Many pregnant women often face the problem of leaking urine or incontinence. You can avoid this by strengthening your pelvic floor muscles. As the name suggests, these muscles form the floor of the pelvis, and need to be strengthened for a vaginal delivery.
Here we list down three exercises you can do to strengthen your pelvic floor muscles. Ensure you take a go-ahead from your doctor before doing any of these.
These exercises can be done in any position, any time of the day on full or empty stomach.
1) Try to contract your pelvic floor muscles as if you are trying to stop the urine to leak or trying to prevent gas to pass.
2) Contract for 3 seconds and relax for 3 seconds. Equal contraction and relaxation is important.
3) Repeat 5-6 times at a time, and can be done a total of 10-15 times in a day.
To isolate pelvic floor muscles from other muscles, we need to do a small test. Next time when you go to pee, try holding the urine stream in between. Notice the muscles which are required for holding the urine. These are your pelvic floor muscles. Don’t overdo the test as doctors recommend against obstructing urine midstream for prolonged periods or multiple times.
1) Stand along the wall with feet little apart. Let your spine (from neck to tailbone) be in touch with the wall.
2) Keep hands by your side, palms facing the wall. Slowly bend both your knees and go as low as comfortable. Keep in mind that your neck & back should be straight.
3) Hold for 2-3 seconds and slide back up straightening the knees up & making them taut.
4) Repeat 7-10 times.
Cat & Camel
These are one of the most important exercises which help in relieving back and pelvic pain, commonly present during pregnancy. As the name suggests these exercises ask us to imitate our spine similar to those of a cat and camel respectively.
1) Lie on all four limbs (as in a cat or camel) called as the quadruped position.
2) Keep your hands just beneath the shoulders keeping elbows straight and knees just beneath the hips; feet shoulder width apart.
3) As you get onto all fours, keep your spine in neutral position. Then slowly lift your neck up and push the spine down to make a curve as in a cat’s spine; then slowly again tilt the spine upwards to make a hump as that of a camel.
4) Repeat 10 times, breathing normally.