A few months ago, Rixa at Stand and Deliver posted about a giveaway opportunity to review a new product designed to help women address their pelvic floor prolapse issues. Since that has been one my most major concerns this pregnancy, I volunteered to be a reviewer.
After getting pregnant again, it became clear to me that my hip issues were connected to other places where I have been experiencing pain. Back when I was pregnant with Belle, there was situation where I found myself 28 weeks pregnant with a resistant toddler just when I saw the bus we needed to get was pulling in across the street. The toddler (Willem) wouldn't walk and I didn't want to wait another 30 hour with a tired, hungry toddler at the bus stop for the next bus. I grabbed him and ran. As a result, I pulled a ligament on my pubic bone. It was that ligament that caused me to stop participating in my Irish dance company because the weight of the pregnancy and the pain in that ligament was too much. My hip issues then started a few weeks later and continued intermittently. The ligament didn't give me any more trouble after Belle's birth; that is, until I got pregnant this third time. Its been bothering me more than my hip has the last few months.
Between pregnancies, I also noticed that I was experiencing some minor prolapse issues with my pelvic floor. It seemed to be worst when I was wearing a heavy 25 pound toddler on either my front or back. My hip would also start hurting and I'd feel that familiar ache into my thigh bone. It with those experiences that I concluded that all my hip trouble is likely related. My pelvis has been through a lot the last 6 years of childbearing and mothering!
My goal for this pregnancy was to find some effective ways to address these issues so they would not get worse after this baby was born. I've spent the last year trying to strengthen my body with regular exercise through a gym membership and personal training. I think its made a difference because here I am 32 weeks pregnant with only minor stiffness and achiness in my hip joint.
I had considered for quite a long time finding a skilled Physical Therapist to address the pelvic floor issues but for various reasons felt that I wasn't sure about the effectiveness in regards to the cost. I wanted to learn more before I made that investment.
Some friends introduced to me the company Whole Woman about the time Rixa posted about reviewing the Laselle exercisers. For Christmas, I purchased the First Aid for Prolapse DVD and its a good thing I did because I started using the Laselle exerciser before and it became much more effective after learning the principles taught in the DVD.
Since receiving the Laselle exerciser, I've tried to use it for about an hour at a time a few days a week. Usually, I use breakfast time for it because I'm able to focus on my posture while I cook and sit to eat.
At first, especially before viewing the Whole Woman DVD, I found the Laselle exerciser more annoying and discouraging than anything else. It seemed like it didn't matter what I did, but the exerciser would not stay positioned and I'd have to reposition it every few minutes.
After viewing the DVD, I learned that the explanation was probably in my posture. After spending a couple of weeks trying to retrain myself to hold my body, I started using the Laselle exerciser again. I find now that I better understand how to isolate my pelvic floor muscles and focus on holding the LaSelle exerciser in.
Because the exerciser is a weighted ball, its unlike something that is designed to stay inside the vaginal opening without falling out. It rolls out and the goal is for the woman to be able to use her muscles to hold it in and prevent it from rolling out.
I do plan to continue using the exerciser now that the review period is over. I'm especially greatful from what I have learned from the Woman Woman DVD and will continue to remember those principles of good posture. Because I am currently pregnant, I find that I cannot easily do all the movements in the Whole Woman DVD. Its not designed for pregnancy at all so I will pick up with that after the early postpartum period is over. I believe it will be a wonderful DVD to use to get back into exercise after the baby is born.
Until then, I find that using Spinning Babies for baby positioning, pelvic rocks, hands and knees position, focusing on proper posture, using the Laselle exerciser and belly dancing (using my new Belly Dance for Birth DVD!) are all helping my hips feel good and to address my pelvic floor issues without making them worse with the advancing pregnancy. A good diet of plenty of protein and fiber has also been really important to prevent constipation. Green smoothies and rice and beans are my new best friends.
In conclusion, I highly recommend learning the principles of Whole Woman posture because that is what I have found most helpful in addressing my prolapse issues. The Laselle exerciser is a helpful way to practice and ensure that I'm getting the posture right. For that reason, I feel like the Laselle exerciser would be more effective if the product included more information regarding its use, specifically counseling women on good posture to prevent and correct prolapse issues from occuring.