Meet this week’s Guest Blogger Sinéad Grogan, who is next up in my ‘Women Empowering Women’ Series.
I met Sinead in the massage matters group. Then in my journaling workshop. I was attracted to her business name GrogyBears. I thought it was very clever. A sports therapist. However little did I know what she is capable of!! An incredible professional working with women and humble beyond belief!
When Regina asked me to write something for her blog page I immediately said yes as I love everything her practice stands for. Simple and easy, what a great Motto.
The self-doubt and imposter syndrome followed almost immediately though!
What would I, a crossfit loving sports massage therapist have to add on a holistic webpage and group?? Regina put my mind at ease and said just talk about what you know and love.
I immediately thought of my passion for women’s health and how my own journey with a chronic pelvic floor dysfunction has actually shaped my career and who I am.
You see at 44 I feel fitter, healthier and happier than ever. Something I'm really proud of especially on those mornings in the gym when I am rebounding on and off a box or doing some kind of explosive movement with a heavy weight without any major concern that my pelvic floor will hold out.
I have been on both sides of fit & healthy and to be honest there was a time in my life where I couldn't run for a bus without a bladder leakage, embarrassment and shame. Because of this I stopped exercising altogether and kept my problem a secret for many, many years.
As I got older and wanted to be active again I started opening up about my problem to a nurse colleague who encouraged me to get help.
I had to go back to basics and seek help from professionals to rehab my body to function the way I wanted. It took a long time, most of my 20’s & 30's in fact, before I felt physically fit and able to have confidence in my body's ability to move freely without fear of my body letting me down. I have come such a long way from all that.
My road to recovery was winding and in the beginning I tried all sorts of gadgets and gizmos to strengthen the muscles I assumed back then were weak, all of that only made my particular problem worse in fact. Some years ago I met with a brilliant physiotherapist who told me that what I needed the most was to learn to relax the pelvic floor muscles not strengthen them.
I had had been breathing wrong my whole life it seemstoo!!
Deep breathing or diaphragmatic breathing to be precise has been a game changer in my personal road to recoveryand my confidence as a woman. I have also done a lot of study in the field of corrective exercise programming and pelvic floor health so that has helped my recovery plan too. Even as midlife hormonal changes brought about a whole new set of symptoms, I have been able to adjust and gone back to this very basic but so effective technique of deep breathing and using the breath to help me engage the right muscles when I need them the most.
Problems with the bladder are not an inevitable part of the aging process and absolutely not something we as women should just put up with. There’s loads of help out there and some of the most simple lifestyle and exercise plans are the most effective for any pelvic floor condition.
I really hope my little story inspires other woman out there to get the help they need
By: Sinead Grogan of Sg Sports & Therapy
Sports massage therapist, Holistic therapist, Registered General Nurse, Women’s Health Specialist