If you start researching Pelvic Organ Prolapse (POP), one fact you will learn is that it is common. It affects about 50 percent of all women and about 30 percent of female athletes.
Nearly one in two women are affected by POP – maybe your mother, sister, wife, partner, daughter. Yet most of us get caught by surprise when it happens because we have never heard of it before!
To start talking about POP and raise awareness, we sought stories from active women around New Zealand who have experienced a prolapse. ‘Active’ refers to any activity – walking, biking, gym, running, tramping, skiing etc.
The outdoor sector was supportive (NZ Adventure, Walking NZ, Federated Mountain Clubs, AUS Wild, NZ Alpine Club, Windsurfing NZ). Thanks to the proactive editors and organisations, pelvic physios, pelvic floor safe fitness instructors and Pilates teachers who helped publicise the information about the POP project.
Of thirty New Zealand newspaper editors we contacted, only one replied. She commented that most editors were male and that POP ‘was not exactly a sexy topic!’