The pelvic floor is an extremely important network of muscles at the base of the spine that creates a hammock of support for the internal organs in the torso. As women we may have heard of the importance of pelvic floor tone for better sex (many of us have heard of kegels), but pelvic floor muscles are infinitely more important than that. They are helping hold all of our insides in. As the pelvic floor muscles lose their strength and tone we can start to experience issues like incontinence or worse.
Pelvic floor is a key piece during pregnancy and postpartum. During pregnancy, labor and childbirth the ability of the pelvic floor to lengthen and make space for baby’s descent is of utmost importance. Postpartum, after the muscles have overstretched, it becomes important to reintegrate the muscles and ensure their strength. This focus on pelvic floor is one of the great benefits of yoga for women during pregnancy and postpartum, and is one of the reasons to seek out yoga classes specific to this time in motherhood (curious about other reasons postpartum yoga can help with recovery? Read my blog post).
Ideally, 5 minutes of pelvic floor muscles per day can help bring tone back to the pelvic floor. However, if there was significant birth trauma to the area, I highly recommend seeking out a trained PT to help with your recovery. In fact, every woman should see a pelvic floor specialist postpartum if they can.
To begin doing some work on your pelvic floor at home, use these two exercises. Begin with the first, and once you feel you have mastered it, move on to the second.
Accessing and working with the pelvic floor
Integrating pelvic floor lifts with abdominal contractions
Wisdom and insight with a dash of humor to help guide you on your journey through motherhood.