Are you doing your pelvic floor right now?
There’s no shortcut to a strong pelvic floor. (Annoying) fact.
So whether you’re pregnant or postnatal it is of vital importance that you make sure that you are actively working your pelvic floor every day. But we all know it’s the least likely thing to stay on the to do list when there’s a baby to see to and life and work have taken over the everyday once more. So here’s some reasons why you should put your kegels back on the list (and some tips on how to do them too!).
It’s important to keep your pelvic floor strong to prevent incontinence. Can’t argue with that. No one enjoys leaking when you laugh. Or those awkward moments on the trampoline at Baby Gym hey? Read on.
You can’t prevent prolapse - but you can contain it. A strong pelvic floor can improve and lift prolapse. If you’ve ever even thought about what prolapse actually is then this one is an absolute winner. And if you’ve experienced it in the slightest way then we know you’ll already be on board with this whole topic. Welcome friend.
A strong pelvic floor can improve your sex life by strengthening the intensity of your orgasm. That’s right. You’re welcome.
Strength in your pelvis can help to stabilise your back – helping to improve your posture and preventing back pain or injury.
If you are pregnant – the stronger your pelvic floor muscles, the shorter your second stage of labour. We know that got your attention.
We’re pretty certain that there were one or two reasons on that list for everyone to be listening very carefully now, so here’s some tips on the best way to start getting your daily workout up to scratch.
Basically there are two types of squeezes to try and do on a daily basis – quick ones and slow ones.
You should aim to do 10 x quick squeezes and 10 x slow ones. But you may need to work up to this so go at your own pace and listen to your body.
With the quick ones you are trying to pull up in one swift movement and then release them straight away. Some people prefer to start with the quick ones by way of warm up… but doing both is the key to really good results.
To do the slow ones you are looking to lift and hold your pelvic floor for up to 10 seconds and then slowly let it relax. Avoid ‘dropping’ it too quickly as you are looking for control here. Use your breath to help you but don’t force or hold your breath at any point.
If you are doing them correctly then your lower tummy might gently tense, but NOTHING else should move, lift or be visible. You should continue to breathe normally throughout and certainly not be holding your breath at any point.
Here at Bump to Cradle, we consider pelvic floor health to be so important that we dedicate a whole session to our women’s health physiotherapists who help all our pregnant mums to learn how to correctly engage and exercise their pelvic floors both during and after pregnancy. Sign up to the antenatal course right now to join the new parents network and show your pelvic floor some respect!