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Sports and Urine Leakage | Mom In Balance


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Urinary Incontinence During Exercise

During and after your pregnancy, you may lose urine to a lesser or greater extent during (intense) exercise and sports. Fortunately, it does not usually indicate serious causes and is more common than you think. Of course, it is best to get rid of it as soon as possible! We would like to tell you how this is taken into account in our sports programmes and workouts, and how we can support you in a good recovery.

Urinary Incontinence during and after your pregnancy: what causes it?

At the beginning of your pregnancy, you will notice that you have to urinate more often. The cause is simple: your body has more fluids to deal with. During your pregnancy, in preparation for childbirth, everything gets "weaker": the baby grows (and so does your uterus) which puts more pressure on your bladder and pelvic floor.

In addition, the more pressure that builds up, both in sports and in everyday strenuous movements, the greater the importance of (proper) breathing. Failure to do so can result in too much abdominal pressure, which can result in urine loss.

During pregnancy, many women unconsciously tighten the pelvic floor muscles (too) much and have to relearn the difference between tightening and relaxing them. The continuous "on" of these muscles contributes to experiencing more pressure on the bladder, making you feel the urge to urinate more often. Excessive tightening of the pelvic floor muscles is common to compensate for the extra weight during your pregnancy. So, unlike a weakened pelvic floor, the exact opposite is more likely to be the trigger - even after you give birth.

During Exercising

From feeling like you need to pee (again!), to actually "losing" urine - it is common for women in our workouts. Starting the conversation about this will always pay off. You'll find that you're really not the only one. During exercise, many women notice urine leakage. Especially with shock load exercises (where your body needs to absorb the impact) and coördinatively challenging exercises (where it's more about keeping balance). It is important to exercise under proper supervision and in the right way. This can help prevent and remedy symptoms such as urine leakage.

Learning to stabilize or absorb impact with your pelvic floor is an important part of the training. Pelvic floor training is and remains essential for alleviating and sometimes even completely solving this problem. In addition, feeling the difference between contracting and relaxing is an important part of our training. We start with this already during your pregnancy.

Urinary Incontinence during all phases of womenhood

Urinary leakage does not only occur during and after pregnancy. Many women who do not have children (yet) and women around or in menopause can also experience urine leakage. Often this can't cause any harm, however, it can be a signal of overuse and using your pelvic floor and/or core in the wrong way.

Because many women with pregnancy-related urinary leakage believe it will go away on its own, they do not seek help, argues Heidi Moossdorff-Steinhauser in her doctoral research "Pregnancy-related urinary incontinence, does it bother?" for Maastricht University. All the more we think it is important to inform that you do not always have to accept that you experience urinary leakage during sports and exercise. In addition, it may well be a signal from your body that you are overexerting yourself. So it is important to be well informed and guided.

Tips During Your Workout

  • Very important: keep drinking enough. If necessary, always try to go to the bathroom an extra time before exercising. 

  • Would you like to start running? From 12 weeks after childbirth you can start running under supervision.

  • Understand the importance of good breathing: breathe well during training to prevent too much abdominal pressure and do not hold your breath during exercise. 

  • Always discuss your symptoms, complaints or concerns with your trainer, midwife, family doctor or pelvic physiotherapist.

  • Listen to your body and its signals, take what you observe seriously and call on specialists.

how does Mom in balance contribute to your recovery?

Within our Pregnant and Back in Shape workouts, weekly attention is paid to training the pelvic floor. Working on restoring your core with regularity will have a direct impact on your pelvic floor. Pelvic floor muscle exercises are therefore a permanent part of our workouts during pregnancy and for the recovery afterwards (Back in Shape). Our professional trainers support you with strengthening exercises to train the strength and endurance of your pelvic floor, and relaxing exercises to learn to relax the pelvic floor in rest.

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