As a physical therapist and personal trainer, I am well aware of how daunting initiating a new exercise program can be. It is with this in mind that I wanted to break down incontinence control into some simple steps. Try these today and tomorrow—ease your way into a routine that will improve your incontinence symptoms.

Step 1: Find 5 minutes per day to lie on your stomach.

Step 2: While standing in the shower, work your full pelvic range of motion by placing your hands on your hips and rocking your pelvis through extreme flexion and extension. In simple terms, rock your pelvis, tucking your buns under and then sticking your buns out. Repeat 20 times every morning.

Step 3: Directly out of the shower, stand so that you have a side view of your midsection in the mirror and draw your belly button “up and in” and hold for a 5-count. Visualize a string attached from your belly button to your pelvic floor when you do this. Feel your entire pelvic basket draw up and in as you pull your belly button “up and in” 10 times. (Take care not to tuck your buns under on this one and don’t forget to breathe normally!)

Step 4: Sitting in a chair, activate your inner thighs by placing a towel roll between your knees and squeezing for a 3-count. Do 20 repetitions.

Step 5: Sitting in that same chair, directly activate your pelvic floor by performing a 2-step Kegel. This involves tightening your pelvic floor and drawing it up toward your belly button and holding for an 8-count. Repeat this pelvic floor tightening and elevation 8 times.

In the 5 steps that I have listed above, you have the goal of establishing a routine. Within these simple steps you begin to establish a healthy extension of your lower spine. You also begin to activate the muscles that will help to support your bladder control, including your lower back muscles (multifidi), your lower abdominals (transversus abdominus), your inner thighs, and your pelvic floor muscles (levator ani).
I encourage you to take these 5 steps toward better bladder control and allow yourself to establish a routine. If/when you feel you want more direction in an exercise routine, you can gather educational and exercise information at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4cEApK3Do2Q&feature=channel . Now is the time for you to take the next step!

Published by Tasha

10 Comments

  1. I have been doing the above exercises and the DVD several times a week and really feel that it has helped my hip and back pain so much. My question is; how much do you feel it will help a rectocele when I have had a hysterectomy and no uterus?
    Also, have you heard anything about collagen helping prolapse, whether in an injection or pills? I really appreciate your input on this. Thanks.

    Reply
  2. Carole,
    The exercises, and mainly getting the coordination of your TA and your pelvic floor will help support your rectocele. I am glad the exercises have helped your hip and back pain…now take it one step further and be aware of holding your belly button in while still holding a good lumbar arch throughout your day, not just during exercises. This is a significant effort to learn the balance, but it WILL help your rectocele.

    As far as the collagen injections – haven’t heard or read anything on that. Have read a significant amount on topial estrogen cream, specifically Estrace cream, that has helped many women. You will need a prescription for this and it is well worth the discussion with your doctor.

    -Tasha

    Reply
  3. Thanks so much. My Dr. did prescribe the Estrace cream.

    Reply
  4. Hi Tasha,
    I love your website and dvd. I was wondering if your exercises are available in picture form?
    Also, are they safe to do during pregnancy?
    Thank you so much!

    Reply
  5. Kristen,
    I don’t have the exercises in picture and written form, just the dvd for you to follow with. If the video is taking to much time to roll through because of my lengthy verbal instructions, then you can try the streamlined or “time sensitive” section on the dvd that will cut out my hot air!

    Also, the exercises are safe during pregnancy, because there is no significant amount of time spent on your back, however, you do need to listen to your own body and do what feels right. If you have any symnptoms of shortness of breath, dizziness, or nausea, stop all exercise. Of course there are the exercises on your stomach that you won’t be able to complete much past the 1st trimester.

    Stay tuned to our website, we are making some good changes and on the new version, I will have a written exercise program with educational pieces to offer a better understanding of the changes your body goes through during pregnancy, along with some specific exercises that I would highly recommend right up until the day you deliver.

    Thanks for the great question!

    Tasha

    Reply
  6. Hi Tasha,
    I have just discovered I have a cystocele and am embarking on the program of good posture and exercise without delay! My question is how can I obtain your DVD? I live in Paris, France and cannot choose shipping to here nor subscribe on YouTube. Is there anything that I can do to order it?
    Thanks!
    Kate

    Reply
  7. The website stressnomore.com will ship to you out of the UK. Please let us no if you have any problems with this.

    Tasha

    Reply
  8. Thanks Tasha, I’ve ordered through Amazon to send via the UK (my mother in law is going to send it on to me!). Will gladly update you as to how I go with it.

    I’ve already started working on my posture as you suggest – frequently reminding myself throughout the day – and am keeping up the daily routine you describe above. Early days but I’m so determined to overcome this problem and finding your site (thanks to the prolapsehealth.com ladies) is giving me confidence and inspiration – it CAN be done! Essentially what I want to say is thank you.
    Kate

    Reply
  9. You got it Katie! A positive approach goes a long way with your health. Sounds like you are taking all the right steps and being diligent with your follow through. I will be excited for you to share your progress.

    -Tasha

    Reply

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