One Easy Exercise for a Healthy Pyramidalis Muscle

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You probably didn’t know you had a pyramidalis muscle until it quit working correctly. Here’s the one easy exercise you need to fix this important muscle and feel better.

As a kid, I’d say I didn’t spend any time considering the muscles in my pelvic floor. No, I can say with certainty that I didn’t think of them once.

However, when I started learning how to teach Pilates, it seemed to be all my teacher could talk about. Every single exercise we did started with Exhale and lift the pelvic floor. And then all of a sudden one class, all the pelvic floor talk came to a screeching halt.

Studies showed that whenever people talked about and were encouraged to engage the pelvic floor, they were more likely to seriously injure themselves.

By actively trying to engage the pyramidalis muscle, you can rip or tear it. In some extreme cases, people accidentally ripped their pyramidalis right off of their pubic bone. How horrifying and painful!

I share all of this to let you know, building your pyramidalis muscle isn’t like regular muscle building. When you’re doing work on your pelvic floor, you want to make sure you’re completely paying attention to what you’re doing. Also, you never ever, ever want to try to grip or pull on your pyramidalis with 100% strength. Instead, aim for about 60% effort.

Below, you’ll learn the best way to strengthen the pyramidalis muscle. Just make sure you’re relaxed and nonchalant when you do it.

If you’ve got pelvic pain that you’re trying to relieve, download your copy of The Secret to Immediate + Lasting Pain Relief today! Click here to get your free copy right now.

Where Is the Pyramidalis?

The pyramidalis is a small, supportive muscle that helps keep your pubic bone and several core muscles working properly. Although you may not realize it’s there, you might become very aware of this muscle if your pubic bone is not in correct alignment or if you have an adductor injury.

Thanks to for the pyramidalis image.

The origin of the pyramidalis is on the anterior edge of the pubic symphisis and the pubic bone. So, basically, this muscle begins right in the center of your body where your pubic bones come together.

The insertion of the pyramidalis is on the linea alba about halfway between your belly button (umbilicus) and your pubis. The line alba is the fibrous material that runs down the middle of your body, from just below your sternum (breastbone) on your xiphoid process to your pubic symphisis. The linea alba is that vertical line that makes your rectus abdominis look like a 6-pack instead of a 3-pack.

What Does the Pyramidalis Do?

According to Flash Anatomy Muscle Flash Cards, the pyramidalis “compresses the abdomen, supports abdominal viscera, tenses the linea alba and is active in forced expiration.” Basically, this means that it works as a supportive muscle, particularly for the muscles and structure of the abdomen.

What Happens When the Pyramidalis Doesn’t Work Correctly?

When the pyramidalis is dysfunctional and doesn’t work like it should, it can pull on the pubic symphisis and pubic bone. According to, this can cause pelvic floor dysfunction, which impacts both males and females.

This often happens when people try to over-engage muscles in the pelvic floor. Pelvic floor dysfunction is known to be a cause of incontinence and constipation.

However, improperly aligned pubic bones can also cause general pelvic pain and instability. This imbalance at the front of your pelvis could be a potential cause for pain anywhere in your hips, not just in the front.

Also, a recent study indicates that there may also be a correlation between pyramidalis and adductor longus dysfunction. Because these two muscles both connect on the pubic crest, dysfunction in one may cause dysfunction in the other.

What Can You Do to Fix Your Pyramidalis Muscle?

First of all, if you believe you have injured your pyramidalis muscle, you should contact your doctor. He or she can order all of the appropriate imaging, medicine, and therapy that you’ll need to heal. Then, once you’re given the all-clear to exercise, try this.

An Easy Exercise for a Healthy Pyramidalis Muscle

You should be able to keep this supportive muscle healthy by actively practicing the Pilates style of breathing.

Pro Tip: Make sure you’re not too forceful in your exhales. Also, avoid gripping your pelvic floor muscles. Think of it this way:  If you grip, you rip. No one wants a ripped pelvic floor muscle, so make sure that you’re giving your exhales about 60% effort.

picture of Sarah Stockett practicing pilates breathing
  1. Take a comfortable seat. Feel your SITs bones (those bones you feel on your bottom when you’re sitting) press down into whatever you’re sitting on.
  2. Place your hands around the bottom of your ribs so your thumbs are pointing toward your spine and your fingers point toward your belly. Feel your bottom ribs. You want to have your bottom ribs angled so they point straight down at your hips and pelvis. (Sometimes, the ribs will angle forward like they’re aiming for your lap. This is especially true for folks with low back pain. If this sounds like you, try to engage your abdominal muscles to angle your rib cage straight down to your hips.)
  3. Breathe in through your nose and notice how your rib cage fills up. You want to feel your bottom ribs move when you breathe. This way, you know you’re breathing deep enough. You also want to feel your ribs open to the front, expand to the sides, and even expand to the back. (Because of the spine, there’s less opportunity for movement in the back of the rib cage, but there should still be some.)
  4. Envision a midpoint in your abdomen that is totally centered top to bottom, front to back, and left to right.
  5. Exhale through pursed lips like you’re blowing out candles. Feel all the muscles between your ribs and hips gently hug toward this central spot. (Make sure to avoid any sort of squeezing or gripping feelings.)
  6. Keep breathing.

More Information

For those who are more interested in technical terminology and smaller muscles, I recommend Flash Anatomy Muscles Flash Cards. Any time a client comes to me with pain, I use these flash cards. (I earn a small commission when you order from this link at no extra charge to you.)

Thanks to for the use of their pyramidalis image. Kenhub is a wonderful online anatomy resource. Check out their website if you want to see more information about the pyramidalis muscle.

If you’ve got pelvic pain that you’re trying to relieve, download your copy of The Secret to Immediate + Lasting Pain Relief today! Click here to get your free copy right now.

About Sarah Stockett

Hi, I'm Sarah! I'm a certified Pilates and yoga instructor with a passion for pain relief. I believe you can use simple exercises to relieve your aches + pains. AND, I believe I can teach you how.