Pelvic Floor Muscle Balancing
If you are experiencing sacral iliac joint issues, such as Low back pain, feeling that your hips are locked up or knee and ankle issues. This often relates to what we call a locked up or restricted sacral iliac joint. The pain associated with this can vary from mild restriction to immobilizing pain. I found this a challenging exercise to put into only words without custom illustrations in particular your desired finger placement to assess the imbalance. The exercise part without the finger placement will still provide great potential relief and Kegel exersises have many known benefits. The trick is to assess and rebalance the right and left sides to improve pelvic mobility and stability.
The Pull apart squeeze together exercise (The self hip release exercise found here) is very effective at releasing the lock in the pelvis. Unless you do this repeatedly the lock will reappear frequently. What I have found is that the underlying cause is often related to an imbalance in the pelvic floor muscles the pubocoxygeus muscle and transverse abdominus. This figure eight muscle is largely responsible for stabilizing the three major bones of the pelvis. If we correctely assess the imbalance and apply these exercises correctly we can often unlock our hips, stop the sacrum from tilting to one side, jamming the sacrum and the ilium together and create flow and freedom of movement. You may wish to book an appointment to get an up to date assessment of what is going on in your body.
Sitting down to start. Place the pads of your first three fingers (2-3 finger widths in depth) inside your hip bones. coming from the front on the inside of the bowl on the inside of you asis so you can feel your transverse abdominal mussles contract at the same time you fire a Kegel contraction. Softly press inwards taking up some of the sponginess of the tissue. Try to keep your hands soft and supple so you can feel them fire.
Try to observe which side of your muscles pushes more anteriorly or forward into your finger tips. (definetly a more advanced palpation test) If you feel that one side has a more dominant contraction, which can be experienced as larger more dense muscle feel and or stronger push. Timing issues can also exist where one side fires faster than the other side. The correction we want to work the weaker side stronger by contracting this side harder (it can be done). If it’s a timing issue you can adjust your Kegel (pee stopper) contractions to try and get them to synchonize their firing time and size. This is an exercise is best learned with your therapist.
Strongly contract your pelvic floor muscles (pee stopper muscles) Hold the contraction for a good 3 seconds Rest for 3 seconds. Repeat this for 10 contractions. Perform this exercise at least 3x per day.
Follow these 10, 3 second sustained contractions with 10 pulsing contractions, Contract your pelvic floor muscles as strongly and maximally as you can and then completely release the muscles betwen pulses. This will help the muscle maintain the very balistic nature of the contractions which will help you maintain faster stability.
Strive to create a balance between right and left sides for both timing and strength – feeling the same amount of displacement or movement into the pads of your fingers.