Pelvic Physical Therapy
At Partnership in Therapy we treat multiple kinds of conditions, including pelvic, back and neck, and breast; our physical therapists have extensive experience and expertise in many facets of physical therapy. Because pelvic physical therapy is a lesser-known speciality, however, people often have questions about it. Here you will find a general overview of the specialty of "pelvic PT," and a video with Dr. Pamela Downey explaining more about the anatomy and functions of the pelvic floor.
Video with Dr. Pamela Downey
In this video, Dr. Pamela Downey, owner of Partnership in Therapy and a nationally recognized expert in the speciality of pelvic physical therapy, discusses the anatomy of the pelvic floor and how it functions. Dr. Downey also speaks about how she came to work in this field, and how Pilates can play a role in pelvic floor health.
What is pelvic physical therapy?
Pelvic physical therapy is a sub-speciality of physical therapy. The pelvic muscles form essentially a "sling" or cradle in your pelvis, running alongside and around the anus, urethra, vagina (in women), and prostate (in men). When pelvic muscles become very tense and/or dysfunctional, it can result in pain, discomfort, and other serious physical difficulties. Certain medical conditions can worsen if there is pelvic floor dysfunction present. Abdominal muscles and upper thigh muscles that interact with the pelvic floor can also be involved in and exacerbate pelvic pain.
During pelvic physical therapy, a physical therapist manually works on pelvic muscles and adjacent muscles to lengthen them and release trigger points. This type of physical therapy is done externally (outside the body) and internally (vaginally in women, rectally in men). Pelvic physical therapists have completed extensive training in this delicate, precise work. We may use biofeedback and myofascial release in a session, and give clients exercises which they can do at home. Physical therapy on the pelvic floor brings relief and improvement to many men and women suffering from pelvic pain. At Partnership in Therapy, a client is treated in a private room to ensure privacy during the session, and wears a soft, cotton hospital-type gown or a drape to ensure comfort.