Well, good news for you, you can technically strengthen your pelvic floor while doing all of these activities, if you so choose. And if you’re wondering what pelvic floor strength is good for in the first place, and if you need to worry about that personally, we are here to say it is certainly a point and yes you probably do.
This is a subject that is very close to my heart. That’s why I turned to Janaki Amin, PT, DPT, CFMT, who has been working in the pelvic health field since 2015. Full Disclosure: She’s my very own pelvic floor physiotherapist.
I found her a few years ago after laparoscopic surgery to remove a cyst from my ovary caused problems with the pelvic floor, and she was a godsend. When I booked my first appointment, I discovered something that caught my eye: there are tons of pelvic floor PTs in New York City, and all of them are booked weeks or sometimes months in advance.
In other words, pelvic floor physiotherapy is something that many, many women need – and very few women talk about. I start the conversation.
Amin tells us everything we need to know in order to maintain and maintain a strong and healthy pelvic floor.
Should I exercise my pelvic floor from home?
Anytime is a good time to take care of our body. Our body functions as a whole or as the sum of many parts. In order to be able to work on the pelvic floor from home, one must understand the function of the pelvic floor and its connectivity.
The pelvic floor muscles are responsible for the continence – bladder and bowel – as well as the ability to have painless intercourse and orgasms. They also play an important role in maintaining our postural and pressure systems.
There are many myths about the pelvic floor. For example: “Leak is normal after birth. “It is considered normal immediately after birth – not months and years after birth.
Another: “Painful sex is normal after birth or ever.” Sex doesn’t have to be painful. There is help for such problems.
Another: “Just do Kegels and you’ll be fine.” It is important that a physical exam be done [first] to see if your pelvic floor muscles are tight or loose. If they’re on one end of the spectrum, they can cause incontinence and symptoms of pain.
An exam shows whether you need kegels for strengthening or relaxation exercises for extension and subsequent strengthening. There is no one size fits all.
Someone might be tight, others might be loose, and some might have a mix of the two. Imagine the tightness of your upper back after a stressful week at work. When you foam roll your back to release tension, you can feel the knots in these muscles. Pelvic floor muscles are muscles and [react] similar to stress.
Another myth about the pelvic floor: “Go home and have some wine. You have to relax. ”That’s the worst! ask questions [when you go to see a pelvic floor specialist]If this is the answer your provider gives you, find another provider.
We hear about exercising our pelvic floors and doing kegels, but there is a right and wrong way to do that, right?
A proper Kegel involves contracting the muscles, relaxing to the baseline, and then being able to lengthen the muscles. Each muscle should be able to tighten, return to the baseline, and elongate past the baseline.
Often times, when they are unaware of these contractions, people compensate by squeezing their buttocks or leg muscles to contract the pelvic floor. Often times, when people are asked to squeeze, they compensate for it by primarily pushing their abs.
The pelvic floor muscles, like any other muscle in our body, should be able to work in coordination with other parts of the body and at the same time distance themselves from other muscles.
For some reason Not A good idea to exercise our pelvic floors from home?
[There is] There’s nothing wrong with exercising your pelvic floor at home – but each person has different challenges, and when possible, a personal exam would be invaluable in creating a personalized program [to start out].
Given the current challenges, pelvic health specialists can also provide telemedicine guides to personalize programs for each person.
There are physical devices that women can use to “train” their pelvic floor, including the Elvie Trainer and the Lelo Smart Bead. What do you think of this? Recommend or no?
It’s hard to recommend a trainer. Everyone has their own challenges. There’s nothing like getting personal feedback with your fingers. If that’s a challenge then you depend on coaches, dilators, or wands.
But here too you first and foremost have to find out what your pelvic floor is like at rest: tight, loose or a mixture. For example, is it lacking coordination with your diaphragm – breathing coordination – or cannot it detach itself from your glutes? Exercises and tools will also depend on what your main complaint is.
Can we still edit something from home?
Learning a little more about sitting would make a world of difference while we are now forced to work from home. Here is a video with great suggestions on how to make your home environment a good work environment for your body.
Our posture, whether we are sitting or standing, should be balanced across our pelvic floors.
Pelvic floor exercises are generally associated with either better orgasms or incontinence problems. Can Pelvic Floor Exercise Really Help With These Things?
Absolutely! Treatment of the pelvic floor should be the focus Why The incontinence problems are there. Is it a muscle imbalance or a pressure system problem? For example, do you suffer from incontinence when jumping, sneezing or running?
Or do you have it when your bladder is full and you hear water trickling or opening the door to the bathroom or your home? One is caused by stress and the other is caused by urge. If you have both, then it’s mixed incontinence.
Again, the treatment and exercises will depend on which one you have. The answer is usually never as simple as “Do your Kegels”.
It is important to analyze the driver of your problems. Women who have children or who do not have children may have some or all of the above. The same is true for women who had a vaginal birth compared to a caesarean section.
When the muscles are tense, we work on relaxing the muscles to bring them to better length so that we can retrain and strengthen them. If the muscles are too loose, the right kegels will work for you.
If your left side is tight and your right side is loose, how do you train that? Some pointers from your pelvic health specialist would be the way to go. And we haven’t even talked about posture! How you are positioned makes a huge difference.
What’s the best way to find a good provider?
If you are looking for a pelvic floor specialist, Amin recommends visiting the International Pelvic Pain Society, the Academy of Pelvic Health Physical Therapy, and the Herman & Wallace Pelvic Rehabilitation Institute for more resources.
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