This seminar is designed to understand the development of the diaphragm and pelvic floor muscles (PFM) as it relates to core function and continence in children. Special needs children or those with musculoskeletal asymmetries frequently have a weak core, postural compensations and develop poor bowel and bladder habits.

Did you ever consider activating a child’s pelvic floor musculature in order to increase their core strength and control, and improve their functional ability?

Are you able to define what correct core activation is? Learn how to connect the ribcage, the diaphragm and the pelvic floor for proper core activation.

This seminar includes instruction in anatomy and development of the diaphragm and its relationship to the pelvic floor/core.

Focus on assessment and treatment of the core/breathing and the PFM in a school-based setting will be provided. This includes how to identify constipation and/or dysfunctional voiding habits and understanding how managing constipation can improve posture core control and breathing.

The information presented in the course applies to children who have been diagnosed with Cerebral Palsy, Downs Syndrome, ASD, Hypotonia and more.


  1. 1. Constipation in Children. (2013). Retrieved June 9, 20142. Robin SG, Keller C, Zwiener R, et al. Prevalence of Pediatric Functional Gastrointestinal Disorders Utilizing the Rome IV Criteria. J Pediatr 2018; 195:134.

    3. Thibodeau, B. A., Metcalfe, P., Koop, P., & Moore, K. (2013). Urinary incontinence and quality of life in children. Journal of pediatric urology, 9(1), 78-83.

The Pelvic Floor, the Diaphragm, the Core and their Role in Postural Development in Children

  • 30 min Anatomy of the Pelvic Floor Muscles (PFM)
  • 45 min Define the Core-The pelvic floor, diaphragm, the abdominal wall. The development of the PFM and its relationship reactionary and anticipatory core with postural development
  • 30 min Constipation -constipation screening and treatment of the core as it relates to constipation limiting the ability of the core to activate correctly for other functional tasks
  • 15 min- Q&A
  • 30 min PFM visual screen with verbal cues and positioning for successful PFM activation
  • 15 min Diastasis Rectus Abdominus assessment;
  • 30 min Breathing Assessment belly breathing assessment and treatment
  • 15 min Ribcage assessment for proper diaphragm function
  • 60 min- Connecting the ribcage, the diaphragm and pelvic floor for proper core activation
  • 60 min Patient examples and treatment progressions
  • 15 min Q&A

* Times are subject to change based on class size and participation

Course Objectives

  • Understand the function of the pelvic floor muscles and how the position of the diaphragm and rib cage plays an integral role in managing the pressure system for core stability
  • Understand that constipation and diastasis rectus abdominus among other musculoskeletal issues can cause a pressure problem in affecting core stability

  • Apply the concepts of diaphragm and pelvic floor position to assist in activation of the core musculature

  • Analyze the ribcage and breathing mechanics to understand how the position of the ribs play a role in pressure in the abdomen and alter core activation

  • Assess breathing patterns and retrain the breath to support the ribs and pelvic floor

  • Create a home program for special needs children as well as neurotypical peers to address weak core muscles related to dysfunctional diaphragm, ribcage and pelvic floor function

A total of 8 hours involves evaluative procedures to treat a person without a referral.

Every journey starts with the first step.