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4 Restorative Yoga Poses for Pelvic Pain

pelvic pain
Doing Aerial Yoga in Physical Therapy School (2018)

What are the pelvic floor muscles?

The pelvic floor muscles are located at the base of your pelvis, connecting from your tailbone (in the back) to your pubic bone (in the front). They also span laterally between each of your sitz bones (or ischial tuberosities). The pelvic floor muscles surround the urethra, vagina, and rectum, and play a role in controlling urinary and fecal continence and sexual function. Tension or tightness in your pelvic floor muscles can result in conditions, including urinary leakage, fecal leakage, incomplete emptying of the bladder, and pain with intercourse.

In the graphic below, you will see the pubic bone (in the front of the pelvis), the tailbone (in the back of the pelvis), and the pelvic floor muscles, which span from front to back. You will also see the urethra, vagina, and rectum, and the circular pelvic floor muscles that wrap around each canal.

pelvic floor
Permission to copyright @mypelvicfloormuscles

What happens when your pelvic floor muscles are tight?

Tight pelvic floor muscles can result in pelvic floor dysfunction. These pelvic floor muscles are like any other muscle in your body. The muscles need to contract, or shorten, and relax, or lengthen. In other words, your pelvic floor muscles need to have full range of motion in order to function. When the muscles are in a contracted state, the muscles may also be called "hypertonic" or "tight."

Symptoms of a "Tight" Pelvic Floor

  • Leaking when coughing or sneezing (urinary incontinence)

  • Urge to run to the bathroom (urinary urgency)

  • Multiple trips to the bathroom at night (nocturia)

  • Trouble controlling gas

  • Constipation

  • Difficulty initiating bowel movements

  • Difficulty initiating urine stream or incomplete emptying of your bladder

  • Discomfort in the lower back, groin, abdomen, hips, and legs

  • Painful intercourse

Benefits of Yoga for Treating the Pelvic Floor

Yoga helps decrease tension or tightness in the pelvic floor. Yoga puts your pelvis, back, and hip joints in positions that create more length or space in your pelvis.

Here are 4 yoga poses to help open up your pelvic floor.

1. "V" adductor stretch

pain with intercourse

2. Happy Baby


3. Child's Pose


4. Long Sit Hip Hinge/Forward Lean


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