Man or woman, I am sure you agree – hips are amazing! But do you have strong hips? Do you know what I mean by that? Let’s talk more first about why our hips are so important:
- Life begins and grows within our hips
- We allow music to be felt through us by dancing, swaying our hips
- Our strength and function in physical movement originate here
- Here we sit. Here we stand
- They propel us forward whether it be to run, jump or twirl
- We feel pain here when things are not right
- We feel pleasure when they are
- Hips are beautiful
- We express ourselves with our hips
As much as our brain is the head office of our nervous system, therefore, our command centre; I think of our hips as the head office of physical action. Most movements originate here and therefore any dysfunction, even if not felt, can cause pain and discomfort in other parts of our body. So why is the optimal function of this so important part of our body so often ignored? Or even worse, mistreated?
Unfortunately, the answer to this is usually due to lack of knowledge. Most people don’t know what, or if anything, is required to maintain good function and health in our hips, pelvis, pelvic floor.
Dysfunction, weakness, and imbalances can cause such common problems such as back pain, constipation, urinary incontinence, pain during sex and so much more. When you hear your friend, spouse or co-worker complain of a bad back you probably don’t think to yourself “his/her pelvic floor must be weak”. You might think, or even say; “you should work your core, I have heard that helps a bad back”. But do you know what it means to work your core in a way that is beneficial for your back? We have all heard by now that we should be “working our core”. But what does that mean? Crunches? Sit-ups? No! These exercises can only make matters worse or can create dysfunction where nothing was wrong, to begin with.
Did you know that your pelvic floor is a part of your core? Probably not. Neither did I a few years ago. But it is this lack of knowledge that has women complaining of urinary incontinence, constipation, back pain and more, just to be told by their doctors and friends that it is normal. They are told that this is what happens when a woman has had children or is approaching menopause… They are expected to accept it as their new normal…. PLEASE DON’T!!! Now you know there is more to it and there is something you can do.
There is nothing normal about peeing when you sneeze, cough or exercise. There is nothing normal or acceptable about having pain when you have sex with your partner. It may be common, but it is not normal. There is something that can be done. And quite easily too. First, I need for you to rethink this whole hip area a little. Keep in mind that the major muscles in our legs originate or cross our hips. In addition, we have a group of muscles in our pelvis that make up our ‘pelvic floor’. And like any muscles, they need to be exercised in order to be strong and work well. I have linked another blog post below that explains the function of these muscles in more detail. Because of the complexity of the function of our hips/pelvis it is imperative to strengthen in a way that recruits all the muscles that work synergistically alongside it. Only then will you experience that your back pain goes away, hip pain becomes a thing of the past and you can sneeze without crossing your legs again.
I have been doing this work for years now and find it incredibly rewarding to help women reach an improved quality of life by eliminating many of these problems and thus making them feel they can swing their hips all the way to the gym, not worrying about peeing when they laugh at a joke and enjoying intimacy with their partner again without pain.
This past month, I had, alongside my colleagues, the pleasure and privilege of running a course educating other health professionals on how they can help their clients and patients restore their core and pelvic function. So much fun and so empowering not just for us, but for our participants. This is one of the many reasons why I love what I do.
I invite you to learn more about this and my RestoreYourCore Program, and please pass on to any women in your life who you think may benefit (everyone I would think). But first, let me get you started with a basic exercise – which is where all my clients start. So, sit up straight, untuck those hips and watch:
I wish you the happiest and healthiest of days 🙂 xo