In addition to being the sexiest exercises out there, Kegel or Pelvic Floor exercises treat a wide variety of problems associated with a weak pelvic floor. Some of these problems include urinary incontinence, erectile dysfunction, premature ejaculation, vaginal, uterine and anal prolapse and difficulty achieving orgasm in women. The pelvic floor muscles are made up of the coccygeus and levator ani muscles, with the levator ani being divided further into pubococcygeus, puborectalis and iliococcygeus muscles. While it may be hard to remember the names of these muscles, how to engage them is actually quite easy. In essence, you could think of them as the “I don’t want to go pee now” muscles.
The best part of these exercises is that they can be done anywhere, with no one being the wiser that you are doing them. If done regularly, they will strengthen the pelvic floor and help women to prepare for the stresses associated with child birth, as well as aiding in recovery afterwards. They will also help with recovery from urinary incontinence associated with prolapse, prostate pain and swelling (also known as BPH), and best of all greater enjoyment of sex, due to the greater control of these muscles that the exercise enables.
To engage them, just squeeze the sphincter tight and draw slightly upwards for a count of three seconds. Do this 10 times. Then, on the last repetition, make the 3s count into a 30s count. Do this 2-3 times per day. If you do them regularly, for at least 8-12 weeks, some very happy outcomes will follow.
Stay tuned next week where we’ll talk about acupressure to relieve headaches.
Be Well and Be Zen
Grace Dorey, Mark J. Speakman, Roger C.L. Feneley, Annette Swinkels, Christopher D.R. Dunn., (Aug 11, 2005), Pelvic floor exercises for erectile dysfunction. BJUI., DOI: 10.1111/j.1464-410X.2005.05690.x
La Pera, G; Nicastro, A (1996). “A new treatment for premature ejaculation: the rehabilitation of the pelvic floor”. Journal of sex & marital therapy 22 (1): 22–6. doi:10.1080/00926239608405302. PMID 8699493.