I’ve been doing some research for the workshop I’m leading on the Gold Coast in a couple of weeks entitled “Pelvic Freedom: Yoga Poses and Practices for Women’s Well-Being”. The day-long program is pretty rich, I think, and encompasses information on anatomy, pelvic problems, and asanas and practices for various stages of a woman’s life. I thought I’d pass on something I read today (isn’t Google wonderful?) about the importance of keeping the pelvic floor muscles healthy – something we all know we should be doing, but perhaps need to be reminded of occasionally. For instance, when I went travelling in the U.S. and Canada a couple of months ago, my yoga practice languished, I’m sorry to say. I didn’t think it would have this effect but I started to experience “urge incontinence” – which is the inability to hold urine when there is a strong need to urinate. For me, a little impromptu leaking would occur, much to my dismay. Get thee to some yoga classes Pronto!, I said to myself. With the resuming of my regular yoga practice, the problem disappeared straightaway. The internet article I read would be of interest to most women and says that weak pelvic floor muscles are the problem behind not just an overactive bladder but also some sexual difficulties, namely not producing enough lubrication and even inability to experience orgasm. Oh horrors! As you can imagine, switching on mulabhanda throughout yoga practice is very helpful, doing Kegel exercises, and having intercourse all bring increased circulation to the pelvic floor and can strengthen the vital muscles. The article goes on to describe the ravages of childbirth and ageing:
The development of well-toned muscles has been shown to help 86% of women with symptoms due to weak pelvic floor muscles. You have the option of choosing exercise to help relieve and even eliminate incontinence or improve the vaginal embrace instead of submitting to more complex surgical procedures.
Here’s to staying dry when you want to, wet when you want to and enjoying those vaginal embraces.