HOW TO FIX URINARY INCONTINENCE
Female urinary incontinence is a serious, real, and widespread problem that not many trainers are talking about.
In my experience with clients who have this condition, they are often embarrassed to bring it up or discuss it because they think it is a problem specific only to them.
This could not be further from the truth. There was a study carried out that surveyed ~290 females who regularly exercise. A stunning 52% of them said they experience regular involuntary urination during or outside of exercise.
That is more than half of all females.
This is clearly a huge problem that needs to be addressed.
WHAT CAUSES URINARY INCONTINENCE?
It’s first important to understand that you have both a diaphragm and a pelvic floor. Both of these are very directly related, as the state of one affects the other.
Upon inhalation, our diaphragm and pelvic floor should simultaneously descent as air comes in. As we exhale, they should both ascend as air is expelled. That is normal human functioning.
The problem is, many individuals live their lives in excessive lumbar extension. This creates a plethora of issues in the body. Primarily, it creates a state in the body where the diaphragm and pelvic floor is unable to effectively descend and ascend.
This is because the abdomen is stuck protruding out, causing some of the air, gas, and pressure we take in through inhalation to be stuck.
If we cannot expel this excess air, it creates an “inhalation” state of the body where the diaphragm and pelvic floor are stuck descended.
In addition, the excess air, gas, and pressure pushes down on the descended pelvic floor. This puts direct pressure on the urethra, bladder, and other parts of the pelvic floor.
SO WHAT HAPPENS WHEN I PEE DURING EXERCISE?
Imagine you are lifting a heavy weight during a squat, or performing an explosive movement like a jump. You have either weight, gravity, or both pushing down on you with multiple times your bodyweight.
Fluid responds to pressure. If there is too much pressure in the pelvic floor, the urine has nowhere to go but out. That is just basic physics.
WHAT CAN I DO?
This might sound strange, but we must first breathe properly. You can do all the kegel exercises you want, but until you solve the root issue of your condition, there can be no long-term solution.
We first must make sure you can get a strong exhale, which will drive out the excess air, gas, and pressure in your abdomen and pelvic floor.
After we have gotten you out of that extended state where your low back is no longer stuck in an excessive arch and your diaphragm/pelvic floor can finally ascend properly, then we can address the pelvic floor.
Now, since you have been stuck in that state for so long, and taking into account the natural asymmetries of the human body (more on that here), the pelvic floor definitely needs some direct work.
Thankfully for you, my experience with Postural Restoration Institute methodology provides me with the knowledge required on how to fix urinary incontinence during exercise once and for all.