The pelvic floor is not talked about nearly as much as it should be - especially when you consider how much it can actually impact our overall health and well-being. So today I’d like to change that by empowering you with some important knowledge about this vital part of your body.
The pelvic floor is essentially the base of our core, which is why I sometimes refer to it as the “pelvic core”. Anatomically it is a hammock of layered muscles that connects and holds together the pubic bone, the ‘sitting’ bones at the bottom of the pelvis and the tailbone, as well as supporting the organs that lie above it. It is actually one of the most important areas of the body as it is deeply connected to our physical and emotional health. When your pelvic floor is healthy and strong it can result in a range of amazing benefits including increased flexibility, decreased lower back pain, better metabolism, a stronger core, improved digestion, and even more enjoyable sex to name but a few.
The pelvic floor is usually discussed in relation to women after giving birth which can cause damage to this area. But as we age, having a more resilient pelvic floor is beneficial for both men and women as this key area of the body can impact not just how we feel physically, but also how we move through our lives emotionally and how we deal with stress as it arises.
In my book, The Power Source: The Hidden Key to Ignite Your Core, Empower Your Body, Release Stress, and Realign Your Life, I introduce what I call the five ‘Power Centers’. Much like the energy centers (or Chakras as they are known in Eastern medical traditions), these power centers start at the pelvic floor (aka, the Root Chakra) and are located up through the body to the head (or Crown Chakra). I call them ‘Power Centers’ because these five interconnected parts of the body are where accumulated stress gets stuck, where blockages form and where tension builds - but once we are able to move and release this stress and tension we can unlock our true potential and power!
The five Power Centers are the Pelvic Floor, the Deep Core, the Upper Core, the Heart and Shoulders, and the Head. While focusing on all five is important to our body’s overall well-being, the Pelvic Floor Power Center is perhaps the key power source. There are several reasons why the pelvic floor is so vital to our health. First, it is connected to our entire body. As a result, many common ailments such as low back pain, pelvic pain, TMJ or a tight jaw, incontinence, discomfort during sex and even negative emotions like anxiety, stress, and fear can all be traced back to a tight, weakened and over clutched pelvic floor.
Building resilience and connecting to the pelvic floor can help reverse all of these ailments. In fact, I’ve noticed that focusing on pelvic floor health tends to have a trickle-down effect in many of my clients’ lives. When someone’s pelvic floor is in a state of tension, their emotional state also tends to be tense. They might be completely stressed out, trying to force or control things too much, be emotionally blocked, or have difficulty turning off the “noise” of their lives which can affect the ability to properly relax (an important and necessary factor of well-being). The reason for this (especially when it comes to symptoms of stress) is because the pelvic floor is actually connected to the body’s nervous system and when our bodies are in constant fight or flight mode, we tend respond to it by “white-knuckling” our way through life - which often means clenching our pelvic floor in an unhealthy way.
Strengthening and building resilience within the pelvic floor can have a lasting impact on our physical and emotional well-being. When we think about strengthening the pelvic floor, Kegels are one of the first things that come to mind (if you don’t know what a kegel is, it’s flexing the muscles you’d use to cut off your pee midstream). While kegels can strengthen the pelvic floor, they are only one part of the equation. Think about it this way: If you were to flex your bicep and never fully let go, that muscle would over time become weak and disconnected from exhaustion. The pelvic floor is no different.
To build resilience in the pelvic floor we don’t want to focus on tightening and strengthening this key area - we also want to expand, stretch and release the pelvic floor as well. How do we do that? Just like any muscles in the body we need to both expandand contract the muscles in our pelvic floor to create real strength. It takes time and work, but with a little dedication to this important area of the body, it’s entirely possible to reconnect to your power source.
In my bookThe Power Source,I share an entire program for strengthening, and igniting the pelvic floor to build more resilience and transform your mind-body connection. You can also get started today on rehabilitating this area by doing simple exercises such as my free visualizations, breathwork, deep squats, side lunges, bouncing on a mini trampoline and pelvic massage while seated on a soft ball (such as my Body Sphere). You can also check out this YouTube video to strengthen your Pelvic Core and you can dive into all my videos focused on the Pelvic Floor including 3 new ones for April inside the Aligned Life Studio.
Plus you can take my FREE 3 day Power Source Challenge which features a range of exercises to strengthen your pelvic floor. Trust me, taking some time each day to reconnect to your pelvic floor and strengthen this vital part of your anatomy will pay dividends.