6 Ways To Strengthen Your Pelvic Floor
The pelvic floor is a vital group of muscles that supports various organs within the pelvic area, strengthen your pelvic floor to maintain good pelvic health and prevent issues such as incontinence, prolapse, and pelvic pain.
If you’ve recently had a baby, you may find your pelvic floor is weaker due to the physical effects of dilation. Pelvic floor and deep abdominal exercises will help you return to your pre-pregnancy shape and assist with healing around any stitches you may have.
Strengthening exercises can be safely started one to two days following the birth of your baby, provided there is no increase in your pain.
In this blog post, we’ll explore the importance of pelvic floor health and provide practical tips to help you maintain a strong and functional pelvic floor.
1. Understand the Pelvic Floor:
Before diving into pelvic floor care, it’s crucial to understand the anatomy and function of this muscle group. The pelvic floor is a hammock-like structure of muscles that stretches across the bottom of the pelvis. Its primary functions include supporting pelvic organs, controlling bladder and bowel movements, and contributing to sexual function.
2. Pelvic Floor Exercises (Kegels):
Kegel exercises are one of the most effective ways to strengthen the pelvic floor muscles. To perform Kegels correctly, follow these steps:
- Identify the pelvic floor muscles: The next time you urinate, try to stop the flow of urine midstream. The muscles you use to do this are your pelvic floor muscles.
- Contract the muscles: Once you’ve identified the pelvic floor muscles, contract them for 3-5 seconds, then release.
- Repeat and progress: Start with 10 repetitions, and gradually increase the duration and number of repetitions over time.
3. Exercise Regularly:
Engaging in regular physical activity not only benefits your overall health but also contributes to a healthy pelvic floor. Activities like walking, swimming, and yoga can help strengthen your pelvic muscles and improve blood flow to the pelvic area.
4. Be Mindful of Lifting:
When lifting heavy objects, always engage your core muscles and avoid holding your breath. Instead, exhale as you lift and inhale as you release. This technique helps reduce pressure on the pelvic floor during lifting activities.
5. Maintain a Healthy Weight:
Excess weight can put additional pressure on the pelvic floor muscles, leading to problems like stress urinary incontinence. Adopt a balanced diet and regular exercise routine to maintain a healthy weight and support your pelvic floor health.
6. Avoid Straining:
Straining during bowel movements can weaken the pelvic floor muscles and cause issues like haemorrhoids or pelvic organ prolapse. Ensure you consume a high-fibre diet, stay hydrated, and avoid prolonged periods of sitting on the toilet.
Taking care of your pelvic floor is essential for overall well-being and quality of life. By incorporating pelvic floor exercises, maintaining proper posture, and adopting a healthy lifestyle, you can promote a strong and functional pelvic floor.
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