The Ultimate Guide to a Strong Pelvic Floor
Having a weak pelvic floor can really put your life on hold preventing you from doing the things you once loved, but have since stopped because of the lack of confidence your bladder leaks gives you. In this week's blog we discuss what your pelvic floor is, how to do pelvic floor exercises (known as Kegels), how to tell if you have a weak pelvic floor and very importantly – how to do Kegels correctly.
What are pelvic floor exercises?
Pelvic floor exercises which are known as Kegels was developed by Californian Gynaecologist Dr Arnold Kegel. Kegels are exercises which are clinically proven as an effective nonsurgical treatment for pelvic floor weakness. They consists of repeatedly contracting and relaxing the muscles that form part of the pelvic floor.
Did you know that men have a pelvic floor too?
By doing your Kegels this helps to strengthen your pelvic floor muscles, which supports the uterus, bladder, small intestine and rectum.
You can feel your pelvic floor muscles when you try to stop the flow of urine when on the toilet but it is not recommended that you do this regularly as it can cause damage to the bladder.
To strengthen your pelvic floor muscles and do your Kegels correctly
Sit comfortably and imagine holding in wind and wee at the same time. That is the area you want to focus on and squeeze. Hold for up to 10 seconds and then gently relax your pelvic floor and then repeat ten times. This is known as a Slow Kegel.
You then want to follow this with 10 Fast Kegels. Aim to do these 2 to 3 times a day.
Remember not to hold your breath or clench your stomach, bottom or thighs when doing these. Overtime you can build these exercises up just like any other by squeezing for a few seconds each time, adding more squeezes and Kegel weights. But be careful not to over do it! Make sure you rest between sets just like you would in the gym.
The benefit of using our Secret Whispers Kegel Weights is that they also teach you were your correct pelvic floor muscles are.
After a few months you should start to notice a difference but this isn't your sign to stop! You should continue to do your pelvic floor exercises at least twice a day for life!
Once you get in the habit it will become second nature. We recommend doing your Kegels when you brush your teeth and we hope that you do this twice a day!:-)
Most effective pelvic floor exercises
Kegel weights - the best pelvic floor toner for women. The weights challenge your pelvic floor. Think of them as The Dumbbell For your Pelvic Floor. You use a dumbbell to strengthen and tone your arm muscles. Your pelvic floor is the same and needs exercised. They are simple and effective. Just 15 minutes a day.
The Slow and Fast Kegel techniques that we discussed above can be done anywhere and at any time – so no excuses. No one should know you are doing them. So no raised eyebrows ladies!
Did you know that there are 3 types of Kegels?:
Helps increase the strength of your pelvic floor and helps your muscles hold back urine.
Lift your pelvic floor muscles as hard as you can (like we described earlier above), not bottom or stomach
Hold muscles tight for up to 10 seconds
Slowly relax your muscles and rest for 5 seconds
Repeat 10 times 2 to 3 times a day
Helps pelvic floor cope with pressure. For example when you cough, sneeze, laugh or jump. Definitely helps with the trampoline too!
Lift your pelvic muscles quickly
Hold tight for 1 second
Relax for 1 second
Repeat 10 times, 2 to 3 times a day
This method is known as ‘bracing’ yourself by squeezing your pelvic muscles before you cough, laugh, sneeze, jump, lift something or any activity that makes you leak. This can be 98% effective.
You should continue to breathe as normal. So no holding your breath as you squeeze!
Does holding in pee strengthen your pelvic floor?
We have all held on to pee longer than we probably should. Where that is because you forgot to go before a long car journey or simply thinking “I can wait a bit longer” but, holding onto pee for too long regularly can possibly cause damage to your bladder, weaken your pelvic floor, incontinence and not being able to empty your bladder fully.
It is not harmful to hold on to your pee for a few minutes till you can make it to the toilet, however it is harmful to hold on to your pee for longer periods of time. Holding onto your pee for longer periods of time can cause UTI’s as the bacteria builds up.
How do I know if my pelvic floor is weak?
Warning signs of a weak pelvic floor
Leaking when you sneeze, cough, laugh or run
Struggling to make it to the toilet on time
Passing wind from vagina or anus when bending over
Tampons falling out
Sensation of a heavy vagina
Recurrent UTI’s or thrush
Painful sex/inability to orgasm
The weight of the uterus sitting on the pelvic floor during pregnancy and pregnancy can also be a cause of a weak pelvic floor.
How do Kegel Weights strengthen the pelvic floor?
Our Secret Whispers Kegel Weights are The dumbbell for your pelvic floor. Your pelvic floor needs exercising just like every other muscle in the body. Of course you can do pelvic floor exercises without a Kegel weight but that doesn’t necessarily mean you're doing it properly. When you insert the Kegel Weights, gravity will naturally want them to fall out. The beauty of our weights is that when inserted, the correct pelvic floor muscles engage to hold them in.
They teach you where your pelvic floor muscles are.
The Secret Whispers Kegel Weights are so easy to use!
Insert like a tampon and don't worry about them going too far up. Gravity will bring them down to their natural resting place.
Squeeze your pelvic muscles like you're trying to stop the flow of urine and stop wind at the same time.
But don't clench your bottom, stomach or thighs when doing this. We want to isolate the pelvic muscles.
You’ll want to hold that squeeze for up to 10 seconds and release it slowly. Do this 10 times and repeat twice a day. Then end each repetition with 10 Fast Kegels – up fast for a few seconds and release slowly. Try doing this 10 times also, at least twice a day!
You don't have to shy away from once enjoyable activities because of your bladder leaks, all you need is the Secret Whispers Kegel Kit and the motivation to work at strengthening your pelvic floor every day! The great thing about Kegel weights and pelvic floor exercises is you can do them whenever and wherever you are.
If you would like to read more about The Secret Whispers Kegel Kit read our blogs: