Moving Beyond Stretching: Tension is a “top-down” thing


Movement is key to pain reduction; certain types of movement can change pain & tension in the pelvis much more dramatically than stretching
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Moving Beyond Stretching: Tension is a Top-Down Thing

Join our fourth Pelvic Pain Matters webinar featuring the highly-regarded pelvic pain expert and physiotherapist, Carolyn Vandyken, who will look at the treatment implications for Chronic Pelvic Pain (CPP) patients from findings in a ground-breaking, new patient study.

Carolyn will be joined by Malina Kelly from Curtin University, Perth, who was instrumental in developing and overseeing the study.

The study strongly suggests that that movement is key to pain reduction and how certain types of movement can change pain and tension in the pelvic region much more dramatically than stretching.

Persistent pelvic pain is strongly connected to overactive pelvic floor muscles.

An overactive pelvic floor has been shown to be connected with a sensitive nervous system.

The nervous system is gloriously designed to let us know what it needs by getting our attention when our system is overwhelmed. Stress, fear, anxiety, work overload and trauma can all threaten health and wellbeing.

Pain is one of the languages that our nervous system uses to get our attention. Muscle tension and spasm are another. Pain and muscle tension are designed to slow us down and they sure aren’t pleasant.

If we want to change our experience of pain and muscle tension, we need to understand the language of our nervous system – even if it feels foreign and difficult to master. But how do we understand that language?

The newly developed Fremantle Perineal Awareness Questionnaire assists with the ‘translation’ by assessing whether changes in the brain area controlling sensation and tension are linked to the patient’s pain problem.

Carolyn will share how the questionnaire gives cues that moving differently may change pain and tension in the pelvic region. The solution may involve remapping or reorganising default strategies for using the pelvis, including sitting, movement, eliminating and sexual function.

Join Carolyn to learn how novel, interesting movement strategies may be more effective at changing how we guard and hold tension in our pelvis, moving beyond stretching of tight muscles to a more effective CPP solution.

This webinar is for:

  • Pelvic pain patients of all genders
  • Family and friends of pelvic pain patients
  • Professionals who treat pelvic pain patients or have an interest in starting up their own pelvic pain practice

Why should pelvic pain patients attend?

  1. Gain an appreciation of the role the central nervous system plays in persistent pain.
  2. Become self-empowered to change your relationship with tension in the pelvic floor muscles.

Why should professionals attend?

  1. Learn about a brand-new questionnaire to help identify the presence of sensory-motor changes in persistent pelvic pain.
  2. Discover a novel approach to alleviate pelvic floor muscle tension based on sensory-motor change, creating a sustainable resolution for persons in pain.

Real Life Stories

Our webinars feature real-life stories of people who have overcome chronic pelvic pain. We always aim to have a clinical and patient perspective on the panel and questions from the audience are a really important part of our events.

Carolyn Vandyken

Carolyn is a physiotherapist, educator, researcher and advocate in the areas of low back pain, pelvic health and pain science. She became an MDT credentialled therapist in 1999, holds a CBT certificate from Wilfred University, and has been practicing in the field of pelvic health for the past 20 years. Practicing as a physiotherapist for 34 years, she teaches post-graduate pelvic health courses that are steeped in pain science and won the distinguished Education Award from the OPA in 2015 and the YWCA Women of Distinction Award in 2004. Carolyn presents extensively at international conferences and has co-authored multiple chapters and papers on central pain mechanisms and pelvic pain. She is actively involved in research with Dr. Sinead Dufour (McMaster University, Canada) and Dr. Judith Thompson (Curtin University, Australia) and has published multiple studies on the connection between low back pain and pelvic floor dysfunction. Carolyn co-owns a multi-disciplinary teaching company called Reframe Rehab and is engaged in breaking down the barriers internationally between pelvic health, orthopaedics and pain science.

Additional information

Clinician or Patient?

Clinicians, Patients