Why Your Pelvic Floor Is the Secret to a Stronger Core and Better Sex

Christina Stoltz at Be Well Philly Boot Camp 2013 | Photo by JPG Photography

Christina Stoltz at Be Well Philly Boot Camp 2013 | Photo by JPG Photography

This year is seriously flying by, you guys. I mean, it’s almost May, for goodness’ sake, which means we’re just over a month out from the fifth annual Be Well Philly Boot Camp, our massive day of fitness and wellness just for women. It’s a day of positivity, empowerment and motivation, and a celebration of all-around female badassery, with amped-up fitness classes, inspiring speakers, top local chefs and lots more. In a nutshell, it is awesome.

Over the next month, we’ll be previewing some of what’s in store for this year’s Be Well Philly Boot Camp participants. First up, we chatted with Christina Stoltz, owner of the Pilates-based Northern Liberties fitness studio, Ploome. We’re huge fans of Christina around these parts, and if you’ve been to Boot Camp before, you probably remember her oh-so-fabulous outdoor fitness classes. This year, she’ll be leading a new-to-Boot Camp class called Stripp’d: Cardio-Core Workout in our outdoor fitness tent, but she’ll also be pulling double duty as a featured speaker in our Speakers’ Lounge. 

See, Christina’s a bit of a rock-star expert when it comes to all things body movement — particularly as it relates to a not-talked-about-enough part of your body called the pelvic floor. So we invited her to share her Yoda-like knowledge on this particular bit of anatomy which, as she says, is the “dark secret of the core.” Intrigued? We are, too.

Christina is giving us a taste of what’s to come in the Q&A below, but be sure to check her out at Boot Camp, too, for her chat, “Power to the P: Why Your Pelvic Floor Is the Secret to a Stronger Core and Better Sex.” You will not be disappointed.

First things first: What the heck is the pelvic floor?
The pelvic floor is the dark secret of the core. It’s the root of all movement and activity in the body. The pelvic floor is a complex myriad of muscles, ligaments, tissue and bone — the bone is called the pelvic girdle — right in the center of the body. The pelvic floor dictates the strength and trajectory of all our movements, and by contracting the pelvic floor and connecting it with breath, you can harness the untapped potential of the inside of your body to move the outside of your body.

Do men have pelvic floors?
Men have pelvic floors just like women, though they are different in shape. In women, the muscles of the pelvic floor support the function of the vagina, bladder, uterus and rectum. In men, they support the bladder and rectum.

Why is it important to strengthen the pelvic floor?
It’s important to understand how and why our pelvic floors work. For women, you can learn how to relax cramping, and better utilize the vaginal canal and muscles. For men, it can help prevent sports-related injuries, particularly hernias and groin-muscle pulls. Many of the male athletes we work with have some sort of hernia or groin injury that has to do with overwork of the muscles around the pelvic muscles, so we work on strengthening the muscles of the pelvic floor to help them rehabilitate. And in both men and women, strengthening the pelvic floor and learning how to engage its muscles can intensify sexual pleasure.

What do you want participants at Be Well Philly Boot Camp to walk away with from your chat?
It’s hard to understand what the pelvic floor is if you’ve never given ourself the chance to find it or feel it. So we’ll be reviewing some key exercises that that’ll give you that “A-ha!” moment; my goal is to help you understand the sensation of contracting and tightening a set of muscles that you may not even realize you have. Many fitness instructors and even studio owners aren’t familiar with that sensation in their own body, so when someone gets it, it’s a pretty big moment.

Ladies, you can check out Christina’s talk, “Power to the P: Why Your Pelvic Floor Is the Secret to a Stronger Core and Better Sex,” at Be Well Philly Boot Camp on Saturday, June 4th. And in the lead-up to the event, she’s hosting a virtual challenge through Ploome, launching on May 5th (Note: You have to enroll by May 1st), that gives you access to a slew of pelvic-floor-strengthening (and more) workouts, an accountability journal and a supportive community to help you reach your goals. Check out the challenge promo below — seriously, you can’t not love a woman who dresses up like a super hero just to get you hyped about fitness — and get more details on how to participate here.

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