Exercising your pelvic floor muscles should be a part of your daily fitness routine, no matter your age. But, did you know that you can make Kegels easier with a Kegel exerciser?
A Kegel exerciser is a device that helps you perform those all important pelvic floor exercises. Simple exercisers offer biofeedback to show when you are squeezing the muscles correctly. Advanced exercisers are an even better alternative, such as an electronic Kegel exerciser. An electronic pelvic floor toner can work those pelvic floor muscles for you - all with the push of a button. An electronic device is a must have for those who cannot correctly contract their pelvic floor muscles, or for those who already have a weak pelvic floor (often characterised by little leaks when they cough or sneeze and/or even a prolapse).
Kegel exercises are the repetitive contraction and relaxation of the pelvic floor muscles, also known as the Kegel muscles. Regular pelvic floor exercises help to improve and maintain the strength of your pelvic floor, in the same way as you workout other parts of your body.
Kegel exercises may not be something you expect to include in your exercise routine, but they should be a focus for everyone. This act of squeezing and relaxing your pelvic floor is vital to keep your pelvic floor muscles strong and supportive. They are even more essential if you workout often, as high impact exercises such as running and lifting weights put an immense pressure on your pelvic floor - leading to the muscles weakening.
But, do Kegels actually work? How do you know if you’re performing them correctly? For how long should you hold your pelvic floor muscle squeeze?
To reap the benefits of Kegel exercises, you must first learn the correct technique.
How Do You Do Kegel Exercises?
You may not be aware of your pelvic floor muscles during your day-to-day activities. They automatically react to pressures such as sneezing and coughing to prevent leaks without you having to think about it. They also help you hold your bladder for longer so you can reach the toilet in time.
You need to practice isolating your pelvic floor muscles in order to exercise them. It’s common for people to squeeze their abdominal, buttock, or leg muscles at the same time - but this reduces the benefits of the exercises and limits the improvements you can make.
To perform a Kegel, you must:
Squeeze the muscles around your anus (as if you're trying to hold in wind)
Tighten your vaginal muscles at the same time
Squeeze and lift both areas as high as you can - without tensing your bottom, legs or stomach muscles
Relax and repeat
Some women have such weak pelvic floor muscles, they are unable to even gently contract them effectively in order to strengthen them. This is common for women who have been pregnant, post-menopausal women and runners. What are the options if this sounds like you?
The Inventor of Kegel Exercises – Dr. Arnold Kegel: