Pelvic Floor BLOG

How to Stop Incontinence/Leakage with Double Unders - 6 Tips to start today!

Try working through these tips one by one so you can see which helps you most. Grab a skipping rope and lets get started! Keep reading below or watch the video for more detail! 

First, let's talk about our body position while we are jumping. It helps to just first take a moment and look sideways in a mirror. As women, we are notorious for hanging forward into our hips. We stand like this, walk like this, run like this, even jump like this. This posture does not allow our pelvic floor to work well for us because of the position it is in.
Instead, think “tits over toes” (LOL), or bring your ribs over your pelvis, or think about a 10 degree forward lean at your ankle joint. Think about this when you jump! You have now put your pelvic floor in a better position to be able to work for you when you need it.

Next, just jump up and down! We tend to do some crazy body positions as soon as we start to do the double under. This is unnecessary. All you should have to do is jump higher, rather than piking or lifting your knees up. Your body should still stay in the straight line that it does when you are skipping. Practice doing “high” regular skips, trying to get more vertical, and then incorporate the double under when you are comfortable with that.

Next, let's look at your breathing pattern! When you take a deep breath in, do your chest and shoulders rise up, or do they stay still and your belly and sides expand? Its supposed to be the latter. Your chest and shoulders should stay still, with the air expanding into your belly and sides. This likely gets worse as you exert effort. A contributor to leaking with exercise is this “high” breathing pattern, as your diaphragm (your breathing muscle) works as a team with your pelvic floor. Your pelvic floor needs your diaphragm to lower and lift with your breathing for it to work best, and when your air only goes “high”, into your chest and shoulders, your diaphragm doesn’t get to move. Even worse, you might be breath holding!
Try with skipping now, make sure at least some of your breaths are getting down to your belly.

Going even further with our breathing with tip number 4 is trying burst exhales. This one can be hard to coordinate for some, but when you can, can really help turn your pelvic floor on! Doing the exhale helps to engage your pelvic floor during the jump, to ensure no urine slips out. Practice first with your high single skips, thinking about blowing out a birthday candle when you jump.

Tip 5 is simple, and is to just avoid caffeine a couple of hours before a work out. Having caffeine or other bladder irritants in your bladder during a workout is more irritating for your bladder lining, and makes your bladder want to get rid of it faster, and therefore makes us more prone to leaking too. Instead, wait until after your workout to enjoy your cup of java!

Lastly, if you still feel you need some extra help, a pessary can work wonders to keep those undies dry. A pessary is a devise that you insert into your vagina that puts pressure on your urethra from inside your vagina. The extra pressure on your urethra can help to close it in response to pressure, when muscle weakness prevents it from doing it well enough itself. There are a few different pessary options. You can get a one time use disposable one from the drugstore. Poise Impressa is the brand name of one. Similarly, there is a brand called Uresta, which you can order online and take in and out when needed. They suggest you replace it every 12 months. Lastly you can get a few different shaped and sized pessaries fitted and prescribed by your doctor or gynaecologist that you can learn to take in and out yourself as well. When a pessary fits well, you can’t feel it when it is inserted, similar to a tampon or cup.

Check out these FREE Pelvic Floor Resources

Free Guides and How-to Videos on Incontinence and Prolapse from a Pelvic Floor Expert leading the way in treatment. 

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