Unlock the power of kegel exercises! Discover the specific muscles targeted by these simple yet effective exercises and learn how to strengthen your pelvic floor for improved health and wellness.
Which Muscles Do The Kegel Exercises Strengthen Table of Contents
Understanding the Pelvic Floor Muscles
The pelvic floor is a group of muscles that span the bottom of the pelvis, acting as a supportive hammock for the pelvic organs. These muscles are crucial for proper bladder and bowel control, sexual function, and overall stability of the pelvis.
The primary muscles that make up the pelvic floor are:
- Levator ani: This fan-shaped muscle consists of three parts—the iliococcygeus, pubococcygeus, and puborectalis. It is the largest and most important muscle of the pelvic floor.
- Coccygeus: This triangular muscle sits at the back of the pelvis and helps to support the coccyx (tailbone).
- Obturator internus: While not a direct part of the pelvic floor, this muscle lines the pelvic sidewall and plays a role in stabilizing the pelvis and supporting the pelvic organs.
Role of kegel exercises
kegel exercises, named after their creator, Dr. Arnold Kegel, are designed to strengthen the pelvic floor muscles to prevent or treat pelvic floor disorders such as urinary incontinence, pelvic organ prolapse, and sexual dysfunction. These exercises involve contracting and releasing the pelvic floor muscles to progressively increase muscle strength and endurance.
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Targeted Muscles During kegel exercises
kegel exercises primarily target the following pelvic floor muscles:
- Pubococcygeus: This muscle controls urine flow and contracts during orgasm. Strengthening the pubococcygeus can help improve bladder control and enhance sexual pleasure.
- Puborectalis: This muscle is responsible for maintaining fecal continence. Regular kegel exercises can help prevent or alleviate symptoms of fecal incontinence.
- Iliococcygeus: This muscle contributes to overall pelvic floor support and stability. Strengthening iliococcygeus can help prevent or improve pelvic organ prolapse symptoms.
How to Perform kegel exercises
To perform kegel exercises correctly, follow these steps:
- First, identify your pelvic floor muscles by trying to stop the flow of urine during urination or tightening the muscles that prevent you from passing gas.
- Once you have identified the correct muscles, lie down or sit in a comfortable position.
- Contract your pelvic floor muscles, holding the contraction for 5 seconds, then relax for 5 seconds. Repeat this 10 times per session.
- Gradually increase the duration of contraction and relaxation up to 10 seconds as you gain strength. Aim for at least three sessions per day.
- Remember to breathe normally, and avoid tensing your abdominal, buttock, or thigh muscles during the exercises.
Which Muscles Do The kegel exercises Strengthen? Example:
Imagine you are a new mom who has recently given birth. You notice that you sometimes leak urine when you cough or sneeze. To regain control and support your pelvic floor, you decide to begin a routine of daily kegel exercises. After several weeks of consistent practice, you find that your pelvic floor muscles have become stronger and you no longer experience involuntary leakage. Eventually, you also notice improved sexual function and satisfaction.
Congratulations! You now have a better understanding of the muscles kegel exercises target and their importance for optimal pelvic health. By incorporating kegel exercises into your daily routine, you can strengthen your pelvic floor and experience the numerous benefits these simple exercises offer. Share this article with your friends to spread the word about pelvic floor health, and explore our other guides for more information on Pelvic Floor Therapy.