Welcome to our Specialist Spotlight Series. We launched our Resource Library because we wanted women everywhere to know that urinary incontinence is a treatable condition, and for them to be able to explore what specialists and treatments might be right for them. In this series, we highlight some of the incredible specialists within our Specialist Directory, and shine a light on the ways they’re helping women every day.
Name, occupation, and where you practice.
Hi! I’m Courtney Virden, Fitness and Pelvic Floor Trainer. I practice in Los Angeles, remotely, and have online programs used by women around the world. My programs are designed for women to be able to help their body heal diastasis recti and pelvic floor dysfunction at home and for a fraction of the price of going to physical therapy or invasive treatments.
If you feel comfortable, feel free to add some context beyond your professional identity.
I am a single mom of two and enjoy surfing, cooking, and spending time with family and friends. I run my own businesses by myself, so each day looks different and most of my work is remote.
Your Purpose and POV
What inspires you to do what you do [professionally] every day, and how did you end up focusing on this profession?
I experienced bladder leakage, sexual dysfunction, diastasis recti, and other issues after my pregnancies and helped myself from home. After focusing on posture and movement before my pregnancies, I knew I needed to now focus more on women’s health and rehab so others could help themselves from home too. I believe all women should have the tools and resources to help themselves feel and look their best and I wanted to be able to share my knowledge with others so they too could heal and feel strong and confident. My online programs are the perfect tool for women to take control of their body and help heal and feel strong. When I get messages from women who are no longer having pelvic floor issues, feeling more confident, and loving my programs, it inspires me to keep going and continually learn more and collaborate so I can help in more ways.
What POV do you bring to your profession?
I think so many women are embarrassed to talk about some of the more common issues women can experience and I talk openly about it. Fascial movement therapy can fix so many things going on with our bodies, including pelvic floor dysfunction. My programs and exercises are highly specialized and correct muscular imbalances and help realign fascia. My exercises are sequenced and quite different from most traditional pelvic floor exercises and that is what makes them so powerful and fun.
For almost 20 years I have had people come see me for various rehab issues and I have a unique way of looking at the body. I can watch someone stand and walk and see where their body is breaking down and know how to structure workouts to fix faulty biomechanics. My online programs are structured in a specific way to help everyone get results. I write for Kourtney Kardashian’s lifestyle blog, Poosh, and several other publications, about women’s pelvic floor and other health and wellness topics. Our health is a combination of physical, mental, and emotional health and I share some of my life not related to fitness and my journey to help educate and inspire others.
What do you find resonates best/most with your audience?
My audience likes that I am relatable and real. I don’t post filtered videos or pretend to be someone I am not. I have shared some very personal struggles because I think with social media sometimes you only see the highlights and that isn’t real life. I have obstacles and deal with struggles just like we all do, including the pelvic floor dysfunction I had and a very messy divorce.
When it comes to women’s health (and your specialty), where is there still “work to do”?
Getting women to openly discuss pelvic floor health is something that needs to be done. There have been tremendous strides but women need to realize our bodies are beautiful and amazing and it is ok to share when you have an issue. No need to hold back or be shy. That is how you will find help and help others in the process sometimes.
Any myths to dispel? Misperceptions about treatments? Attitudes to change?
Yes! Bladder/bowel leakage, prolapse, and other pelvic floor issues are common but not normal. It is not normal to pee yourself, have your uterus falling out, and more. Also, I am not a fan of Kegels and for so many women they can make pelvic floor issues worse! My programs focus on eccentric and concentric contractions so you lengthen the tissues but build strength at the same time. Think strong, toned and responsive for your pelvic floor. Not tight! Don’t look for a band-aid approach that doesn’t fix the underlying issues. I always recommend trying the most holistic treatments available to actually treat what is going on and if those don’t work then move on to a more invasive treatment. Usually when you are trying to fix an issue with your body, a quick fix doesn’t work.
What advice would you give to women reading this when it comes to taking charge of their health/wellness?
Start now! Health starts on the inside and when you treat your body well and it works well, you feel strong and confident in all areas of life. The longer you neglect your health the harder and longer it can take to get it back or get it in the first place.
What’s the biggest “lesson learned” (personally or professionally) to come from living through a pandemic?
Be flexible and creative. My two kids were doing remote learning, one for almost a year. I had to get creative with my schedule since I am a single mom and don’t have family around. If you are too rigid with many things, life can be more difficult.
Anything else to share?
My mission is to help educate and empower women to be able to take control of their health and life and by doing so be the best version of themselves in all areas. All women deserve to feel incredible and have inner confidence. Besides women eliminating issues that they are having with their pelvic floor and body, my favorite thing about my programs is the inner confidence and acceptance women get from doing them. That is priceless and to watch women develop that level of self-love has me wanting all women to experience it. When you feel great about yourself you show up differently in the world and that is powerful.
You can also take 10% off Courtney's classes at https://courtneyv.com/programs/ with the code 'ATTNGRACE'.
Learn More About Urinary Incontinence: