Pelvic pain affects 1 in 5 women and 1 in 12 men at some time in their life. Your pelvis is a complex connection area between your legs, spine and the rest of your body. Osteopaths take a whole-body approach.
The evidence supports the use of pelvic floor physical therapy as a first-line treatment for most pelvic floor disorders. It may assist patients with incontinence, peripartum and postpartum pelvic floor dysfunction, pelvic floor myofascial pain, dyspareunia, vaginismus and others (Wallace et al 2019).
Here are 5 easy exercises you can do at home to support and strengthen the pelvis.
Pelvic tilts: https://youtu.be/44D6Xc2Fkek Lie on your back with your knees bent and feet flat on the floor. Slowly tilt your pelvis forward and backward, contracting your abdominal muscles as you do so. Repeat for several repetitions.
Bridging: https://youtu.be/wPM8icPu6H8 Lie on your back with your knees bent and feet flat on the floor. Lift your hips up toward the ceiling, squeezing your glutes and engaging your core. Hold for several seconds, then lower back down.
Squats: https://youtu.be/9OfycnUL0h8 Stand with your feet hip-width apart and toes pointing forward. Slowly lower your hips down into a squat, keeping your weight in your heels and your knees tracking over your toes. Return to standing and repeat for several repetitions.
Lunges: https://youtu.be/wrwwXE_x-pQ Stand with your feet hip-width apart and take a big step forward with one foot. Lower your back knee down toward the ground, keeping your front knee tracking over your toes. Return to standing and repeat on the other side.
Deadlifts: https://youtu.be/r4MzxtBKyNE Stand with your feet hip-width apart and a weight (such as a dumbbell or kettlebell) in each hand. Hinge forward at the hips, keeping your back flat and your core engaged. Return to standing and repeat for several repetitions.
By regularly performing these exercises, you can help to improve the strength and stability of your pelvis, which can in turn improve your overall physical health and well-being. However, it's always a good idea to consult with a healthcare professional before starting any new exercise program, especially if you have a history of pelvic pain or injury.
Wallace S et al. 2019. Pelvic floor physical therapy in the treatment of pelvic floor dysfunction in women. Curr Opin. Obstet Gynecol. Dec; 31(6): 485-493