What is the pelvic floor?
It contains the organs of the pelvis. Which are: the bladder, the uterus and the rectum. The pelvic floor muscles hold these organs stable.
Why is it important to restore the pelvic floor after a pregnancy?
There are some things that result to the “Vaginal Relaxation Syndrome”. These are: pregnancy, childbirth, natural aging and excessive weight gain. However, the positive thing is that the situation is reversible. That is through pelvic muscle strengthening exercises. The Kegel exercises. So, you can help your body by being consistent and patient.
Thus, when we exercise and stimulate the vaginal muscles, the benefits are multiple. For women, but also for the male reproductive system:
- Prevention of unwanted urinary incontinence.
- Improvement of sexual intercourse. As the woman’s orgasm is more intense. Since the muscles contract more strongly and rhythmically.
- Strengthening the ligaments that hold the uterus high, preventing its prolapse.
How to locate the pelvic floor muscles?
An easy way to locate these muscles is to stop and start the flow of urine. While you are in the toilet. Imagine being surprised by something and suddenly having to stop urinating.
Tips before starting the Kegel exercises:
- Empty the bladder.
- Don’t hold your breath, instead tighten.
- Don’t get disappointed if you don’t see instant results. The improvement is gradual, but spectacular. Within a period of 6 months.
How to do Kegel exercises?
Kegel exercises are more effective, while performing them in all 3 positions. Standing, sitting and supine position. In addition, they should be performed at regular intervals. Throughout the day and on a weekly basis. After all, these exercises don’t require much time and equipment. Every day, 5 minutes, up to 3 times is enough. For instance, they can be performed while driving or sitting in the office.
Supine position (10-15 repetitions)
Exercise 1: Take a supine position. With legs open at the pelvic opening and feet on the ground. Inhale through the nose filling the abdomen with air. Next, exhale. Emptying the air and tightening the muscles of the vagina. As if holding the urination. Do it for 3 seconds, then relax. You can also increase the contraction time by up to 10 seconds.
Sitting position (10 repetitions)
Sit comfortably on a hard chair. With your knees open at the pelvis opening point. Then tighten the pelvic floor muscles quickly. Without holding back and instantly relax. Do 1 contraction per second.
Standing position (10-15 repetitions)
Stand straight with your legs open and start turning your pelvis. When leaning back, tighten the pelvic floor muscles. Then press the navel back to the spine and up. As if sucking the internal organs upwards. Then hold for 10 seconds.
Physical Education Teacher
University of Athens