5 Care Tips: Sacrum
The sacrum is a large, triangular-shaped bone at the bottom of the spine that connects the spine to the pelvis. The sacrum houses the sacral plexus, a major cluster of nerves that control bowel and bladder function as well as orgasm. Injuries to the sacrum often create nerve damage.
1. Bone Building Foods
The sacrum is one of the densest bones in the body, and it will keep its strength and power if you eat plenty of bone-healthy foods. Calcium-rich foods like yogurt, almond butter, figs, and dark leafy greens like kale, collard greens, and bok choy are great for feeding the bones. Vitamin C—think oranges and grapefruits—helps prevent bone loss. Make sure you get enough magnesium and potassium (sweet potatoes are a good source) as well.
2. Embrace Balance
The sacrum is all about balance and symmetry, and it’s easy for us to get out of whack. Look at your daily routines: Do you have a bag that always sits over one shoulder? Do your sacrum a favor and get a backpack to spread that weight evenly. Do you always cross the same leg when you’re sitting at your desk? Do you always carry your baby on one hip? Mix it up for sacrum health.
The sacral chakra is said to be located in line with the sacrum in the center of the pelvis. This energy center is related to sexuality, sensuality, pleasure, affection, creativity, and the ability to create life.
3. Connect with Sacral Energy
The sacrum is the location of the sacral chakra, which is related to our sexuality, sensuality, creativity, and intimate relationships. Take some time to connect with this energy center by sitting comfortably and placing your palms over your low belly inline with your sacrum. Relax the lower belly and breathe deeply into the space behind your hands, allowing any thoughts or emotions to simply rise and fall. You may like to write down anything you noticed afterward.
The sacrum bone is so dense that it takes longer to decompose than other bones in the body. As a result, many ancient traditions had particular reverence for the sacrum, considering it to have special powers.
4. Strengthen the Glutes
One of the best ways to soothe sacral pain is to strengthen the glutes and outer hips. Here’s one way to do that: Lie on your side with your knees together. Gently engage your core and extend your top leg. Flex the foot and point the foot slightly down, so that the leg is internally rotated. Lift the leg straight up, then lower it down. Aim for 20 repetitions, but start with five or ten if your muscles get fatigued. You can follow this exercise with the Thread the Needle Pose from No. 5.
The sacrum is a little wider and more flexible in women than men so that women can bear children. Sometimes people get lower back pain because the sacrum has “nodded” a little too far in one direction or because of sitting asymmetrically. This is more likely in women, especially during pregnancy and menstruation.
5. Stop Sciatica
The sacrum is the location of the sciatic nerve, which can get pinched by the piriformis muscle, causing a shooting sensation down the leg. Severe cases of sciatica can be debilitating. One of the best tools to prevent sciatica is the Thread the Needle pose.
Lie on your back and then place your right ankle on your left thigh. Gently press the right knee away from your face, and if it feels okay, bring the left leg in by holding onto the thigh (right hand would go between the legs). If you rock the legs slightly to the left, you may feel the hip opening a bit more intensely and closer to the piriformis. Stay for 5–10 breaths, then switch sides.
- by Julie Peters