Can physical therapy exercises improve bowel function?

Can physical therapy exercises improve bowel function?
Can physical therapy exercises improve bowel function?

Physical therapy exercises can potentially help improve bowel function in some cases, particularly when constipation is related to issues such as pelvic floor dysfunction or musculoskeletal problems.

Pelvic floor physical therapy, in particular, is a specialized area of physical therapy that focuses on addressing problems with the pelvic floor muscles, which play a crucial role in bowel function.

Here are some ways in which physical therapy exercises can aid in improving bowel function:

  1. Pelvic Floor Strengthening: Physical therapists can teach patients exercises to strengthen the pelvic floor muscles, which can help with better control and coordination during bowel movements.
  2. Pelvic Floor Relaxation: In some cases, constipation may be caused by overly tense pelvic floor muscles. Physical therapy can include relaxation techniques to help patients learn to release and relax these muscles when needed.
  3. Posture and Body Mechanics: Physical therapists can educate individuals on proper posture and body mechanics during bowel movements, which can make the process more efficient and reduce straining.
  4. Abdominal Exercises: Strengthening the abdominal muscles through targeted exercises may help improve the overall function of the digestive system and reduce constipation.
  5. Breathing Techniques: Proper breathing techniques can aid in relaxing the abdominal and pelvic floor muscles, making it easier to have a bowel movement.


It’s important to note that the effectiveness of physical therapy for constipation depends on the underlying cause of the issue. Before starting any physical therapy program, it’s essential to consult with a healthcare provider to determine the cause of constipation and whether physical therapy is an appropriate treatment option. A thorough evaluation by a physical therapist with expertise in pelvic health is often necessary to develop a tailored treatment plan.

Treatment options for pelvic floor therapy

Pelvic floor physical therapy is valuable for both men and women who experience pelvic floor issues, such as constipation, incontinence, pelvic pain, and sexual dysfunction. It can significantly improve quality of life and help individuals regain control and confidence in their pelvic health.

At PhysioFit of NC, we have the expert team in pelvic floor physical therapy to help you to the fullest.

We provide a comprehensive treatment approach through our Women’s Health Program.  This includes manual therapy and exercises to improve conditions related to the pelvic floor muscles.

Don’t hesitate to contact us today so we can help you!