Kegel… Weird Flex, but Okay!

We all have parts of our body we want to work on, areas we wished were a bit more toned, but a busy life can get in the way of scheduling time to exercise. Unlike traditional exercise routines, the Kegel is one powerful flex that you can causally perform while sitting at a red light, while talking to your grandmother on the phone, or even at your desk while performing your daily job duties. It is discrete and if you have or want to prevent a weak pelvic floor, Kegels are the answer.

Muscles become stronger the more you exercise them and the same is true for your pelvic floor muscles. It is never too late to start Kegels. Building up your pelvic floor strength after the muscles have been weakened can help improve bladder leakage, comfortable bathroom usage, and vaginal/tailbone pain. Keep reading to learn more about Kegels and your pelvic floor.

Pelvic Floor Muscles

Pelvic floor muscles are shaped like a bowl or hammock and sit between your tailbone and pubic bone and side to side between your sitz bones. These muscles support internal organs by keeping them held up against gravity, aid in sexual activity and pleasure for women, and support continence. Pelvic floor muscles can be weakened by pregnancy, childbirth, surgery, and age. Weakened pelvic floor muscles can lead to urinary and fecal incontinence, and other pelvic floor issues.

What are Kegels?

Kegels are quick little exercises that have a huge impact on your pelvic floor muscles. Practicing Kegels regularly can help build strength within the pelvic floor. Anyone can practice Kegels to strengthen the pelvic floor muscles. A bonus… this is an exercise that you can perform at just about any time and do not need any additional equipment.

How do I do them?

To do a Kegel first identify where your pelvic floor muscles are. To find the right muscles, you can practice by stopping the flow of urine, though you do not want to do this often as it can increase your risk of a UTI. To perform a Kegel imagine sitting on a marble, drawing it up, and then relaxing. You can practice a Kegel for three seconds at a time, then relax for three seconds. Make sure you are not relying on other muscle groups while tightening or holding your breath.

How often should I do them?

Once you feel comfortable doing a Kegel you can begin to incorporate Kegels daily. Start by doing 5 Kegels once a day, then gradually work your way up to 10-15 Kegels three times a day.