncomfortable, that I
am getting good results from it. I hope you guys enjoy using the new massage
therapy balls. I think you guys will find they’re wonderful for all sorts of techniques. I
hope you find good results from dynamic, or pin and stretch technique for the
piriformis. I look forward to hearing about your results.

15 Replies to “Piriformis Self-administered Dynamic Release a.k.a. Pin & Stretch”

  1. Wow, this feels great! I am using a lacrosse ball because that is what I have been using for awhile now. That pull across works wonders. Will check out the other therapy balls. Thanks, Brent.

  2. Awesome, defintley need to release by glute med, tfl, piriformis region. Been smashing with a lacrosse ball and it kills (should have sensitized it first huh).

  3. I have mild sciatica and doing any release on the piriformis tends to easily aggravate the sciatic nerve and cause symptoms like numb foot. What's the best route to avoid this or maybe a progression perhaps? Thanks for the ideas!

  4. I really enjoy these videos, but on these type of videos can you talk about what pain symtoms you are trying to fix on each one.

  5. Thank you sir for the video. but I have some question.
    The piriformis function is doing external rotation but why the stretching position (4 alike legs) do an external rotation on hip like its action?
    help me for more understanding. thanks

  6. This is great, thank you. I usually use a lacrosse ball and/or foam roller on this area and QL trigger points. Should I invest it other materials? I had a big lower back injury around 2 and a half months ago, currently seeing a Chiro and adapting my exercise….the trigger/release technique is so important and I am doing it 2-3 times a day. I have such a lot of discomfort that if I don't do this, my lower back is even more stiff than it has been. I think I am still recovering but certainly videos like this really help 🙂

  7. Being that the Sciatic nerve runs directly under the Piriformis, do you have any recommendations on ball density or placement for this technique to prevent unwanted, indirect compression of the nerve?

  8. Brent, I have this kind of issue with the siatica / pirformis muscle; I've been using your technique for a few days now. You mentioned it could take 6-8 weeks for relief. My question is, is the pain I feel now after the routine, is that normal – Thanks

  9. I’ve been dealing with piriformis pain for well over a year and most recently pain has returned. I just followed these instructions and it’s an instant feel better after. Thank you ☺️

  10. Could anyone help? I'm a ultrarunner that's stuck in an evil cycle with my piriformis (started as IT band issue). I've been through PT twice. They said I needed to strengthen glutes to stop putting load on the piriformis. However, the many months of strengthening (glute work) just irritate it more and i'm constantly having to ice if I do any glute work at all. The PT also helped me fix my posture a bit so my one hip isn't going into so much of an external rotation. When I lay down and look down at my feet, the affected side has my foot laying all the way down to the ground (splay) while the other side is normal. I also have a snapping hip on the bad side (both sides but one resolved). I've rolled for MONTHS with the orange triggerpoint roller, tennis balls, soccer balls, lacrosse balls and the triggerpoint ball. I try to stretch it with the laying eye of the needle piriformis release (ankle over knee, pull up) that my PT recommended as well as the piriformis stretches that my U.S.-olympics-team chiropractor recommeded. I've had psoas release done, cupping, acupuncture….. I can't figure out for the life of me how to get my piriformis to calm the heck down. Squatting causes a lot of pain in the affected side. I don't know whether to stretch or not stretch, strengthen or just leave it alone.

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