HomeChampion's TrainingFitness Secrets & TipsUnlock Your Pelvic Power: The Ultimate Guide to Kegel Exercises
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Unlock Your Pelvic Power: The Ultimate Guide to Kegel Exercises

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If you experience urinary leaks when sneezing, laughing, or coughing, rest assured, you’re among many who face similar issues. Pelvic floor problems are widespread and can affect individuals from all walks of life. Certainly! One effective solution lies in incorporating specific exercises, termed pelvic floor muscle training popularly called Kegel exercises, into your daily fitness routine. These kegel workouts are tailored to fortify your pelvic floor muscles and have been shown to diminish the severity of symptoms associated with pelvic organ prolapse.

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What are Kegel exercises?

Kegel exercises, named after Dr. Arnold Kegel, are a set of pelvic floor exercises designed to strengthen the muscles supporting the bladder, uterus, and bowels. These exercises involve contracting and relaxing the pelvic floor muscles and are commonly recommended to improve bladder control, support during pregnancy, and enhance sexual satisfaction. Simple yet effective, Kegel exercises can be easily incorporated into daily routines and offer numerous benefits for both men and women.

Benefits of Kegel Exercises / Workout

Kegel exercises offer a multitude of benefits that contribute to overall pelvic floor health and well-being. Some of the key advantages include:

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Your Guide to Kegel and Other Pelvic Floor Exercises - Pratisandhi

Improved Bladder Control

Strengthening the pelvic floor muscles can help reduce urinary incontinence by enhancing control over bladder function. This benefit is particularly significant for individuals experiencing stress urinary incontinence or urge incontinence.

Support for Pelvic Organs

Strong pelvic floor muscles provide support for pelvic organs such as the bladder, uterus, and rectum. This support can help prevent or alleviate symptoms of pelvic organ prolapse, where these organs drop from their normal position.

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Enhanced Sexual Function

Strengthening the pelvic floor can improve sensations during sexual activity and may lead to increased sexual satisfaction for both men and women. Additionally, improved muscle control can contribute to better orgasm intensity and control.


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Preparation and Recovery from Childbirth

Performing Kegel exercises during pregnancy can help prepare the pelvic floor muscles for the demands of childbirth. After delivery, continuing these exercises aids in the recovery of pelvic muscle tone and control.

Management of Erectile Dysfunction

For men, Kegel exercises can assist in managing erectile dysfunction by improving blood flow to the pelvic region and enhancing muscle control around the penis.

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Promotion of General Well-being

Strengthening the pelvic floor muscles contributes to overall core stability, posture improvement, and better body alignment. It can also reduce the risk of lower back pain and injury.

Preventive Care

Regularly practicing Kegel exercises can serve as a preventive measure against pelvic floor issues, especially for individuals at risk due to ageing, obesity, chronic constipation, or occupations that involve heavy lifting.

These exercises are versatile, convenient, and can be discreetly incorporated into daily routines, making them accessible to individuals seeking to improve pelvic floor health regardless of age or gender. Regular and proper practice, along with guidance from healthcare professionals, maximizes the benefits of Kegel exercises and supports long-term pelvic floor health.

Exercises to strengthen your pelvic floor muscles 

Quick Flick Kegels 

The quick flick Kegel exercise involves rapid contractions of the pelvic floor muscles to swiftly activate them, aiding in preventing leaks during sneezing or coughing.

  1. Start by lying down with bent knees and feet flat on the floor. As you progress, attempt this exercise while sitting or standing.
  2. Identify your pelvic floor muscles using the aforementioned tips.
  3. Exhale, engage your core by pulling your navel towards your spine, and swiftly contract and release your pelvic floor muscles, aiming for a 1-second contraction.
  4. Maintain a consistent breathing pattern throughout.
  5. Perform 10 repetitions of the quick flick, followed by a 10-second rest. Aim for 2–3 sets of this routine.

Happy Baby Pose 

The Happy Baby Pose serves as an excellent addition to a pelvic floor routine, focusing on stretching and releasing.

  1. Start by lying down with your knees bent.
  2. Draw your knees toward your belly, creating a 90-degree angle, and position the soles of your feet facing upward.
  3. Grasp either the outside or inside of your feet.
  4. Open your knees slightly wider than your torso while bringing your feet towards your armpits, ensuring your ankles align over your knees.
  5. Flex your heels and press your feet into your hands. Hold this pose for a few breaths or gently sway from side to side for added relaxation.

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Marches (also known as toe taps)

Similar to heel slides, marches are exercises that aid in enhancing core stability and promoting pelvic floor contractions.

  1. Start by lying on your back with bent knees and maintain a neutral pelvis position.
  2. Inhale deeply into your rib cage, then exhale gently, allowing your ribs to naturally contract.
  3. Engage your pelvic floor muscles and activate your core.
  4. Gradually raise one leg to a tabletop position.
  5. Slowly lower that leg back to the initial position.
  6. Repeat this movement by alternating legs. Ensure there’s no discomfort in your lower back, and sustain engagement in your deep core muscles throughout the exercise.
  7. Perform 12–20 repetitions, alternating legs to complete the set.

Heel Slides 

Heel slides are effective for engaging the pelvic floor muscles while specifically targeting the deep abdominal muscles.

  1. Start by lying on your back with bent knees, ensuring your pelvis maintains a neutral position.
  2. Inhale deeply into your rib cage, then exhale, allowing your ribs to gently contract.
  3. Engage your pelvic floor and core muscles, then slide your right heel away from your body. Maintain the connection to your deep core without overextending.
  4. Reach the comfortable limit, then inhale while returning your leg to the starting position.
  5. Repeat this movement.
  6. Complete 10 slides with each leg, sliding up and back, before switching to the other leg for the same number of repetitions.

Side Hip Raise

The side hip raise is a moderately advanced exercise, ideal once you’ve mastered the previous movements.

  1. Start by lying on your side with bent legs and support your upper body with your elbow.
  2. Engage your oblique muscles to gently lift your hips off the floor, ensuring your body forms a straight line from the top of your head to your top knee.
  3. Simultaneously, activate your glutes and pelvic floor to raise your top knee upward and move your hips forward.
  4. Maintain the lifted position, keeping your hips off the floor, and hold briefly. Lower your knee and hips to return to the initial position.
  5. Perform 8-10 repetitions on each side.

Conclusion

Kegel exercises offer a valuable and accessible means to strengthen the pelvic floor muscles. These exercises, aimed at improving bladder control, supporting pelvic organs, and enhancing sexual satisfaction, can significantly benefit individuals experiencing issues like urinary incontinence or pelvic organ prolapse. By incorporating various techniques such as quick flick Kegels, Happy Baby Pose, marches, heel slides, and side hip raises, individuals can effectively target and strengthen the pelvic floor muscles. Consistency and proper technique are key in reaping the long-term benefits of Kegel exercises, ultimately promoting better pelvic health and overall well-being. Seeking guidance from healthcare professionals for personalized advice and monitoring is advisable, ensuring optimal outcomes and tailored management for specific pelvic floor concerns.


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