Pelvic Floor - Part 1
Let's talk about pelvic floors.
Yes, the wonderful muscles and ligaments that support our internal organs, stopping them falling out. That have a key function for our bladder and bowel control. And of course, that play a paramount role in our sexual function - which, for many females, also include eventually getting the baby out nice and safe.
And hopefully, all of that without trauma or injury to the muscles themselves.
(Yes, I know, the baby sometimes needs to come out "via the sun roof", we will talk about that on a different occasion).
Who here has a concern about their pelvic floor for any reason?
I think it's safe to say many of us do, and many of us don't talk about it.
Let's address this.
Pelvic floor is an amazing piece of bio-mechanical engineering. It actually consists of two supportive structures - the muscle and ligament "sling", a hammock that supports things, keeps things in place when needed, and letting things out when needed.
But also the sphincter muscles that control the openings and closing of passages.
What are we normally told to do when we feel our pelvic floors aren't as good as they should be?
Oooh, of course, Kegel exercises, right?! Squeeze, squeeze, squeeze. Maybe breathe and squeeze. Maybe breathe, contract tummy, squeeze the pelvic floor. Squeeze 10 sets of 10, long or short squeezes, sitting at a desk, in your car, in secret, no-one will know, keep it to yourself, get "fit down there" quietly.... Who has heard that?
How well does this work for us?
Not very, and not that often, it has to be said. We are then told that we don't do it well, often enough, for long enough, etc etc etc. Like it always comes back to us, typically.
Out comes a pad, a ring pessary, or a consultation with a surgeon.
Did you ever consider that it is not you - that doing kegels just as prescribed can actually not be doing anything much for your body, or making the problem WORSE?
There is another way.
We have to appreciate that pelvic floors are not an isolated body part that can be exercised in isolation. In fact pelvic floors are seamlessly integrated into the rest of our body - most of the time they are our last line of defence, taking a hit from our posture, breathing patterns, core strength, rib mobility....
Do we really think we can "squeeze our way" out of whole body posture challenges where our pelvic floor is holding on for dear life, where above the waist things are not doing all that well?
It is a bit like polishing the wheels of a car until they are shiny, but the suspension is suspect, there is no oil in the engine, the gearbox is making funny noises and steering is locking up. Nice wheels, but will we get anywhere?
Same with pelvic floors. Get your whole car sorted out. Breathing, core strength, good alignment, mobility, movement... Your pelvic floor will respond.
No need for squeezes. Integrate it into your daily movement routine, challenge it, and you will arrive to your destination safe and well.
Next time, I will talk about why kegels might actually make your pelvic problem problem WORSE.
If you have a concern over your pelvic floor health, tried Kegels that did not work, or have a questions that you would like answered, get in touch so we can chat about your health objectives.
07768 135481 firstname.lastname@example.org To your health,
Image credit - Matthew Henry