What is the kegel exercise? Kegel exercise is an exercise of muscles which involves a repetitive act of contracting and relaxation of the muscles. It is also known as pelvic floor exercise.
Kegel exercises can be done by both men and women and can increase the strength of the pelvic floor and may improve or even eliminate bladder leakage.
What is a kegel exercise?
Kegel exercises strengthen the muscles that support the abdominal, bladder, uterus, and bowels. Kegel exercises also help support the vaginal muscles. Kegel exercise is one of the best ways to maintain and improve bowel and bladder functions.
Why Should You Do Kegel Exercises?
During pregnancy, women face many problems, weakening of muscles is one of them. The pelvic floor muscles can become loose and weak especially at the time of labor and delivery. Kegel exercise can prevent and improve the pelvic muscles from damage hence improves the bladder and bowel conditions.
Benefits of Kegel Exercises During Pregnancy
- During pregnancy, women who do Kegel exercises find they give easier birth. For pregnant women, strengthening vaginal muscles can help them to hold up the pain and control the muscles at the time of labor and delivery.
- Likewise, during pregnancy, Kegels are recommended after the pregnancy to regain the health, for the speedy recovery and to regain bladder control hence strengthening the pelvic muscles.
- During the stage of pushing, strong pelvis muscles help to ease the pain at the time of delivery. Kegel exercise prepares you for the time of childbirth as it is the act of contracting and relaxing of the muscles. At the time of delivery, there are chances of getting an injury in the intimate area but the practice of relaxing your muscles can reduce the chances of injuries.
- By practicing Kegels, bladder control is improved. As when the uterus expands at the time of childbirth, it shears the muscles and ligaments that enclose it causing wear and tear. If a pregnant woman has weak muscles, she may experience urine leakage, referred to as Urinary Incontinence, it is the situation when there is no control over urination especially in the last three months. Activities like laughing, sneezing, coughing, jogging, or jumping can lead to leakage of urine occasionally. Performing Kegels will, therefore, prevent or lessen this condition.
- Kegel exercise can control the problem of fecal incontinence. This is a condition where you don’t have control over the stool and the stool starts leaking before you go to the washroom. Kegels can help to prevent this situation of fecal incontinence and strengthen the pelvic muscles to help solve this.
How to Do Kegel Exercises
Kegel exercises are simple and trouble-free to do. It is all about compressing and relaxing the same muscles you would use to stop an outflow of urine. Here’s how to do Kegels:
- The first step is to find and locate your kegel muscles. To find the right muscle you are required to insert your finger inside your vagina and try to squeeze the muscles which are surrounded.
(please note:- never try practicing Kegels while urinating)
- While practicing kegel only your pelvic floor muscle should be working after that relax and then repeat. Make sure that you are exercising without getting your tummy in. In the beginning, you may face a problem locating these muscles, but by time practice makes it easier. One should place a hand on his/her belly while doing Kegels to make sure it stays relaxed, this would work.
- Initially, if you’ve just started doing practicing, take time in between the contraction and relaxation by holding your breaths, and relax for a few seconds after each one. This exercise would make the muscles stronger.
If you are going through problems urinary and fecal incontinence that means if you have no control left over your urination and stool, then do Kegels when you sneeze, cough, or lift something heavy. This might help and you will find that it keeps you from leaking.
Pelvic Floor Exercises During Pregnancy
Do these pelvic exercises three times a day, 10 repetitions of each move.
- Belly Dancing On Floors
- The first step is to get down on your knees and hands, wrists under shoulders and knees hip-width apart.
- Stretch your abdominals tight and up, your navel should be near your spine; hold, breathing normally, keeping your back flat.
- Keep your abdomen under and bring your bones of the pelvis near your navel.
- While doing this exercise hold your breath for some seconds.
Practice belly dancing, to Strengthen back, upper body, and abdominal.
- Belly breathing is a very effective exercise. It strengthens your pelvic muscles and allows for an easier delivery while lowering the risk of incontinence
- Sit on the floor keeping your back straight with your legs crossed, and keep your hands on your belly.
- While sitting straight and keeping your lower body supported inhale through your nose and expand your belly while inhaling.
- Exhale through your mouth and pull in your abdomen and bring your navel toward your spine.
- While doing squat, hold on to a chair, or to any fixed object like it and stand with your feet apart than hip-width apart.
- Stay still deep down while doing squat, while always keeping weight on your heels. Repeat this for 5 times.
- Benefits of the squat combo are that it strengthens abs, legs, and pelvic floor.
How Often Should You Do Pelvic Floor Exercises?
Once you get used to these exercises, try to start off with 5 squeezes 3 times a day. Progressively increase this to 10 squeezes 5 times a day.