The Pelvic floor is a layer of muscles that supports the pelvic organs, these organs are the bladder, bowel and uterus in women and the bladder and bowel in men.
So what does the pelvic floor muscles do?
- The pelvic floor muscles provides support to the organs that lie on it
- Strong pelvic floor muscles gives us control over the bladder and bowel
- Important for sexual function
- In women provides support for the baby during pregnancy and assist in child birth
- The muscles of the pelvic floor work with the abdominal and back muscles to stabilize and support the spine.
Did you know …
Urinary incontinence is a sign of pelvic floor weakness and affects up to 37% of women in Australia!
How can I strengthen my pelvic floor muscles?
To start with you want to make sure your muscles of the thighs, buttocks and stomach are relaxed and now you want to imagine you are trying to stop yourself from going to the toilet so you are squeezing and lift (you should feel a lifting sensation). Once you have got this you want to hold it for 8 seconds before relaxing and repeating the process. You want to repeat this process 3 times while lying down, sitting and standing if possible
While doing pelvic floor muscle training:
- keep breathing;
- only squeeze and lift;
- do NOT tighten your buttocks; and
- keep your thighs relaxed.
Pilates practices a lot of pelvic floor training as it’s essential that you contract these muscles before starting each exercise.