Basic Kegel Exercise for women - Simplified
What are Kegel Exercises?
Kegel exercise are a form of pelvic muscle exercise that strengthen the pelvic muscles which support the uterus, bladder and vagina.
Kegel exercises were originally devised by Dr. Arnold Kegel in 1948 to prevent urinary incontinence in postpartum women and they are one of the safest ways to treat Urinary incontinency in both women and men without side effects and complications. It helps by reinforcing weakened pelvic floor muscles or “kegel muscles” and improving elasticity.
What is the need for Kegel Exercise?
With the process of ageing the pelvic muscles become weak. This lack of support leads to loosening of the vagina, sagging of the bladder walls or descent of the uterus into the vagina. The woman will experience less friction and pleasure during sex, may leak urine involuntarily or even suffer from repeated urine infection because of the urinary bladder not being able to void the urine completely. Some women complain of something coming down the vagina which is nothing but the uterus coming down because of weak pelvic muscles.
Is ageing the only reason for weak pelvic floor muscles?
- Age is the single most important criteria for weak pelvic muscles.
- Menopause further weaken the muscles.
- Normal vaginal delivery increases the risk by 3 times!!!
- Forceps delivery increases the risk 20 times!!!!
- The number of children delivered vaginally also influence the risk.
How to identify the pelvic floor muscles?
You can identify the pelvic muscles by stopping the urine stream midway. However this must be done ONLY to identify the muscles and one must not hold urine midway as part of the exercise.
Additionally one can put a finger or two in the vagina and squeeze the muscles around it. This would give you an idea about the muscles.
Basic Kegel Exercise
ALWAYS empty the bladder before doing the exercise. While lying supine on the floor, try and squeeze the muscles and hold to a count of 10 and then release. This way do another 2 sets. Try doing this 3 times a day (total 9 times a day). You can place one hand on your belly to ensure than you are keeping your belly muscles relaxed. In case your belly muscles hurt after the exercise, it would mean you are engaging the wrong muscles.
Advanced Kegel Workout:
Some work out positions that have the same effect as Kegel exercise on strengthening pelvic floor muscles:
Lastly don’t expect results overnight. It takes weeks to perfect the technique and months before you can see results. Patience is the key to success here.
Benefits of Kegel exercises for women
- Helps strengthen kegel muscles (pelvic floor muscles) and there by helps in bladder control in women with Urinary incontinence
- Doctors also advise Kegel exercise for Vaginismus to help women who experience pain during intercourse.