Hello and happy new year to our Pilates enthusiasts! As many of you know, Pilates is a fundamental component of our services here at Peridot Wellness. Our reformer classes have been specifically designed to improve your posture, enhance your flexibility, and help strengthen your body. But let's not forget about our friend, the often-overlooked pelvic floor. Today, I’ll share three key points to keep in mind for your pelvic floor when you're enjoying your Pilates reformer classes.
Your pelvic floor muscles play a crucial role in Pilates, being part of the core group of muscles fundamental to this practice. This group includes your abdominals, lower back muscles, pelvic floor, hip muscles, and glutes. Most Pilates exercises require the coordinated effort of these muscles. Therefore, understanding your pelvic floor and its role can significantly enhance the benefits you gain from your Pilates reformer classes.
Pilates reformer exercises can impact your pelvic floor in different ways. Some exercises, like footwork and leg circles, can serve as a personal trainer for these muscles - if done correctly. However, certain exercises might be too intense, especially if not performed with proper engagement and control. This could increase intra-abdominal pressure, potentially leading to pelvic floor dysfunction or exacerbating existing issues, such as bladder leakage or prolapse. Therefore, it's crucial to learn the correct technique and maintain solid form during exercises. The impact of Pilates reformer exercises on your pelvic floor can vary significantly, so understanding and implementing the right techniques and attending the appropriate class are key.
Maintaining a healthy pelvic floor in Pilates reformer classes requires awareness, technique, and modification. Start by understanding your pelvic floor and learning to engage and relax these muscles, which is exactly what we do in pelvic health physiotherapy. This understanding enables you to use the right technique for each exercise, effectively engaging your pelvic floor and core muscles while keeping good form. If your pelvic floor needs a rest, don't hesitate to ask your instructor for exercise modifications. If you're unsure where to begin, consider booking a pelvic health appointment. In Pilates, the quality of movement is more important than the quantity.
Remember these key things at your next reformer class and your pelvic floor will surely thank you!
Grecia Alaniz PT, MScPT, PhD (c)