What are Kegel Exercises?
These exercises are named after Doctor Arnold Kegel. They are intended to strengthen a person’s pelvic muscles. In the past, these exercises have very often been recommended for women. However, they are rapidly becoming popular for men also.
Why Should Men Care About Them?
The bladder and urethra in men can be supported by undertaking these exercises. These exercises result in the muscles becoming stronger, which may help to increase the control of the bladder and bowel. They are also extremely helpful after a prostatectomy or urinary diversion. They can also assist a man in achieving stronger erections and assist a man in the greater control of ejaculations.
What Causes Weak Pelvic Muscles?
There are numerous amounts of causes for weak pelvic muscles including being overweight, lack of exercise, normal aging, strain on the bladder (hard coughing, sneezing and heavy lifting, straining at stool or urination), and prostate gland surgery.
How Are the Exercises Undertaken?
It is firstly important that the correct muscle is identified. You should not exercise your back, abdominal or upper leg muscles. You can establish the position of the correct muscles by undertaking the following:
– Attempt to stop the flow of urination when sitting on the toilet. If you can successfully do this then you have located the correct muscle. Once the correct muscle has been located, you should only carry out the Kegel exercise when you are not urinating. This will prevent urinary infections.
– Imagine that you have gas, but you are trying not to release it. A pulling sensation in your buttocks and rectum should be felt if you have located the correct muscles.
– Whilst lying down you should place one finger in the rectum. Then imagine that you are attempting to stop urine and BM from escaping whilst you tighten the muscles. The muscle in the rectum should tighten around your finger.
Once the correct muscles have been located then it is time to begin the exercises. You can undertake Kegel exercises anytime and in any place. It is imperative that you begin with an empty bladder. You should now proceed to contract your pelvic floor muscles for 3 to 5 seconds before relaxing them for 10 seconds. Complete 10 repetitions one to three times every day. If you can only hold the contractions for a few seconds at a time, then do not be disheartened, your strength will build with time.
As your muscles strengthen, it is advised to slowly increase the length of the contractions to a maximum of 10 second per contraction. Undertaking these exercises on a daily basis will give the best results. However, it is important to build up slowly in order to avoid exercising and placing stress upon the pelvic floor muscles, which can result in muscle exhaustion and an increased chance of incontinence. It may take four to six weeks in order to see results. In certain individuals it can take three to six months to see a difference in the control of the bladder.
How Can You Remember to Do Them?
Remembering to undertake your exercises in your daily routine can sometimes be the most difficult part of introducing any new exercise to your lifestyle. Listed below are some simple ways in which you can remember to undertake your exercises:
– Always choose the same hour of the day to undertake the exercises. For example, when you wake up, after lunch, or before bedtime.
– Log your daily routine including date, time, length of contractions, and number of exercises.
– Undertake the Kegel exercises during each television advertisement that you watch during the day.
– Undertake your Kegel exercises whilst in the elevator each day.
– When you are traveling in your car, you can undertake Kegels at the stop signs or stop lights.
– Or you can simply come up with your own personal idea.
And one final reminder is that Kegel exercises can be highly beneficial for men as well as women. It is important however, that they are undertaken in the correct manner and on a regular basis in order to strengthen the pelvic floor muscles.