Fly by the seat of your pants into 2019

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Has Christmas taken its toll on your pelvic floor? Picking up children or grandchildren, standing at parties, lifting the turkey out of the oven, a dreaded cold or a sudden burst of laughter can stress the pelvic floor leading to leaks, congestion and pain. Start 2019 as you mean to go on and find your pelvic power.

In December we ran #PelvicAdvent in social media, a top tip for pelvic health everyday. I posted 24 little gold nuggets, the first 3 of which are in this article. If you hop over to our website, Instagram or Facebook feeds, you’ll find the rest of these daily tips supplemented with lovely videos, diagrams and photos.

So lets start at the beginning:
1. The pelvic floor holds stuff in and lets stuff
out, it has opposing actions. Therefore it
has to be elastic and adaptable, yet strong.
It is your floor, the core of your core, your
center of gravity, the seat of your pants,
sorry, did I say pants? I meant power.

As we get older our powers diminish, that’s why it is so important we stay fit and active for as long as possible. Physical strength and mobility are our best defense against the aging process.

It is no exaggeration to say that a healthy pelvic floor is a major factor in a healthy, happy you.

2. Let’s connect. Do you know what it feels
like to contract or lift your pelvic floor?
Imagine you are about to break wind and
a person you really fancy just walks into
the room. Yup, you got it! That’s your
pelvic floor.

Now what about relaxing or stretching your pelvic floor? Trickier, as we spend most of our day trying to hold stuff in. So, say the person you fancy doesn’t materialise and we can safely let the wind fly, that feeling of the bulge in the pelvic floor just prior to passing wind (or urinating) is your pelvic floor at its most relaxed. If you don’t feel confident in letting go, try this after emptying your bladder and do it lying down.

3. Sniff, Flop, Drop. Now add in the breath. If
you’re comfortable, go onto all fours or
into Child’s Pose. As you slowly inhale,
relax your belly letting it hang down (flop),
then allow the pelvic floor to gently
bulge (drop).

As you exhale feel a little lightening and lifting in the pelvic floor. Don’t try to contract or lift it yet. Most women with pelvic issues have short, tight and weak pelvic floors due to too much bracing and Kegel type exercises. So to begin with, we’re just going to work on connecting with the relaxation of the pelvic floor.

Pelvic health issues are physically and mentally wearing and debilitating, but we can help you feel stronger, gain in confidence and trust your body again.

Emma Wightman
Women’s health specialist Osteopath
www.the-sop.com
@stockbridgeosteopathy