What is the pelvic floor?
The diaphragm seals the abdominal cavity from above, while the pelvic floor muscles seal it from below. The boundaries of the pelvic floor are clearly discernible and comprise the pubic bone, the pubic rami, the ischial tuberosities, the coccyx and the sacrum. It consists of multiple layers of muscle which collectively are about as thick as the palm of your hand and are layered over one another in the shape of a funnel. This is how the pelvic floor keeps the abdominal organs (intestines, rectum, bladder, genitals) in position.
Unfortunately, many can be self-conscious about pelvic floor problems and are wary to approach a health professional if they experience incontinence or sexual dysfunction.
However, pelvic floor issues are common: In a meta-analysis of 48 studies, an estimated 16% of women under 30 years of age experienced incontinence and in women between 30 and 60, that figure had risen to 29%. Amongst those women, 78% had experienced stress urinary incontinence (SUI) and 51% had experienced so-called “urge urinary incontinence”.
Pelvic floor problems are equally common in men: Erectile dysfunction affects around 9% of men between 20 and 29 years of age, 33% of those between 50 and 59 and 70% of men over 70 years of age.
At Kieser, we strive to eliminate the taboo surrounding the pelvic floor muscles with our A5 machine. This machine represents a major advancement in preventing and treating the many problems associated with weak pelvic floor muscles. In particular, strengthening these muscles can prevent or treat prolapses of the bladder or uterus. These problems frequently start during pregnancy due to the additional load, causing undue strain on these muscles. Provided the pregnancy is progressing normally, clients can continue sub-maximum strength training during pregnancy as it is good preparation for the recovery process following childbirth.