Here's everything you need to know about your pelvic floor, mama! This video is meant to be listened to at the beginning of this program, but the 3 exercises are meant to be done in THIRD trimester. That's when we want to start loosening up those pelvic floor muscles to make way for baby :)
Even if it's uncomfy, we need to be familiar with our pelvic floor, connecting to it, releasing it, and our perineum. So take a listen (two or three times through, if needed!) and learn about the SUPER important pelvic floor!
With 6ish weeks of pregnancy left, you can begin the below release work:
- Posterior Pelvic Floor Release: A common holding pattern that develops in pregnancy is a gripping or tensing of the posterior muscles of the pelvic floor, which can encourage a posterior tilt to the pelvis. This tension can also result when the pelvis is held in a posterior tilt (think of sitting slouched for the majority of the day). When we release these muscles, the pelvis has more freedom to find and stay in neutral alignment.
- Equipment: Chair and tennis ball/massage ball
- Sit on a hard chair with a neutral pelvis. Lift your left butt cheek up and find your sitz bone. Place the ball in between your right sitz bone and your butt. Lower the butt cheek down with the ball in place and hold 30-60 seconds. Repeat on other side.
- Perineum Release: The perineum is the area between the vagina and the butt and is prone to tearing in childbirth. Becoming familiar with sensations of discomfort in the perineum and learning to yield to the discomfort and relax the area are important during birth. Become aware of your perineum in pregnancy and learn to release the tension there as you prepare for birth.
- Equipment: chair and a pool noodle or towel
- Sit on a chair with a neutral pelvis. Place the noodle/towel lengthwise along perineum. Hold for 30-60 seconds and breathe deeply. Work at softening and letting go of tension in the pelvic floor, the glutes, and the inner thighs.
- Perineal Massage: Perineal massage is a practice that most women do to help avoid tearing. While studies have shown that perineal massage can play a role in reducing the likelihood of tearing, the practice is also about helping you teach your pelvic floor to respond appropriately to sensations of stretch, pressure, and discomfort. This is done in the last three to five weeks of pregnancy only.