What is the pelvic floor?

The pelvic floor consists of a group of muscles that close the bottom of the pelvis. Try to imagine the pelvic floor as a sort of hammock.
The pelvic floor has three openings for the woman: the urethra, the vagina and the anus. In the man, the pelvic floor has two openings: the urethra and the anus.

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cross-section female pelvis cross section male pelvis

Function of the pelvic floor

Support for organs.
The pelvic floor supports the organs in the abdomen: the bladder and the rectum, and also the woman’s uterus. A firm pelvic floor also ensures that there is no prolapse of these organs. Proper contraction of the pelvic floor muscles is necessary for normal urination and bowel movement functions.

The prevention of urinary and faecal loss.
A good pelvic floor contracts automatically (unconsciously) to raised abdominal pressure activities (coughing, sneezing, lifting, running, etc.). This prevents urinary or faecal loss during these activities.

The functioning of the sexual organs.
A too tense pelvic floor can cause problems for the woman during sexual intercourse (inability to have intercourse or pain complaints). A pelvic floor that is too slack can cause less sensation during sex, more difficulty in reaching an orgasm or incontinence during intercourse or orgasm.
A good erection is achieved by increasing the blood flow to the sex organs. Erectile problems can be caused because the tension of the pelvic floor is too high, which results in a reduced blood supply to the penis.

Read more:
Pelvic (floor) disorders
Pelvic disorders and pregnancy
Therapy options