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Pelvic Floor Dysfunction

Kegels & Pelvic Floor Dysfunction.

One of my passions as a private yoga teacher is to empower people with the tools to improve their pelvic floor function.  As you might imagine, I support a lot of new mums but it can happen to anyone.

Pelvic floor dysfunction is the term given to any problem associated with the pelvic floor and can happen when the muscles become too weak or tight.

Pelvic floor weakness is a little more well-known and can include symptoms like stress incontinence and organ prolapse.

The usual protocol for strengthening weak pelvic floor muscles is to practice Kegels (pelvic floor exercises).

Logically, it makes sense – after all, if you want to strengthen your biceps you would do lots of bicep curls right?

Unfortunately, it isn’t that simple.

Kegels do have a place but form only part of the jigsaw puzzle.

yoga for pelvic floor and core

Re-Defining a Strong Pelvic Floor

To get the full picture we need to redefine what it means to have a strong, functional pelvic floor.

Strong has the image of being firm, rigid, and hard.

When it comes to the pelvic floor muscles this analogy is not helpful.

I mentioned above, that pelvic floor dysfunction can occur if the muscles are too tight as well as too weak.  Tight doesn’t necessarily mean strong.

For the pelvic floor muscles to truly be healthy and functional they need to be able to move and respond to the demands set upon them.

If you look at the table below it explains the symptoms that can arise with both a weak and over tight pelvic floor.

pelvic floor dysfunction



“A pelvic floor that is too rigid, and tight is weak, not strong just as in the case of the overly slack pelvic floor.   Both cause pelvic floor dysfunction.”


Yoga & Fixing Pelvic Floor Dysfunction

So now we have seen what happens when the pelvic floor is too tight or too slack, what can we do to improve things?

The simple answer is to learn a little about the mechanics of breathing.

The pelvic floor muscles are part of an elaborate pressure system that includes the abdominal and the diaphragm. The muscles work together to respond to the change in inward pressure caused by the action of breathing.

If you wish to dive deeper read these earlier blogs that go into more detail:

Yoga for The Pelvic Floor and Core

The Key to a Healthy Pelvic Floor

When the pelvic floor experiences load (which happens when we inhale), its job is to release and stretch so that our organs and diaphragm can move down easily.

When it has less load, (which happens when we exhale) its job is to recoil in, to close the gap as the diaphragm and organs move back up.

The pelvic floor muscles also need to respond quickly to sharp changes in load such as when we cough or sneeze.

If the muscles are too loose or tight it will not be able to rebound easily and that is when we get the horrible symptoms listed above.

A strong pelvic floor, therefore, can do both – release and recoil.  Rebound and stretch.


Yoga is the perfect movement practice to support this complex pressure system for one simple reason – diaphragmatic breathing.

Try This Simple Yoga Breathing Exercise For The Pelvic Floor

Diaphragmatic breathing is the bread and butter of yoga – it is the foundation of everything we do from the poses, breathing (pranayama), relaxation and meditation practices.

When we breathe using the diaphragm we are supporting healthy pelvic floor function.  The pelvic floor will release on the inhale and contract on the exhale.    Try it for yourself below and take your first step into enjoying a life where you are not dealing with accidental leaks or other unpleasant symptoms⬇️⬇️


Reading to Learn More?

Private Yoga

If you work with me privately, I will create a tailored programme that will teach you the tools to get your pelvic floor working well again.  Contact me here to arrange a taster session (half the price of a single session) and let’s get you back in control of your life again.

Pelvic Floor And Core Workshop

Join me for my next workshop. Find out more and sign up here.


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