Here’s Why Standing On Your Head Won’t Fix Your Prolapse!

Prolapse FixAre you trying to fix your prolapse without surgery?

What works and what doesn’t?

Here’s a quick sample of prolapse fixes women ask about:

  • Head stands
  • Hanging upside down
  • Pilates
  • Inversion machines
  • Yoga inversion poses
  • Pelvic organ manipulation therapy
  • Pelvic floor exercises
  • Pessaries
  • Diet supplements
  • Hormones
  • Genital bracing …

Read on now to find out:

  1. What holds your insides up?
  2. Quick prolapse fixes that waste your time and money
  3. Non-surgical prolapse treatments that can help

Prolapse Exercises e-Book

International best selling prolapse exercise guide for women with prolapse and after prolapse surgery.

Prolapse Exercises Book

Prolapse Exercises teaches you how to:

  • Exercise safely after prolapse surgery
  • Reduce your risk or repeat prolapse
  • Avoid unsafe exercises
  • Choose pelvic floor safe exercises
  • Reduce your risk of prolapse worsening
  • Improve prolapse support
  • Increase your strength and fitness
  • Strengthen your core
  • Lose weight

The Lure Of A Quick Prolapse Fix

Who doesn’t want a quick no fuss fix!

Unfortunately there’s no quick prolapse fix aside from well fitting support pessary or successful prolapse repair surgery.

ElasticityWhy not?

It’s all to do with your inner elasticity.

Imagine stretching an elastic band. When stretched to a certain point the elastic recoils and the elastic band retains its shape, strength and elasticity.

If you overstretch the elastic it loses its elasticity and becomes just like stretching a piece of chewing gum.

Overstretching caused your prolapse and this is why you feel may feel heaviness and dragging especially after being on your feet for long hours.

1. What Holds Your Insides Up?

There are 2 types of tissues inside your pelvis that hold your pelvic organs up (ie. bladder, uterus, vagina, rectum).

a. Strong supportive tissues

These strong tissues known as (ligaments and tissue known as fascia) allow some movement of the pelvic organs while retaining them in position inside your body.

b. Pelvic floor muscles

Your pelvic floor muscles should work with your strong internal tissues to support your pelvic organs and prevent prolapse. If your pelvic floor muscles are overstretched they become weak, less elastic and less able to support your pelvic organs.

This is why pelvic floor exercises for prolapse that strengthen and support the pelvic floor muscles are effective prolapse therapy for some women.

2. Quick Prolapse Fixes That Don’t Work Long-Term Hand stands

While some women can temporarily relieve prolapse symptoms by hanging upside down on an inversion table as soon as they spend time upright again their pelvic organs will move back to the stretched position.

Unfortunately overstretched tissues don’t regain their elasticity.

This  is why head stands and other such prolapse repair methods may temporarily lessen prolapse symptoms but won’t fix your prolapse including:

  • Inversion Yoga poses e.g. shoulder stands
  • Hand stands
  • Inversion tables
  • Pelvic organ manipulation
  • Genital bracing

3. Non – Surgical Prolapse Treatments That Can Help

The following prolapse treatments won’t fix your stretched elastic pelvic tissues however they can relieve prolapse symptoms, delay or even avoid prolapse surgery in some women.

1. Pelvic Floor Exercises

Pelvic floor exercises can help women with mild to moderate prolapse improve their overall pelvic organ support. Appropriate pelvic floor strengthening has been shown to reduce prolapse symptoms and severity by lifting the pelvic floor to sit higher inside the pelvis.1

Pelvic floor exercises for prolapse aren’t necessarily a quick fix. Some women make rapid initial gains in their pelvic floor strength over the first few weeks however 5 months of pelvic floor exercises are recommended to achieve strength changes and improved function.

Support Pessaries2. Support Pessaries

Synthetic support pessary devices are often fitted inside the vagina for varying degrees of prolapse ranging from mild to severe prolapse.

Pessaries take on the role that the support tissues previously played before becoming stretched.

Genital braces will not fix prolapse long-term. These items sit outside the body and can’t perform role of internal tissue supports i.e. lifting from the outside can’t fix or even lift your insides.

Support briefs may help relieve prolapse symptoms particularly in women prone to carrying abdominal body weight. This observation is based upon patient report and not supported by scientific investigation.

3. Lifestyle Modifications

Changing features of your lifestyle that impact upon your prolapse may reduce your prolapse symptoms and help your pelvic floor strengthening.

Weight loss exercise

Lifestyle modifications to help your prolapse may include:

4. Bowel and Bladder Habits

Good bowel and bladder habits to avoid straining may help relieve prolapse symptoms in women who habitually strain to empty.

Managing your bowels well with appropriate diet and bowel emptying techniques is key for long-term prolapse management.

Key Points To Fix Your Prolapse

  • Pelvic organ prolapse results when elastic support tissues supporting them become overstretched, inelastic and weak.
  • Some quick fixes for prolapse provide minimal temporary symptom relief only e.g. standing on your head.
  • Non-surgical prolapse treatments such pelvic floor exercises, lifestyle modifications and support pessaries can help some women delay or avoid the need for prolapse surgery.

Bo K and Asheghaug A (2007) Strength Training. In: Evidence-Based Physical Therapy for the Pelvic Floor: Bridging Science and Clinical Practice (2007) Bo K, Berghmans B, Morkved S, Van Kampen M Butterworth Heinemann Elsevier pp 119-132.

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We Welcome Your Comments


  1. Thank you SO much for this website. I have been wandering in the wilderness before finding you. So much great info presented so well. I am motivated to try and avoid surgery if possible and am ordering book and video, thank you so very much for making this information available to the public at such a reasonable cost.

  2. Hi Michelle:
    Before I ask my question or make comments, I would like to complement you on the quality of your latest videos.
    I am the woman from California who has a severe hearing loss and needed help with understanding the important information you were sharing with us. You wrote back saying that you would have more closeups in your videos for lip reading purposes; and it has absolutely helped. That change, along with the program notes following each and every video, made a huge difference for me, and I thank you for your interest and sensitivity.
    My question is related to a previous answer you gave in this issue, that mentioned “with menopause and beyond, connective tissues become stiff and more prone to injury as collagen declines after menopause … This is why women are getting aches and pains they never had before.”
    Until this time, I had not read anything that explains why I may be hurting, (besides getting older), and gives some brief general guidelines related to muscle strengthening, avoiding high impact activities, excessive stretching, etc.
    I am a menopausal woman who gets these aches and pains, and would like to know even more as to how to avoid them (mostly), if possible. I do work out at the gym; twice a week, and thanks to your website, I realize what I have unknowingly done in the past to contribute to my pelvic floor disfunction. Fortunately, your pelvic floor exercises in your book, “Inside Out,” have helped improve some of the damage I have already done.
    Nonetheless, My focus is to continue strengthening my body, without taking the proverbial one step forward and two steps back, so to speak. I want to make progress, but do it in a way that helps me achieve my goal with as little discomfort as possible. I am tired of feeling creaky.
    If I am missing anything, please let me know.
    Your guidance is most appreciated!

    • Michelle Kenway Physiotherapist says

      Hi Cindy

      Yes the collagen changes do explain some of the physical dysfunction and discomfort associated with menopause. Some ladies suddenly start experiencing aches and pains they’ve never had before. The key really is whole body strengthening using appropriate exercises and techniques that protect the joints while strengthening the muscles. Muscle strengthening is key as strong muscles will support and protect their associated joints. Does this make sense and answer your question somewhat? So if you’re suffering lower back problems then strengthening the core muscles that surround the trunk and support the back will help. I am a strong believer in whole body strengthening to support the lower back too for example strong legs and buttocks help during everyday function and help to unload the lower back during activities e.g. squatting using the leg muscles to lift rather than bending forwards and using the back

      Thanks so much for your comment and feedback – I’m glad the changes to the videos are helping you. I did try to use YouTube captioning for the videos too however it’s still very time consuming to transcribe each video and match the voice over to the correct timing, I will have to wait until they can make the captioning easier for (time poor) video producers.

      Let me know if this helps

  3. Hi Michelle, Thanks so much for this website. I have a question regarding pessaries. I have one but every time I try using it I get a yeast infection. Previously I have not had a yeast infection in many years. I’m doing all the right things as far as keeping the pessary clean, inserting it, etc. One GYN provider thinks I’m allergic to the silicone which is what the pessary is made of. Another GYN provider thinks it’s just the fact that it’s something foreign in my vagina and the reaction is a yeast infection. I really like using the pessary and do not want to have surgery. I’m doing prolapse exercises which is at least keeping the prolapse where it’s at right now (I have both uterus and bladder prolapses that are fairly far along). My question is do you know of any pessary that is not made of silicone or latex? I look forward to your answer. Thanks so much, -Donna

    • Michelle Kenway Physiotherapist says

      Hi Donna
      Yes there are vinyl pessaries available – I am not sure which country you live in. I do know of an Australian supplier if you reside in Australia let me know. Otherwise if you run a search for vinyl pessary this might yield your answer. I hope this helps you resolve this issue!

      All the best

      • Hi Michelle, I just wanted to give you and others an update in case someone out there is having a problem getting yeast infections while wearing a silicone pessary (I never get yeast infection otherwise). A friend who is a homeopathist suggested that I take Women’s Fem Dophilus capsules made by Jarrow; it’s a probiotic for vaginal/urinary tract health and it worked completely for me. Since I started using it I haven’t had a yeast infection so I’m able to keep using the pessary every day. Thanks so much for your website.

  4. Carole Spiers says

    Dear Michelle

    I have a prolapse and vaginal swelling and have been fitted with a pessary. The cervix descends to the introitus.

    I have avidly been watching your videos [wish I had started sooner] and would like to buy one of your books.

    I have started to do the kegel exercises with no problem and wonder which book of yours is best to buy.

    Also is it better to exercise without the pessary or is it as effective with it.

    A reply would really be appreciated.



    • Michelle Kenway Physiotherapist says

      Hi Carole

      You might choose to commence your exercises with the pessary in place as this may foreseeably unload your pelvic floor and make the exercises achievable.The important thing will be to do your strengthening when your pelvic floor isn’t fatigued.

      You will benefit most from the Prolapse Exercises Book for more information to assist you if you’re interested.

      All the best

  5. Thanks for the article!

    I am 2 years post menopause, no hormone therapy, 48 yrs old, discovered prolapse 7 weeks ago. I have been dutifully doing pelvic floor exercises for 3 weeks already, and I have your workout video and book, which are excellent. I have been thinking about ligaments and such lately because it occurred to me I have other areas with ligament problems.

    For a few years I have had one side of my clavicle poking out further than the other, presumably, stretched connective tissue. I am a freckled, fair-skinned woman. I bruise easily, any my skin is delicate – heredity, of course… But I wonder:

    1) Are there any connective tissue diseases that could conceivably contribute to prolapse?
    2) Is there anything I can do to encourage connective tissue health?

    • Michelle Kenway says

      Hi Susan

      Great questions!

      Yes connective tissue problems associated with ligament laxity can happen throughout the whole body – prolapse is just one to the potential issues. Ligament laxity or looseness means that joints become more unstable and more vulnerable to injury since the support isn’t as good as it might be otherwise. In everyday language ligaments are strong tissues that hold joints in position. If the ligaments are lax or loose then the joints aren’t as firmly held together as they might be otherwise. Good examples are repeated ankle sprains or shoulder dislocations where the ligaments are stretched and so the associated joints often become unstable and subject to repeat injury.

      Connective tissue isn’t just ligaments – there are strong connective tissues throughout our bodies.

      Unfortunately with menopause and beyond our connective tissues become stiff and more prone to injury as our collagen declines. This is why many women peri/post menopause all of a sudden find that they are getting aches and pains that they never had before menopause. From a physio perspective the keys are to strengthen the muscles around the joints to help take the load off the ligaments and provide support as well as avoiding the types of activities/exercises that can strain the joints such as high impact exercises, over stretching etc Obviously eating well is vital for muscle strengthening ensuring adequate protein and carbohydrate intake to optimise muscles strengthening.

      Hope this gives you some ideas Susan, thanks again for your qns!