Could your period pain be linked to your tight hamstring muscles?
One of the first things I will check with a client is their hips to see how tight they are and if they have a hypertonic pelvic floor.
A hypertonic pelvic floor is when the pelvic floor muscles become overly tight and unable to relax.
This can cause pain when we menstruate, especially for women who have a tilted/retrograded uterus – this is when you uterus is angled or positioned slight away from the midline of the body, in a leaning back position. In this position the uterus can rest of the bowels and cause more discomfort in cycles of our period when it is full of body as the extra weigh obstructs the colon making waste elimination slightly more difficult for the body.
Hypertonic pelvic floor can occur from our hips being tight. Tight hips will come from the surrounding muscles especially our Piriformis, Obturator internus, coccygeus and hamstrings.
I suffer with pain regularly when I menstruate and my history is one of tight hamstrings from a childhood of intense football training. This postural habit has given me great legs but pain most months.
Receiving myofascia massage and womb massage has benefitted me greatly as the release of these tight areas allows my pelvic floor to relax and in turn allows my uterus to have space to contract when needed to expel my monthly blood.
My self-care routines of yoga and stretching have never been enough, because this was a postural pattern learnt from excessive exercise at a young age. I needed a release that would change that posture habit for sometime – days, weeks, months. Stretching, yoga, foam rolling was only helping for a short time. Don’t get me wrong I love all of these practices and still do them as part of my self-care routine but I am advising if you still have tight hamstrings that contribute to tight hips look into deeper ways of releasing.
With monthly treatments and self-care routines of yoga and stretching I can now keep my pain to a minimum.
The only thing is I wish I knew this a little earlier on in my life, it would have saved me so much pain. But at least I am equipped with this information now and can pass on the knowledge through my workshops and therapies.
But there is a question I have in my head, should we be looking out for this with children who are training hard at activities and sports they love?