Imagine sitting in one position ALL. Day. Long. …never moving out of that one position.  The seat of the chair pressing against the back of the legs would compress blood vessels and result in pain and numbness.  If you stayed in that one position long enough, the compression of the vascular system would impede blood and lymph flow and lead to varicose veins, edema, discoloration of the feet and even cell death.  Fortunately, your body signals you when it’s time to get up, move around and change positions to avoid discomfort and tissue damage.

A uterus that is displaced and immobile experiences these similar vascular, lymphatic, nervous and cellular disturbances. I’ve personally seen color return to the feet moments after restoring a right leaning uterus back to center.  The incident that stands out in my mind is a client who was eight months pregnant with a right leaning uterus, her left foot looked of normal color, but her right foot was purple.  There was also an obvious temperature difference between the left and right foot, as well as edema of the ankles. Using the gentle uterine positioning techniques was all it took to restore blood flow to her extremities. By the end of the session, the color and temperature of her feet equalized.

One doesn’t need to be pregnant to have an immobile uterus affect surrounding vessels and organs.  The uterus weighs about four ounces when not menstruating and can double in size to eight to ten ounces right before and during your period.  That’s a lot of weight on the surrounding blood and lymph vessels as well as the rectum or bladder, depending on which way the uterus is adhered to the structures.

The uterus must be mobile for proper physiological function.  When the uterus is fixed in one position fibrosis of the ligaments can result and impair local circulation.  When circulation is impaired, the cells won’t get proper nutrients or oxygen and pain will follow.

The uterus must be mobile for proper physiological function. When the uterus is fixed in one position fibrosis of the ligaments can result and impair local circulation. When circulation is impaired, the cells won't get proper… Click To Tweet

When the surrounding structures are so restricted they bind down on the tissues affecting cellular activity.  The organs are the sum total of cells, so what is happening in the cells influences the state of the organs.

Yellow: inferior/superior White: rotational Purple: transverse plane Blue: side bending

A few of the symptoms of an immobile uterus may include:

Contributing factors that may lead to an immobile uterus?

  • sedentary lifestyle
  • inflammation
  • adhesions from surgery
  • poor pelvic alignment
  • adhesions from infection
  • adhesions from trauma

What you can do to keep circulation flowing through the pelvis:

Breathing by expanding the ribcage in a circumference, rather than shallow upper chest breathing mobilizes the uterus. “Although the effect is difficult to quantify, some studies suggest that the “attractive” force of the diaphragm reduces the effective weight of the uterus by approximately 50%,” -Jean-Pierre Barral, D.O.

Massaging a toy uterus

Massage helps improve arterial, venous, and lymph flow. Margo loves her Arvigo massage.

See a Visceral Manipulation Therapist who has completed VM3 or a Certified Arvigo practitioner, and/or take the ATMAT Self-Care class to learn the self-care massage. I have an upcoming class in October 2017!

Walk Your Uterus

Move more and vary your position throughout the day. Take Katy Bowman’s Healthy Pelvis class:


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