Introducing the pelvic floor

The pelvic floor muscles exist in both men and women…….. honestly they do!!

The role of the pelvic floor is to keep organs such as your bowel and bladder in position; especially on movements that cause an increase in intra-abdominal pressure like lifting, sneezing and carrying. The pelvic floor needs to be effective when passing urine or a bowel movement and in maintaining an erection or vaginal sensations.

The pelvic floor muscles are a sling like structure that passes between the pubic bone to the rectum (front and back passage).

From reading so far, I am sure you can tell your pelvic floor is an important piece of kit to look after!

So how do I know if my pelvic floor is working?… I hear you ask!

Try these steps to help you find yours.

  • Get comfortable either sitting or standing.
  • Imagine that you are trying to stop yourself from passing wind and urine at the same time. Draw the pelvic floor muscle upwards and forwards away from the bowel – as if your reaching them to the tip of your chin.
  • Try not to hold your breath or squeeze your buttocks or legs together.
  • Now fully relax your pelvic floor and tummy muscles before having another go.

To improve your pelvic floor strength, try the above steps with 10 long squeezes (aim to hold for 10 seconds each) followed by 10 short squeezes. Make sure that you completely relax your pelvic floor and tummy muscles between each squeeze.

Always go to your GP if you are concerned about urinary/bowel incontinence or if you get pain on trying these exercises.