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Pilates for Incontinence

February 25, 2018
Alicia Jamous 0 comment(s)
25-02-2018

Are you getting up to the toilet constantly and always in fear of leakage? Incontinence or the lack of control of urine outflow can be a very stressful and anxiety provoking matter. No one wants to

live a life where they are in constant fear of leaking. Did you know that something can be done about this? Something that can reduce your incidence of leaking and those embarrassing accidents.

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Why does it happen to me?

To understand what can be done, first, we need to understand why it happens? What causes those unwanted leaking and those embarrassing moments? Our urinary system works by our kidney

producing urine when we have excess fluids, this urine slowly fills our bladder; when our bladder gets full, we go to the toilet and excrete the urine. Now there are many ways that this journey can

go wrong. In our case, we want to talk about incontinence. Urinary incontinence happens when we have unwanted accidents in-between bathroom breaks secondary to increased pressure on our

bladder. This usually occurs after we sneeze, jump or even cough. The increased pressure isn’t necessarily because our bladder is full but because we don’t have good control of those muscles that

keep the urine in the bladder until we are ready to excrete it. Have you heard of your pelvic floor? Well, those are the muscles that are often weak when we have

issues with incontinence. You may have heard of the kegel exercise to help your pelvic floor and aid with incontinence but the kegel exercise is only part of your pelvic health. If you haven’t heard

of it before, Pilates is a great form of exercise that can help restore your core muscles while engaging your pelvic floor, pelvis and back. All of these areas are essential when we start to talk

about incontinence and prevention of those unwanted leaks. Pilates and engagement of those pelvic muscles can help you feel well, move more and live free!

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Top 3 Exercises to Help You with Your Stress Incontinence:

Before we even start to think about exercises, first we need to make sure we know how to contract or switch on our pelvic floor muscles. The best way to do this is to think about squeezing your

muscles as if you have a full bladder, need to go to the bathroom, but aren’t quite there. Your pelvic floor is bound to switch on along with your core and other surrounding muscles. Once you have the idea and

the idea and have practised that, give the below three exercises a go!

Roll Down

The roll down is a great exercise to get your body moving segmentally as you train your pelvic floor to do the same. Ever hear of the elevator exercise for your pelvic floor? Well,

this pilates based exercise is designed to allow your spine to move segmentally while strength training your pelvic floor. With this exercise you want your spine to unravel one

segment at a time starting with your neck and ending with your low back. While doing this think of drawing up your pelvic floor muscles up an elevator. To do this draw the pelvic floor

muscles up and in, then stop and hold the contraction at the ‘first floor’ then carry on up the elevator drawing in the pelvic floor further- stop at the second floor and so on. In no time

you will be able to do the roll down while controlling that pelvic floor.

img_7937Clam

The clam is a great exercise to get your glutes and pelvic stabilising muscles to work together to help you with maintaining that strong pelvic region. Incontinence is mainly controlled by

your pelvic floor muscles but is also supported by your glutes, deep core and pelvic stabilisers.

Corkscrew

Ever find that when you relax, so does your pelvic floor muscles, potentially leading to some unwanted leaking? Well, the corkscrew exercise is perfect for retraining your pelvic floor

while relaxing/getting rid of those unwanted stresses in the remaining muscles in your body. As you take a deep breath in allow your pelvic core muscles to contract, BUT keep hold of them as you

breathe out and relax the rest of your body.




About the author

Alicia Jamous

I qualified as a physiotherapist a number of years ago now with a Doctorate in Physiotherapy from Boston, Massachusetts in the USA. Love brought me to Manchester from the US, and I have been happily settled in the UK since! I have great passion for Pilates because of the amazing effect it has on your body. I feel great energy after a good session and I really enjoy meeting the wonderful people at my classes! I cater for all abilities - from people who have never exercised before to elite athletes. If you can’t find me at work you can find me out on a run, hanging out with family/friends or looking up her next beach holiday spot (or at a Pilates class of course!)

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