Kegel exercises for women are those exercises that bolster your pelvic floor muscles. These exercises are also known as pelvic floor exercises for women. They strengthen the muscles that support your uterus, bladder, small intestine, and rectum. Kegels for women not only keep them fit but also help them avoid bladder leaks and passing gas or stool by accident. Kegels even improve your orgasms.
Benefits Of Kegel or Pelvic Exercises for Women
Your pelvic floor muscle may get weakened due to several factors, including pregnancy, childbirth, surgery, aging, extreme straining from constipation or prolonged coughing, and obesity.
By performing Kegel exercises, you can get benefited in many ways.
- Kegel exercises are useful for women who are suffering from urine leakage (a few drops of urine) while sneezing, laughing, or coughing
- Many women often feel to urinate (urge to urinate) just before losing a large amount of urine (urinary urge incontinence)
- Leak stool (fecal incontinence)
- Kegel exercises are beneficial even in pregnancy or after childbirth to improve your symptoms.
Kegel exercises are not only beneficial for women but also fortify men’s pelvic floor muscles. These muscles improve your bladder and bowel function and affect sexual function. Kegels are useful if you are suffering from bladder or bowel incontinence, or if you drip after you pee. Kegels can improve your sex by giving you a more pleasurable feeling during orgasm.
Kegel exercises are less effective for women who have uncontrolled urine leakage when they sneeze, cough, or laugh. Kegel exercise may not be beneficial for women who surprisingly leak small amounts of urine due to a full bladder (overflow incontinence).
How To Do Kegel Exercises
- Find out the right muscles: First, you need to identify your pelvic floor muscles and then, stop urination in midstream. Once you have recognized the right floor muscle, you can practice this exercise in any position. Initially, by lying down, you can comfortably perform these exercises.
- Perfect your Technique: To perform Kegel exercises for women, you need to imagine sitting on a marble and then, tautening your pelvic muscles as if you are lifting the marble. Try to hold it for 3 sec and then relax for a count of three.
- Maintain your Focus: To achieve the best results from pelvic floor exercises for women, focus only on tightening your pelvic floor muscles. Don’t relax your muscles in the abdomen, thighs, or buttocks. Instead of holding your breath, try to breathe freely during the exercises.
Repeat this exercise three times a day.
Don’t use this Kegel exercise to start and stop your urine stream. If you perform the Kegel exercise at the time of urination, it may not empty your bladder completely. Incomplete emptying of the bladder may enhance the risk of a urinary tract infection.
Get in touch with your gynecologist if you can’t identify the right pelvic muscles. They may recommend using a vaginal cone to find out the right muscles. You need to insert this vaginal cone into the vagina and then, by using pelvic floor muscle, you can keep it in place.
Biofeedback training is also beneficial to identify and isolate your pelvic floor muscles. Under this procedure, a doctor will insert a small probe into your vagina or put adhesive electrodes on the outside of your vagina or anus. Then, you need to perform a Kegel. A monitor will display whether you constricted the right muscles and how long you can hold the contraction.
Kegels are safe, but it’s still important to be careful. Here’s what to watch out for:
- Never do Kegels while Peeing: Don’t tighten your muscle (trying to stop peeing) while peeing. This will enhance your chance of getting a urinary tract infection (UTI)
- Don’t Overdo it: This can lead to straining when you use the bathroom.
- Exercise Regularly: Like other exercises, you need to perform Kegels every day to get stronger. You need to practice this exercise every day for at least 15 weeks. If there is any change to your routine, talk to the doctor.
Finding the Pelvic Floor Muscles in Men
- In some cases, men also face difficulties in identifying the correct pelvic floor muscles. By inserting a finger into the rectum and squeezing it, men can find pelvic muscles without tightening the muscles of the abdomen, buttocks, or thighs.
- Another beneficial way is to tense the muscles that help you in passing gas.
- If you still have difficulties, practice stopping the flow of urine. As women, this is an efficient way to locate the pelvic floor muscles. But don’t practice this habit regularly.
- Biofeedback is another useful trick that helps men in identifying the pelvic floor muscles. If you can’t locate the muscles yourself, you can consult a doctor who will help you in finding the right pelvic muscles.
Before practicing the Kegel exercise, always empty your bladder. As a beginner, you need to find a quiet and secluded place to sit or to lie down before starting kegel exercise. After some days, you can perform this exercise anywhere with your practice.
If you experience pain in your abdomen or back after practicing pelvic exercises for women, this indicates that you are not doing them properly. Though you need to contract your pelvic floor muscles to practice this exercise, the muscles in your abdomen, back, buttocks, and sides should remain slack.
Most importantly, don’t over practice Kegels for women. If you tighten the muscles too hard, they will become exhausted and can’t perform their relevant functions.