Exercise benefits always outweigh risks for virtually everyone. But the right type of exercise depending on what your personal health concerns are, is always critical. We advocate involving your PCP in these decisions.
Very heavy and repetitive lifting can affect pelvic floor health in some women. In a study printed in the American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology July 2015 edition researchers from the University of Utah School of Medicine looked at the amount of life time of physical activity and whether activity labeled strenuous would affect a woman's chance of have stress urinary incontinence, or leaking urine with provoked activity.
There was mostly no affect on the level of physical activity and whether a middle-aged woman would have stress incontinence.
In teen years very strenuous physical activity may affect in a small way lifetime risk of incontinence, but the data has not been confirmed in that group.
Things we do know that have been proven to affect the rate of stress incontinence include your genetics, birthing, smoking, obesity, straining with bowel movements, hormone levels, and poor nutrition.
Another reason to normalize your BMI and get healthy! Often pelvic floor conditions such as the dropped bladder or other disorders will precede the SUI, and that has to be diagnosed by a physician.
Eventually if you have urine leakage with stress, you should know that there are many treatments and new ones coming. Electroacupuncture for stress urinary incontinence in women (August 2017 in UpToDate was the newest treatment for options for stress urinary incontinence (SUI) in women including lifestyle modifications, MonaLisa Touch, ThermiVa, bladder training, medications, devices, PRP, hysterectomy and other surgery. Availability of effective acupuncture therapy in your area may limit your choice of this option, but we are intrigued to hear more!