What Can Female Athletes Do About Incontinence?

What Can Female Athletes Do About Incontinence?

Olympic inspiration

As the mother of a retired Olympian, I am always extra-inspired by the Olympics and Paralympics. Over many years of watching our athletes overcome injuries and difficult circumstances to achieve their personal best, I have lost count of the many tears of joy and sadness shed for each one of our Canadian “kids”.

Injuries and setbacks are seen very publicly while others will be – well – invisible. Fortunately, the worst of them are usually well kept secrets…for the most part.

My heart still goes out to the female weightlifter from Ecuador who once leaked urine onto the floor during a lift with millions of people watching. Not to mention the thousands who can still find it on YouTube.

I guarantee she was not the only elite female athlete who leaked during an event. It is a very common problem in high level (and garden-variety) female athletes.

Garden variety athletes

Even elite athletes have to deal with bladder leakage

A 2002 research study surveyed 291 elite female athletes competing in a variety of sports, from basketball to ballet, about their history of urine loss during participation in their sport or day to day activities. 151 reported leakage of some kind. While I am lousy at math – even I know that’s HALF of the female athletes!

The story really doesn’t stop there. While these top level athletes are extra strong and healthy – what about us child-bearing, weight-bearing, aging-bearing gals who still like to hop down the lane for a long walk, join a good game of tennis or play a simple 18 holes of golf?

The answers are much the same. Over time, whether it is the repeated impact from committed running, resistance training, the effects of pregnancy, or some extra pounds – the pelvic floor is vulnerable.

We regularly speak with women who find themselves surprised by unexpected leaks - like the woman with a two year old said that she was horrified that she now had embarrassing moments at yoga class. And one of the fittest women I have ever seen over the age of 40 told of how she learned an lesson while trampolining in the backyard with her kids.

Exercises and recommended products for women dealing with a loss of bladder control 

The good news is that there is lots of self-help and professional help available for pelvic floor disorders for Olympians and us mere mortals. Check out this terrific handout on Kegel Exercises for Women from Toronto’s University Health Network.

In the meantime, if you have Olympian-sized worries about bladder leaks – check out our Women’s Collection or our sports solutions for women collection today.

Panty Liners and Pads for Women

Technology has come a long way in reducing bulk while working hard to prevent unpleasant odours. We calls it life changing leak protection.

 Women's Pad


Guards, Liners and Pads for Men

And men - fear not; we've done the same for you - if you're dealing with bladder leakage issues, see our men's sports collection or our Prostate Care collection.


Men's Guard, Liners

Please don't give up on your favourite sports

We hope you'll consider these discreet products so that you can keep doing all those activities you love - running, boxing, trampolining - whatever grabs your fancy, we've got you covered, Canada!

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  • Cindy Clegg
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