Pelvic floor exercises or Kegel exercises help strengthen the pubococcygeus muscles. It was Californian gynaecologist Dr. Arnold Kegel who designed the exercises in 1948, mainly with the intention of helping women suffering from urinary incontinence.
Besides this, Kegel exercises also prove helpful in treating erectile dysfunction and helps men improve their sexual performance in bed. To know how to do pelvic floor exercises for men, just read on.
- First locate the pelvic floor muscles by stopping the urine flow the next time you pass urine. You have to accurately feel where the muscles are located as the surrounding abdominals, thighs and glutes have to remain relaxed while performing pelvic floor exercises.
- Pelvic floor exercises consist of squeezing and immediate releasing of the muscles 15 times a day, without holding of any contractions.
- To start off, do a set of 15 squeezes twice a day. Squeeze only your pelvic floor muscles and not your stomach and thigh muscles. Though this may seem difficult at first, with time and practice, you will be able to perfect it.
- With time, you will be able to gradually increase the number of contractions you make until you make 40-50 contractions at a time.
- You can do these exercises any time of the day, anywhere you want as no one will know you are doing them.
- It is better to perform your Kegel exercises every day in different positions like when you are seated, lying down and standing and make sure you do your pelvic floor exercises every day.
Once you are comfortable doing your pelvic floor exercises, you can try out these variations of the exercise, which includes increasing the frequency and quality of contractions. As you get comfortable with these variations, you can slowly increase the number of repetitions until you reach 40 or 50 counts.
1. Endurance contractions
With endurance contractions, you have to focus on the quality of the contractions. You not only have to tighten the muscles surrounding the anus and urethra, but also ‘lift’ them up. Then, contract and leave them contracted for at least 10 seconds, or as long as you can.
Next, relax for a minute and repeat. Keep repeating this until you make one-minute contractions. Perform these exercises at least thrice or four times a day as the more repetitions performed, the better it helps at increasing muscle endurance.
2. Rhythmic contractions
With rhythmic contractions, you have to powerfully contract the muscles and hold them there for three to five seconds, and relax for two to three seconds. You have to repeat these rhythmic contractions for three to five minutes.
With regular practice, you will soon be able to do these contractions for a maximum of 20 minutes. Gradually, you find an improvement in the strength, endurance and control of your muscles.
3. Rapid contractions
With this variation, you have to practice control by performing a sequence of fast and strong contractions consisting of one quick maximum contraction and an immediate relaxation. Repeat the contractions until you lose control on your muscles.
At the start, you may be able to only contract and relax your pelvic floor muscles for five to ten seconds. With regular practice and commitment to practice at least three to four times a day, you will be able to perform a minute of rapid powerful contractions.
4. Irregular contractions
Perform various rapid contractions for one rhythmic segment and then perform endurance contractions for another segment while listening to something rhythmic like music. While the length of your segments does not matter, the goal here is to vary the style of contractions.
As this is a rather difficult exercise, you need not do them daily. At the most, you can do them three times a week for as long as possible.