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Prolapse and pelvic floor dysfunction/weakness.

Dealing with women now predominetly since I became a trainer and certainly as a online trainer ive developed more trust and understanding into how many women have had a minor prolapse post pregnancy and as we age – perhaps before or after the monepause.

In fact up to 50 per cent of women have had a prolapse to some degree,

A pelvic organ prolapse happens when 1 or more organs slips down and bulges into the vagina.

It can be the womb, bladder or bowel or the top of the vagina that drops down.

Every women is different and its important you dont compare your prolapse or pelvic dysfunction to another persons, always seek the advice of a GP or physio who can advise you further as sometimes a operation is on the only way forward

Symptoms vary but you will notice perhaps

• A dragging feeling

• Pain or discomfort during sex

• Heaviness into your womb or vagina

• A bulge or lump visible from your vagina

One of the first pieces of advice your gp will give you is ensure you keep to a health bmi – being overweight can make things worse

Avoid jumping or heaving lifting – however we dont want to avoid using resistance if we had a prolapse in our 20s and now in our 30s (if we can manage symptoms we should) most women that suffer will know what will make it worse – eg excessive walking, jumping, sneezing.

Its important you modify and work with your body as nobody knows it better than you – use a band rather than a heavy dumbell and perform a dead bug rather than a plank, there’s many ways we can work around injuries and weakness without eliminating exercise altogether.

My advice is to see a women’s health physiotherapist and manage your prolapse with their guidance, avoid running choosing to walk

On days you feel you need to take it easier perform body weight movements, or modify by doing a sit to stand rather than a squat etc.limit your time on your feet – rest periods you can do seated for example,

Pelvic floor weakness I think its most women especially after having had children.

Even I felt it harder to connect to my pelvic floor or feel it working post Idris, I needed to work on my mind to muscle connection doing kegals and isolated breathing techniques to regain the sensation of contracting my pelvic floor.

Women’s bodies are amazing and I have total respect to my vagina for pushing out four babies and allowing me to squat heavy as well as jump.

But everyone will benefit from practising breathing techniques that we perform in mobility or pilates and isolating the pelvic floor and performing kegals.

if you suffer pelvic floor dysfunction dont suddenly go all out, ive had many reports from clients in the past that they went all out on kegals and it made things worse so build up slowly

Slow twitch muscle fibres

Aim to lift and close – think lift, drawing up a marble, pulling up a tie on a purse, its not a clench of the buttocks but as if your stopping yourself doing a poo.

hold until you feel the sensation weaken – then release wait 10 seconds and repeat aim to do until you can’t do anymore or if you can aim for 8.

Fast twitch

Aim to do as many as possible until you feel weakness or you can’t pull up that imaginary marble see if you can aim for 8

rest as needed and aim to do 1, 2 or 3 sets.

build up slowly eg 5 x 5 x 1 set then 8x 8 x 2 etc

Don’t do them while weeing – this is old school outdated advice as its linked to urinary incontinence

•Modify as needed

Things to be mindful of

Lifting overhead places more emphasis on the pelvic floor, listen out for alternatives but a lateral raise, front raise for example may feel much better for you

Avoid jumping and running – walk or squat instead if you have a prolapse

Plank – try short periods either with PF dysfunction or a prolapse but I recommend to avoid full planks and try hand elevated planks or knee planks – mountain climber for example try on a chair,

•listen to your own body – paying close attention to your pelvic floor muscles

• Seek medical advice rather than self diagnose, sometimes they are able to prescribe hormone treatment or get it fixed surgically.

Hope this helps as many people find it hard to talk about vaginas – but like biceps your pelvic floor are a muscles!

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