Pelvic Floor Goddess, Leslie Howard Creates Magical Space.

Via on Feb 27, 2011

Love your pelvis.
~Leslie Howard

I first came into contact with the work of Leslie Howard in June 2010 when she came to do a workshop at Yogaview in Chicago, and I was quickly transformed into a big fan of her teaching. It was so exciting to have a formal introduction to my pelvic floor!

It was almost as if a pelvic floor goddess had said, “Hi Brooks, here is your pelvis.” because in the time between then and now my pelvis has indeed been making herself heard.

Leslie Howard and Ruby, the pelvis
Leslie Howard with her model pelvis in one hand and a model femur bone in the other at Yogaview in Chicago.

My first meeting with Leslie Howard created a magical space for me to meet my pelvis on a neutral background. Before that, my pelvis had been colored by mostly bad memories.

I’m sure that many female pelvises have had it much worse, but my pelvis has suffered, too. She was beaten with a belt, bitten by dogs, touched meanly by boys… As a child she was told to keep her knees together, else flies would go in. Many more horrible (to me) stories, or maybe just ordinary…

Maybe you have a few stories about yourself or other pelvises?

Well, at some point it seems I cut myself off from a relationship with my own pelvis! Only an extremely functional connection was present. So it also seems that we needed an introduction to get things on a healthy and loving track.

In the time since the first workshop, I have been inspired in my yoga practice and teaching to include more points about the pelvis. I even started a research project and blog called mulabloga to honor this budding interest. And it has felt so great to welcome her in—my pelvis!

And I just had the good fortune to experience Leslie Howard again this weekend at Yogaview!

She and her model pelvis, named “Ruby”, introduced workshop participants to the anatomy of the pelvis, including the beautiful bones, organs, and musculature “down there”. We also did exercises and partner work to get a better sense of how to work and relax this important part of the body.

"Ruby" the pelvis.
"Ruby" the female pelvis is handled by loving hands.

It is a place to be loved and honored.

My pelvis has always seemed to be a vulnerable site for attack.

Sometimes when I’m practicing yoga, including awareness of my pelvic floor, I feel just horrible—almost sick. I think it’s just the old feelings bubbling off. And other times I feel simply great and more whole than I did when I was unconsciously avoiding the truth of my pelvis, which contains both beauty and horror.

So the truth for me seems to be that I love my pelvis, and now perhaps I also have the maturity and courage to be there for her sorrows, too.

I know that my pelvis needs honoring, and that this honoring starts with me.

Dearest pelvis, my one and only, I will treat you with love and care…

* See Leslie Howard’s website here. *

About Brooks Hall

Brooks Hall is a Yogic Muse from Chicago, Illinois. In this capacity she teaches Yoga, writes about Yoga, and generally enjoys it. You can find her at: brookshall.blogspot.com.

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13 Responses to “Pelvic Floor Goddess, Leslie Howard Creates Magical Space.”

  1. Candice Garrett Candice says:

    Of course you know I adore Leslie, and Ruby too!

  2. yogiclarebear says:

    good stuff brooks! thanks for the awareness today.

  3. How interesting Brooks!, glad to hear about Leslie, and about Rubby… hee hee… I appreciate your work on bringing awareness to the pelvis floor… Sharath (the main teacher in the Ashtanga Yoga lineage these days) just told us in conference last month that mula bandha should ALWAYS be engaged (or the area between the perineum and the anus always tight) throughout the whole day…and of course during yoga practice. I am still trying to come to grips with that idea…. all day long?! it sure brings awareness to the area too….

    • Candice Garrett Candice says:

      Interesting perspective Claudia. Actually what Leslie teaches has a lot to do with overly hypertonic pelvises, the idea that muscles that are chronically engaged and tight are actually weak and can lead to severe problems and pain, especially for women. I always find it ineresting when it comes up in yoga discussion, because there are so many varying views on it.

  4. Janice Lodato says:

    Thanks for sharing the insights, Brooks!

  5. You writings about getting to know and love the pelvis are wonderful! Thank you!

  6. Brooks Hall Brooks Hall says:

    Thanks for reading and commenting! I enjoy reading your feedback!

  7. Kimberly Johnson kajyoga says:

    Brooks,
    First i am really jealous of Ruby. I want to get one.
    I love your writing about this and the voice of your pelvis.
    I hope to meet Leslie in the near future and I think all women
    yoginis should learn about this work. Our pelvises are where we
    most give our power away, but also the seat of most power. Also
    bandhas themselves are so different in men and in women.
    I have seen a lot of difficulty/tearing in childbirth in women yogis
    because of chronically over tightened pelvic floor muscles. I love
    that you shared this! Another great teacher of this work is http://www.ellenheed.com.

  8. [...] Howard, pelvic floor goddess and yoga teacher who spreads the word nationally, finds that 30% to 40% of women that she sees have [...]

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