What are the Pelvis Muscles?
The pelvic muscles are a large mass of muscles that run from the pubic bone to the tailbone. Both the rectum and urine channel run through these pelvic muscles that help hold the bladder and bowel in place.
These are not muscles you exercise regularly. When you are younger, these muscles are as tight as a trampoline and they bounce back when we cough or sneeze. As you get older, these muscles relax and weaken, and act more like a hammock than a trampoline.
What are the Benefits of the Kegel Exercises?
These exercises help people regain urinary control when they are done regularly.
If you are motivated, you can do the exercises on your own effectively. Most people begin to see results in a few weeks, but for those men whose muscles are extremely weak, the results may not be noticeable for several months. If your progress seems slow, do not become discouraged and stop before these muscles make significant progress.
Strengthening your pelvic muscles can also help your incontinence by enabling you to hold urine in the bladder until the urge passes so that you can get to the toilet before leakage occurs.
How do I Locate the Pelvic Muscles?
The following methods have been used to help identify the specific muscles that you will be exercising with the Kegel exercises:
How Do I Exercise the Pelvic Muscle?
When Should I Exercise the Pelvic Muscle?
These exercises may be done at any time: watching TV, riding in a car, etc. At first you may not be able to hold this contraction for the full count of 20 seconds; however, you will slowly build up to this. The muscle may start to tire after about 6 or 8 exercises. If this happens, stop and go back to exercising later.
What are Some Common Mistakes?
Never use your stomach, legs or buttock muscles. To find out if you are using your stomach muscle, place your hand on your abdomen while you squeeze your pelvic muscle. If you feel your abdomen move, then you are using these muscles. In time, you will learn to practice effortlessly, eventually working these exercises into your lifestyle: tighten when you walk, before you sneeze, etc.
When Will I Notice a Change?
After a couple of weeks of constant daily exercise, you will begin to notice less urinary accidents and after 3 months, you will see an even bigger improvement.
Can These Exercises Hurt Me?
NO! These exercises cannot harm you in any way. Most people find them relaxing. If you feel back or stomach pain after you exercise, then you are probably trying too hard and using your stomach muscles. Go back and find the pelvic muscle, and remember this exercise should feel easy. Remember to relax.