Run Like a Queen: 5 Pelvic Health Exercises To Empower Your Running.Sep 12, 2023
This post was inspired by a question I received in a DM last week: “I really want to focus on 4-5 moves so I can get my technique correct and have a solid foundation. Could you tell me the moves you think are best for good pelvic health and basic strength?”
If you have questions, just ask!
To answer the question above, I first asked myself the question. What skills or movement patterns are “most” important for runners when it comes to Pelvic Health Exercises? "Most” in quotes as always because everyone is different and all the same things will not be important for everyone. In most cases, however, the answer is:
- A good stack
- Orient the pelvis without squeezing the glutes
- Exhale without crunching down from the top
- Diaphragmatic inhale with 360 Rib Cage Expansion
- Being able to rotate
- Move through internal and external rotation at the pelvis (why this is so important for the pelvic floor here)
- Counterrotation of the torso - aka. ribs that move 360 degrees
- Feet that can move well: spread, lengthen and ground into the floor
From there I did my best to pick 5 exercises to practice/reinforce these skills and strengthen these patterns and improve running.
5 Key Exercises to Increasing Pelvic Floor Health for Runners
This one is a warm-up (running warm-ups included) staple that practices moving through anterior and posterior pelvic tilts without overly clenching the glutes or abs.
This is also something I use with warm-ups (running warm-ups included) or accessory work to practice finding length in the glute/posterior pelvic floor. This is a major sticking point for efficient pelvic rotation for many people. What’s happening at the foot is an important part of this too! As you shift back into the hip, keep the knee bent over your midfoot to help stay grounded on the floor.
A more strength-building exercise with a similar goal as the hip shift, finding length in the backside and then loading through that length. Again, what’s happening at the foot is an important part of this too! As you move through your hinge, keep the knee bent over your midfoot to help stay grounded on the floor.
As you squat you move through rotation at the pelvis. Elevating the front foot is helpful for many people because it shifts your center of mass back behind the foot to start and somewhat mimics gait as you move from a negative to a positive shin angle over that foot as you squat down.
There are lots of ways we can build in counter rotation of the torso on top. This just happened to be a favorite of mine. However, it and the rest of these, assume you have ribs that move well 360 degrees around already. This unfortunately is not usually the case. We can be compressed or stuck in different places and not all strategies work for all people, but this Inverted Rockback Breathing is a many birds, one stone, good start.
All of these Pelvic Health Exercises are included in all of my programs in some capacity.
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