Urinary incontinence (UI) – or the involuntary leakage of urine – is common in women. There are some things that can cause it, or make it worse: pregnancy and childbirth, menopause, prolapse, chronic respiratory conditions, ageing, obesity, smoking, constipation, diabetes, and depression.
Exercise has many important benefits, including:
Regular exercise (most days of the week) is important because not exercising is linked with obesity, diabetes, lower back pain and depression. These problems can make UI worse.
Aim to achieve activity levels recommended in the Australian National Physical Guidelines. Choose forms of exercise that are enjoyable and comfortable. If you would like to begin or continue an exercise routine that includes high impact or lifting heavy weights, but experience UI symptoms during these movements, it is recommended that you see your GP for a referral to a suitably trained Accredited Exercise Physiologist.
In addition to regular exercise, it is recommended that you start a pelvic floor muscle training program (PFMT) to improve pelvic floor strength, endurance, power, and relaxation – all of which can help to improve symptoms of UI.