Want a Stronger Pelvic Floor? Don’t Grip Your Core.
Join Us in Seattle May 11th & 12th for Franklin Method Workshops
with THE Eric Franklin!
The pelvic floor has finally gotten its fair share of attention lately, and rightfully so. Strong pelvic floor muscles contribute to proper bladder and bowel control, increase blood circulation, and improve sexual function. That should be enough motivation to ensure your muscles are at peak performance. There is an array of exercises that contribute to the pelvic floor strength, but according to movement expert and founder of the Franklin Method, Eric N. Franklin, if you are in the habit of gripping your core, you are subtracting from the benefits of your hard work.
In the lower abdomen, the abdominal organs must shift into the pelvic area, causing a subsequent shift in the pelvic floor muscles. When this happens, the floor naturally increases in tone. There is no need to pull the belly button towards the spine and lift the pelvic floor while training. In fact, this movement puts pressure on the bladder, which can lead to incontinence.
Bracing your abdominals in this way makes movement more difficult than it should be. Focusing on core stabilization by gripping, instead of correct breathing, sacrifices full range of motion of the movements that are intended to improve your core strength in the first place. Instead, the most effective approach, according to Franklin, is to focus on meshing our breathing with our movements, leading to a natural training and toning of the abdominals.
To hear Eric Franklin expound on the effect of gripping the core on the pelvic floor, click here.