What if you are very old, infirm, or in a wheel chair?
Absolutely everyone can improve. If necessary you can do these exercises completely in your imagination and they will still have benefit. Moshe Feldenkrais said this and it’s true that each thought causes a slight physiological response, so imagining an exercise completely will still have an effect on the system. So the exercises are suitable for anyone with any degree of restriction as long as you can imagine fully.
What position are the exercises done in?
Seated, lying on the floor or bed, or standing. These positions can be modified according to your circumstances.
Can the exercises be overdone?
Yes. It’s important not to tire the muscles. Don’t, for instance, do all the exercises at once. Be content with doing one each day and allowing your body to absorb the information more slowly and efficiently. And within each exercise, be aware as overuse can knock out our ability to feel as much and make the necessary changes.
How much time will it take to feel an improvement?
That depends on your own effort, but certainly if you do one of these exercises each day for a month you will see an improvement. The longer you continue to do them, the more you will improve.
Absolutely everyone who is willing to spend the time. Even if you get discouraged in the beginning, know that you will improve if you keep at it. Just make sure you are doing what’s being asked of you and nothing extra. And don’t forget to breathe.
Are these exercises the same as Kegels?
No. These exercises are more precise and encourage strengthening around the muscles of the urethra in particular. Kegels are good but misunderstood and often taught as strengthening the anus. For most people this area is already overstrong and takes energy from the muscles in the front of the pelvic floor that these exercises reach.
Is it mainly older women who have the problem of incontinence?
Not at all. Women of every age suffer from incontinence for a number of reasons but no one talks about it, feeling that it’s shameful or their problem alone or just hoping that it will go away on its own. It rarely does.
Who should do these exercises?
Certainly women with bladder control problems at any stage, from occasional “mishaps” to complete dependence on pads and diapers. The exercises are also excellent for those with hemorrhoids, constipation, some forms of prolapse, lack of sexual vitality, those with numbness or pelvic pain, pregnant women or those recovering from childbirth. They are also recommended for anyone with alignment problems, back, neck and hip pain, and those who want core strengthening. They’re also great for men.