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Kegel training, also known as pelvic floor muscle training, involves exercises to strengthen the pelvic floor muscles that support the bladder, uterus, and rectum. These exercises are beneficial for both men and women and can help with various issues such as urinary incontinence, pelvic organ prolapse, and sexual dysfunction. In this article, we will explain what Kegel training is and provide guidance on how to do it effectively.
The pelvic floor muscles are a group of muscles that run from the pubic bone at the front of the pelvis to the tailbone at the back. They form a hammock-like structure that supports the pelvic organs and helps with bladder and bowel control. In women, the pelvic floor muscles also play a crucial role in sexual function.
The pelvic floor muscles can weaken over time due to various factors such as pregnancy, childbirth, aging, and obesity. Weak pelvic floor muscles can result in urinary and fecal incontinence, pelvic organ prolapse, and sexual dysfunction. Kegel training can help strengthen these muscles, improve bladder and bowel control, reduce the risk of pelvic organ prolapse, and enhance sexual function.
Identify the muscles: To do Kegel exercises, you need to first identify the pelvic floor muscles. One way to do this is to stop urination midstream. The muscles you use to do this are the pelvic floor muscles.
Contract the muscles: Once you have identified the pelvic floor muscles, contract them for about 5 seconds. You should feel a pulling sensation in the pelvic area. If you feel your buttocks, thighs, or abdomen tightening, you are not using the right muscles.
Relax the muscles: After holding the contraction for 5 seconds, relax the muscles for 5 seconds.
Repeat: Repeat the contraction and relaxation process for 10 to 15 times, three times a day.
Start slowly and gradually increase the number of repetitions and the length of time you hold the contractions.
Don't hold your breath while doing Kegel exercises.
Avoid squeezing your buttocks or thighs while doing Kegel exercises.
Don't overdo it. Doing too many Kegel exercises can lead to muscle fatigue.
Be patient. It may take several weeks to notice any improvements.
Practice good posture: Sit and stand up straight to engage your pelvic floor muscles.
Maintain a healthy weight: Excess weight can put pressure on the pelvic floor muscles and weaken them.
Avoid constipation: Straining to pass stool can weaken the pelvic floor muscles.
Limit caffeine and alcohol: These substances can irritate the bladder and lead to urinary incontinence.
Kegel training is a simple yet effective way to strengthen the pelvic floor muscles and improve bladder and bowel control, reduce the risk of pelvic organ prolapse, and enhance sexual function. By following the steps and tips outlined in this article, you can start doing Kegel exercises today and reap the benefits for years to come.
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