The Pelvic Floor

The pelvic floor is part of the pelvic core and forms the base with the diaphragm at the top, the transverse abdominus as a cylindrical corset and the multifidus running up the back of the spine. The PF is more than just a sling of muscle running from the coccyx to the pubic bone. It has to support the bladder, bowel and the uterus in the female. Pregnancy, childbirth, hormonal changes including pre and post menopause, lifting, running can all put pressure on the PF. It’s enough for a laugh,a sneeze or cough to result in a bit of stress incontinence and consequently a dribble!

Pelvic floor exercises are therefore important to practice in moderation and are not difficult to do.

Sit tall, shoulders back, maintaining the curve in your lower back. Lift and squeeze inwardly through your openings running sequentially from your back (anus) to your middle (vagina) to your front (urethra). keep breathing throughout then relax and release from your front, middle and back passages. Don’t squeeze your buttocks, thighs or tummy when doing this. men, you just have 2 openings (anus and urethra) but can imagine a third.

Supine: lie on your back, knees bent, feet hip width apart. Inhale and raise arms to ceiling palms facing inwards maintaining rib to pelvis connection. Exhale, turn palms down and lower arms to your side. Repeat this movement, but as you lower your arms down to your side close (squeeze and draw up inwardly) from your tail bone to pubic bone and even higher, then release as you raise arms back up on the inhale. repeat 5 – 10 times.

Standing: Place small ball between legs above the knee. Imagine you are drawing the pubic bone up and away from the ball. Consciously lower and relax. Repeat the imagined lift. Breathe normally.

Pelvic Core