The Kegel Exercise, named after Dr. Arnold Kegel, is an exercise of the pubococcygeal muscles. This exercised is the regular contracting and relaxing of the pelvic floor muscle designed to restore muscle tone, reduce overactive bladder symptom, and to increase sexual gradification. This exercise has been shown to be of benefit to both men and women in the treatment of urinary incontinence.
Dr. Kegel, the Assistant Professor of Gynecology at the University of Southern California School of Medicine, popularized this exercise in the 1948 in the United States. However several of the ancient cultures developed several different exercises for the same muscles to improve health, longevity, spiritual development and sexual gratification. It was call the Deer Exercises by the Taoist of China. The Aswini Mudra (the horse gesture) by the Yogis of India.
Weakening of the pelvic muscles can be attributive to pregnancy, childbirth, obesity, and poor posture. Surgery can also damage the nerves controlling the urinary track or weaken the muscles, thus causing involuntary contractions and making it harder to control the bladder. Some medication such as sedatives, narcotics, and diuretics can have a detrimental effect in you controlling your urinary system. Chronic illness or conditions like multiple sclerosis, diabetes, stroke, and Parkinson disease can cause you to suffer from an overactive bladder.
For Women the first step in the Kegel Exercise is to determine which muscle that needs to be exercised. For women you can tell which muscles to use by squeezing the muscles in your genital area by pretending that you are trying to stop the flow of urine. This is the pubococcygeal muscle. Get a feeling where this muscle is and how it feels when it is being exercised.
For Men the Kegel exercise is done by contracting the anal sphincter instead of the urinary sphincter as in the woman's exercise. This is because the pubococcygeal muscle begins around the anus and travels to the urinary sphincter muscle.
Next you want to tighten these muscles and hold them for about four seconds and then relax. You want to repeat this process for about 10 or 20 times. Between each contraction of the muscles you want to make sure that you allow the muscles to relax completely. After you get the hang of it you will be able to contract the muscle for up to 10 seconds and then completely relax for 10 seconds.
Next you want to make sure that you do the Kegel exercises 10 times a day. This is important because if you do fewer than this number you will be lowering the effectiveness of the exercises. Do not become sloppy with the exercise and contract the rectum, your stomach muscles, and thigh muscles. You must exercise the pubococcygeal muscle only.
The great thing about Kegel exercises is that you can do them anywhere and no one will even know you are doing them if you are doing the exercise correctly. For example, you can do them at work, in your car, while you are washing dishes or even watching television. It doesn't matter where you do them as long as you do them every day.
You don't want to do these exercises while you are urinating. If you feel you are not exercising the pubococcygeal muscle correctly then women may stop the flow during urination just long enough to get a feel for the muscle again as you did in step one. If the Kegel exercise is performed during urination it could lead to urinary tract infection.
After childbirth a woman can use the Kegel exercise to return to her pre-pregnancy strength and muscle tone. Regular Kegel exercise can also increase sexual pleasure for the woman and their partners.
For men the Kegel exercise can be used to allow them to achieve orgasm with ejaculation and perhaps each multiple orgasms during sex.
Other items that may be of interest to you are Ben Wa Balls and Taoist Sexual Practices
Always consult your doctor before using this information.
This Article is nutritional in nature and is not to be construed as medical advice.