Do You Pee During Your Workout?
I recently came across a video online in which several CrossFit athletes were discussing the subject of involuntary urination during a WOD. I then searched for articles online about the subject and found several. Some had really great information and some just offered the standard medical response so I felt compelled to add my two cents.
All of the articles I read attempted to explain why this involuntary urination was happening and the common denominator appears to be pelvic floor weakness. There were also several reasons cited for this weakness including aging, childbirth and lack of strength in that area. My belief is that there are as many different reasons for this condition as there are people who experience it. For this reason, each person’s condition should be assessed individually instead of everyone following the same protocol to try to fix the problem. Here are a couple of articles that had useful information and not just the standard party line: https://pelvicguru.com/2013/06/22/dear-crossfit-and-crossfit-gynecologist-im-appalled-theres-help-for-peeing-during-workouts/ http://breakingmuscle.com/womens-fitness/stop-doing-kegels-real-pelvic-floor-advice-for-women-and-men
The first point I want to make clear is that this “condition” is NOT normal and CAN be reversed without having to take medication or have surgery. There are many doctors and therapists who are unaware of this option however, so they might not be able to confirm this information for you if you ask them about it. Pelvic floor treatment is a specialized modality and isn’t covered specifically in general education settings. I know we never discussed it in massage school and unfortunately it is treated like a taboo subject in many other clinical and social settings. As an RMT in Ontario, I’m not even allowed to treat the pelvic floor internally, which is ridiculous, but that’s a topic for another article.
I attended the Women’s Health seminar as part of my continuing education in the John F. Barnes Approach to Myofascial Release (JFB-MFR) and that is where I learned the importance of treating the pelvic floor. And no, pelvic floor treatment is not only beneficial for women. Men also have problems related to pelvic floor restriction, but usually not as many as women and for our purposes here, I will only be discussing women’s concerns. Men’s concerns will be covered in another article.
Pelvic floor restriction can contribute to a number of problems for women including involuntary urination, painful or irregular periods, fertility problems, miscarriages, endometriosis, cysts, painful intercourse and any other “female issue” you can name. It can also contribute to back pain, neck pain or pain in any other area of the body, which is why a JFB-MFR therapist will