What are Kegel exercises and what can they do for you? For women, Kegel exercises serve to enhance the pelvic floor muscles. The pelvic floor muscles support the uterus, bladder and bowel. Kegel exercises can be done anytime. You can do them while you’re driving, sitting at your desk at work, or just chilling on the couch. Read on to see how Kegel exercises are done and why you should do them.
Pelvic Floor Muscles
A woman’s pelvic floor muscles can weaken as a result of pregnancy, childbirth, aging and being overweight. Weakened pelvic floor muscles may let your pelvic organs shift lower and swell onto your vagina. This condition is called pelvic organ prolapse. Its effects can vary. Women with pelvic organ prolapse may feel uncomfortable pelvic pressure. Or their urine might even leak out. One good way to prevent pelvic organ prolapse and the symptoms that come with it is to do Kegel exercises. In addition, many women who have a hard time reaching orgasm also find that doing Kegel exercises helps them.
Finding Oelvic Floor Muscles
In order to do Kegel exercises, you’ll first have to find your pelvic floor muscles. Put a finger inside your vagina and then see if you can squeeze the muscles that surround it. If you’re doing it correctly, you should feel a tightening in your vagina muscles. Your pelvic floor should also move upward. Next, relax you muscles and feel your pelvic floor return to where it was. Another way to determine where your pelvic floor muscles are is to try to stop the urine from coming out when you’re urinating. The muscles that you use to do this are your pelvic floor muscles. What you’re doing is the basic Kegel exercise. However, don’t stop the flow of urine too often. If you do Kegel exercises when your bladder is full or while you’re urinating, you can even weaken your pelvic floor muscles. Doing Kegel exercises while urinating can also result in an incomplete emptying of the balder. Doing this will heighten the chance that you’ll get a urinary tract infection.
First, make sure that your bladder is empty. Next, sit or lie down. Then contract your pelvic floor muscles. Hold this for five seconds, then relax for five seconds. Do this four or five times in a row. Eventually, you should be able to work your way up to keeping your pelvic floor contracted for up to ten seconds at a time. Relax for ten seconds in between each contraction.
Try to tighten only your pelvic floor muscles. Avoid flexing the muscles in your stomach, thighs or butt. Don’t hold your breath. Make sure that you breathe normally while you’re doing Kegel exercises.
Do Kegel exercises at least three times a day. Try to do three sets of 10 exercises each. You can make time for Kegel exercises if you do it while you’re on your daily commute, checking email or watching television.
Kegel exercises are a quick and easy way to strengthen your pelvic floor muscles.