Posted by on 6/16/2021 to Let's Talk Yoga!
It's Not All About Crunches: Yoga Poses for Pelvic Floor Strengthening.
The Pelvic Floor is known in the West as a deep musculature that supports our internal organs but, thanks to yoga, we can discover that it is much more! Strengthening our pelvic floor is so important and if you think of doing crunches and other stressful hard exercises to make it happen, well, we have a news for you! There are actually some amazing yoga poses for pelvic floor strengthening that can help you gain strength, flexibility and awareness over your body in a gentle, effective way! Let’s see then how yoga for pelvic floor muscles can help and then let’s learn how to perform the best yoga poses for pelvic floor strengthening!
The Pelvic Floor: what it is?
The pelvic floor is the voluntary and involuntary musculature that runs from the pubis to the coccyx. It supports the urethra, bladder, anus, vagina in women and the root of the penis in men.
This area of the body is generally not very aware and is often little known both because it is covered by taboos (it is the area of urination, defecation and sexual organs) but also because it is a hidden area within the body.
A healthy pelvic floor avoids urinary leakage, prolapse of the uterus, bladder and rectum and increases pleasure during sexual intercourse.
It also plays a fundamental role during pregnancy: it helps to support the weight of the belly, allows the vagina to relax and dilate to give birth to the baby, its muscle contractions push the baby outwards.
Yoga for pelvic floor muscles
The yoga discipline gives great importance to the pelvic floor muscles: this ancient practice can be useful in particular after pregnancy to restore sensitivity and elasticity to the perineum fatigued by childbirth, but also in menopause in order to improve muscle tone and prevent episodes of incontinence.
In the pelvic floor, according to yoga, the Muladhara Chakra is located, or the root Chakra, the first of the energy centers, the one connected to awareness, primordial needs and sexuality. The Nadis, that is the three main energy channels, propagate from it: Ida, the channel of the lunar, cold and soothing energies; Pingala, that of solar energies, warm, active and finally Susumna, associated with vital energy. The specific yoga exercises for the pelvic floor therefore serve to restore vital strength to our Muladhara Chakra, here are some to try:
Best yoga poses for pelvic floor strengthening
Mula bandha, with this term means "closure of the root", that is the voluntary lifting and contraction of the pelvic floor muscles and constitutes a basic position of yoga practice. With the contraction of the perineum, in fact, the vital energy remains in the body, allowing you to acquire greater awareness and perform more complex positions, managing to maintain them for a long time. In our daily life, we can accompany this position to meditation and to some sequences of inhalation and exhalation.
Malasana or garland pose
After squatting with the weight on the soles of the feet, the thighs separated and wider than the torso, we try to move forward to lift the pelvis and stretch the spine, keeping the heels on the ground or on a folded blanket or sheet. This exercise, similar to a spread-out squat, can be repeated up to 10 times and is completed by joining the palms of the hands in front of the heart.
Uttasana or Standing forward bend
This is yoga pose for pelvic floor strengthening that focuses on grounding, on connection with the earth through the stimulation of the first chakra, acting on the opening and relaxation of the pelvic muscles. Specifically, it consists of an intense stretching of the entire back of the body, in particular of the back and the hamstrings, which reach the floor in a fluid way. Both during the descent and the holding of the position, the knees can remain bent so as not to strain excessively the lower back. Especially at the beginning, we must not ask too much of our body but, with constant training, we will notice progress day after day and our muscles will be more and more elastic and flexible.
Discovering and being aware of every muscle, organ, movement that occurs within us is essential to get to know each other better by discovering worlds that we didn't even think existed.
The striking example is given precisely by the Pelvic Floor, muscles hidden in our depths impregnated with the energy of the first chakra and its qualities.
By rebalancing these muscles with yoga poses for pelvic floor strengthening (toning it if it is too loose or relaxing it if it is too contracted), we therefore have the opportunity to rebalance the energy qualities it contains while strengthening our bodies and working on our self-confidence.