The PC muscles (pubococcygeus) are a magical group that do so much for us, yet we rarely hear about them. When we do, it is without much explanation or any practical advice on how to work them out. Editors and writers simply say: Squeeze them in to tighten the vagina.
Hmmmm nope. Wrong. Very wrong.
If you’ve been having issues with low libido, lack of orgasm, lack of sensation below the belt in all forms, and even bladder control, Kegel exercises might be the thing you’ve been missing.
Here is everything you need to know about Kegels, how to do them, and why they are SO critical to your health.
What are your Kegels?
The Kegels are the group of muscles that make up the pelvic floor. Named for Dr. Arnold Kegel, they are responsible for many things, including holding in your pelvic your organs. Isn’t that fun? Your bladder, bowels, uterus, vagina, and vulva are all supported by the pelvic floor.
They extend the entirety of the pelvis to the coccyx (tailbone), much like a sling. A strong pelvic floor has many benefits including more controlled and longer orgasms and better bladder control.
When your Kegels are strong, they help you avoid the dreaded “sneeze-pee” situation, i.e. when you sneeze or laugh so hard a few drops of wee escape. This usually happens with age, which, incidentally, is why the pelvic floor gets weak. Gravity! Like all muscles, time causes sagging, so we’ve got to keep the PC muscles in mind.
What can you do about a weak pelvic floor?
It may seem a little wild, but you can actually give your pelvic floor a workout. Strengthening the pelvic floor can do wonders for your libido, orgasm quality, and bladder control. You definitely need to be doing these bad boys!
To locate your pelvic floor muscles, stop the flow of urine while you pee. The muscles that allow you to halt the stream are the pelvic floor muscles. Just be sure not to do this too often, as regularly messing with a full bladder can result in a UTI. Just do it once or twice to find the muscle group.
How to do Kegel exercises
Squeeze the pelvic floor muscles in. Try squeezing up, like you’re stopping the flow of urine and pulling the muscles up into your belly button. Hold for 5-10 seconds and then release. Repeat this 3-5 times, daily. You can work your way up to holding for 30 seconds, as your muscles get stronger.
You’ll notice a difference within a few days to weeks.
An unusual way to strengthen the pelvic floor is by taking mat pilates classes. These classes not only tone your abs, but focus on the pelvic floor and deeper abdominal muscles. If exercise classes are more your thing, you should definitely give it a try! Check out your local gym and see if they offer free classes—sometimes a group scenario can help keep you motivated (if the better sex doesn’t).
Get some Kegel balls
Our favorite way to do Kegels is with Kegel balls, they assist by adding weight to your pelvic floor, deepening the exercises. Some, like the Yoni Egg, are so heavy that you don’t even need to do any work. Your pelvic floor will naturally hold the balls in. Don’t wear a Yoni Egg for more than an hour or two, since the crystal material is slightly porous, meaning it can house bacteria. Always wash your Yoni with antibacterial soap, or dip it in boiling water to remove bacteria.
We’re big fans of Bennies from Unbound. These silicone balls are an awesome asset to your Kegel workout. Simply lube up and pop the Bennies into your vagina and do your exercises. You can walk around with them inside you all day if you want, you won’t be able to feel them. These balls give you the opportunity to see faster results. We all love faster results, right?
For the more technologically advanced amongst you, try Elvie. Elvie is a Kegel trainer that comes with it’s very own app, tracking your progress as your pelvic floor strength grows, and offering biofeedback. It’s pretty exciting to see the progress you’ve made and it can act as a good motivator.
Keep in mind that if you suffer from a tight pelvic floor, Kegels are not a good idea. For instance, if you have had (or have) vaginismus in the past, talk to your doctor. Doing Kegels will likely worsen symptoms. For any medical concerns, always speak with your OB-GYN before trying these workouts.