The female pelvic floor

This is a video that shows the anatomy of the female pelvic floor. It shows the complex interweaving of an array of different muscles that work together in synergy to create strength, movement and function – post pregnancy, post birth and post forceps these muscles can be torn/ripped or cut and this can cause pelvic floor dysfunction. Kegels alone stand no long term chance of working, as they work only on one set of muscles within the whole working group. Hypopressives use your whole body, your whole pelvic floor, breath and alignment to help the muscles that have been damaged learn to work in harmony again. Come to a class and see for yourself.

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From the picture you can see the relationship between the diaphragm and the pelvic floor. If you utilise this connection properly you can be working and strengthening your core and pelvic floor throughout your whole day! Let me break it down for you:breathe_titledMany of us with our busy lives and the stress of money and the limited time we perceive that we have despite the technology that we now own that was supposed to allow us more time and freedom – which ultimately has tied us down more (but that’s for another rant at another time!!) – have forgotten how to breathe and use our rib cage and lungs properly.

If I were to ask you to take time out now – lie down on your back with your knees bent and your feet flat on the floor and breathe, how do you do it? Do you:

  1. Inhale through your mouth and exhale through it?
  2. Inhale into your tummy?
  3. Inhale into your upper chest?
  4. Move your shoulders?
  5. Inhale through your nose?

I would like you to think about your anatomy – Feature-image-Oh-Coccyx-My-Coccyx-300x300@2xIf you look at the picture you can see that your rib cage is like the bellows that house your lungs – it follows that if you open and close your ribs you will allow more space for your lungs to inflate – you will also notice that your rib cage is not only at the front of your body!

Now after reading this next bit I’d like you to have a try at breathing again – in the same supine (on your back) position as you tried before!

  1. Inhale slowly through your nose – it is a design point – if you breathe through your nose – the hairs in your nose send all sorts of important information to your brain – like temperature, oxygen mix….and much, much more
  2. Put your hands round your rib cage with your fingers pointing to the front and your thumbs feeling the back – as you inhale you are going to push your hands at the side of your body and out of your back with your ribs – inflating your own carefully designed bellows
  3. As you do this your diaphragm stretches out across the bottom of your ribs – allowing your pelvic floor to relax
  4. The you are going to exhale through your mouth as if you are misting a mirror – as you do your ribs are going to close and your diaphragm will relax back under your ribs – helpfully without any extra work from you – pulling your pelvic floor and core upwards and inwards as it does
  5. The wider you can get your ribs – the better the synergistic movement from your pelvic floor

You are not going to:

  1. Inflate your tummy
  2. Lift your shoulders

You are going to:

  1. Inhale for a count of 3 and exhale for a count of 6 – to slow down your heart rate and calm your frantic world!!
  2. Come to a class and learn so much more….

Happy breathing.

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