VIDEO: The Knack Technique: How to Prevent Urinary Leakage

Clinical Expertise

May 21, 2021

Medical Reviewer: Hope Padgett, PT, DPT
Last Updated: May 24, 2021

Video Transcript

My name is Hope Padgett, and I’m one of the pelvic health physical therapists here at Brooks Rehabilitation.

One of the common complaints my patients have is that they have a little bit of leaking with a cough, laugh, or sneeze. An easy way to get around this is to practice what is called the knack technique. Think of this as a squeeze before you sneeze.

What you’re going to do is, before you cough or laugh or sneeze, you’re going to give a little bit of a pelvic floor contraction. Think of lifting the pelvic floor up and in before you cough, laugh, or sneeze. What this does is it gives your body a little extra cue to contract those muscles, to prevent the leaking of urine.

We can practice this at home by starting with just a small cough when you sneeze, squeeze, (coughs), and then try to progress to a bigger and bigger cough. Start sitting down so that you
have a little extra support and your pelvic floor doesn’t have to work so hard.

And then as it gets easier for you, you can practice coughing and sneezing with the squeeze while standing. This can also help support the pelvic floor when you’re lifting something heavy. So as you go down to pick something up, squeeze the pelvic floor and exhale as you lift the object up to standing. This can go for kids, heavy objects at work, a big diaper bag, a big work bag, groceries. Making sure to really squeeze and engage the pelvic floor before we’re physically active can help to prevent urinary incontinence.

I hope this information was helpful for you, and if you’re still having issues with urinary incontinence with cough, laugh, or squeeze, or your daily activity, including your workouts, make sure to get in contact with your friendly neighborhood pelvic health physical therapist.

For more healthy living tips, visit our YouTube Playlist.

Medical Reviewer

Hope Padgett, PT, DPT

Pelvic Health Physical Therapist
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