Is leaking while running a pelvic floor dysfunction? Yes! Is it possible to run without leaking? Absolutely!
Nobody wants to leak while they are running, but unfortunately many, many women do! Continue reading to learn how to progress yourself so you can get back to Wee Free Running and rid yourself of your pelvic floor dysfunction!
Refer to earlier blogs such as https://cathywatsonphysio.ca/running-leaking-3-exercises-help/ for more information on having incontinence issues. There are certain important things to know when you have noticed that while you are running, you are not staying as dry as you used to:
Why is this pelvic floor dysfunction happening?
Most often, as long as there aren’t any other symptoms that are suggesting the possibility of an existing pathology, this is just a stress incontinence problem. If this is the only symptom you are having…leaking while sneezing, coughing, laughing, running, etc., book an appointment with your pelvic floor physiotherapist to have your pelvic floor checked. Check out the following link to find a pelvic floor physiotherapist in your neighbourhood.
From this appointment, you will know how well, or not, you are able to engage your pelvic floor muscles. The assessment typically looks at measuring the strength and endurance of your pelvic floor muscles vaginally and/or rectally, looks for the existence or not of a prolapse, palpates for any tender areas in your pelvic floor muscles, assesses your posture, assesses your breathing as well as how well you are able to activate your transverse abdominis band.
If strength and endurance are the only issues, exercises will be given for you to work on
A follow up is typical within a couple of weeks to ensure everything is proceeding as expected. If so, you will be progressed. Once you have worked through many of the basic functional exercises and your goal is to return to running, some impact exercises with good pelvic floor engagement will be given.
If you don’t happen to have a reformer lying around your house, then a typical progression might be as follows:
- squats with a narrow stance
- squats with a wider stance
- stationary lunges
- step out into a lunge, uni directional then multi directional
- lunges with switching position in the air
- small jumps, jumping jacks, etc.
Most important thing to recover from pelvic floor dysfunction
You must engage your pelvic floor muscles with each and every rep of each and every exercise. Pull up and in with your pelvic floor muscles BEFORE your foot connects with the ground. For no impact exercise, engage on exertion…for example…during a squat, engage your muscles on the way up from the squat.
If you are lucky enough to have access to a reformer, using the jump board or cardio tramp is a great way to rehab back to running. The bonus of using this piece of equipment is the position. Lying down allows your to not have to work against the full effects of gravity so these exercises can be added in quite early. Is it just like running? Absolutely not, but it is a great progression in order to work towards upright running.Taking out the variable of gravity but keeping in the variable of impact doesn’t overload the system and ensures a more successful progression towards being able to run without leaking!
Click on the link below to see a few exercises done using the reformer with the cardio tramp!