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Article: Yoga and Incontinence

Yoga and Incontinence - Novamed (Europe) ltd

Yoga and Incontinence

Yoga Day - 21st June 2023

Yoga has been widely recognised to have several health benefits. It has been practiced in India for 100 of years for health benefits. Yoga could help you reduce the frequency of incontinence symptoms.

 

Yoga can help you strengthen your pelvic floor muscles by strengthening the pelvic floor muscles. Certain yoga poses can help these muscles regain strength, which in turn helps them to better maintain urine flow and resist excessive force put on the bladder.

Stretching exercises strengthen muscles that support the bladder and other pelvic organs. Breathing techniques improve blood flow throughout the body, which helps keep the pelvic area healthy.

Yoga can help with following types of incontinence: 

  • Stress Incontinence – where a small amount of urine leaks out after internal pressure quickly builds, due to sneezing, coughing, laughing, or lifting heavy weights.
  • Urge Incontinence – where the body signals that it immediately needs to void urine without the usual build-up warning.

Yoga Poses for Reducing Incontinence

  1. Tadasana or Mountain Pose

 

Mountain pose is a simple standing pose where you stand solid on the ground with a small gap between your feet and while deeply breathing (inhale), raise your both arms upward by interlocking your fingers. Stand on your toes by raising your heels simultaneously and notice the pressure of stretching from toes to fingers.

Hold onto this position as long as you can with slow and deep breathing. Then, release and come to the original position with deep breathing (exhale) and repeat the same pose as per your convenience after relaxing for a while.

  1. Utkatasana or Chair Pose

 

Stand straight with your feet together and arms by your side. Take a deep breath and raise your arms straight up, then fold them in a namaskar mudra before your chest.

Exhale and bend your knees as if seated on a chair. Straighten your back and push your tailbone to the ground to get into the final position.

Try to stay in this pose for 15-20 seconds before releasing the posture. While inhaling, come back to the first position.

  1. Trikonasana or Triangle Pose

 

Triangle pose is a pose in which your legs create a triangle with the floor. The feet are positioned wider than the shoulder (about 3 feet apart), with the front foot turned perpendicular to the other, aligned at the centre. The upper torso is bent towards the front foot with hands extended perpendicular to the floor.

  1. Malasana or Squat Pose

 

The squat pose begins with the feet about shoulder-width part, with toes off the mat but heels on it. Bend your knees and lower yourself in a squat position. Separate your thighs slightly wider than your torso and press your elbow against your inner thighs, brining your palms together in front of your chest. Lengthen your spine, moving your tailbone towards the floor and lift the crown of your head towards the ceiling. The upper torso and head should be relaxed.

  1. Viparita Karani Variation – Legs up the Wall Pose

 

Viparita Karani imitates the position of laying against a wall, but without the wall. Swing your legs up against the wall and slowly lower your back with your head to the floor, keeping your legs straight. Allow your hands to fall out to the side, with your palms facing up. The back is arched and. The chin is very slightly tucked towards the chest. Close your eyes and breathe deeply, relaxing into the pose.

  1. Supta Buddha Konasana – Reclined Cobblier’s Pose

 

The reclined cobbler’s pose is flat post that beings by lying flat with the shoulders, back, and hips on the floor. Bring the soles of your feet together and allow your knees to fall out to the sides. The arms are extended at 45 degrees with the palms facing up. The feet are pressed together with the knees pointing outward.

  1. Salamba Set Bandhasana – Supported Bridge Pose

 

Salamba set bandhasana begins with the shoulder on the floor. The hands are joined together underneath the hips for extra support. The body is arched towards the sky with feet flat on the floor. 

  1. Savasana – Corpse Pose

 

Savasana beings by lying flat on the back. The feet are shoulder-width apart with the toes pointing to the sky. The hands are extended at 45 degrees with the palms open and facing up. 

Yoga poses are an excellent help because it improves balance and strengths the core and back muscles. Yoga benefits can go beyond helping with incontinence, it also gives people a great way to physically strengthen your muscle while improving your mind and lifting your spirits giving an overall boost to quality of life.

Please do consult an experienced yoga instructor to see if yoga can help you manage incontinence.

It is always advisable to consult with your healthcare professional your incontinence symptoms.

Reference:

 

  1. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5657230/#CD012668-bbs2-0046
  2. https://www.yogabasics.com/connect/yoga-blog/yoga-for-incontinence/
  3. https://urologyexperts.com/3-best-yoga-poses-urinary-incontinence/

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