Kegel Exercises for Vaginal Health
The Pubococcygeus Muscle
The vagina—just like every other part of your body—needs regular exercise to keep it resilient, healthy and happy. Overtime, the vagina and its surrounding muscles on the pelvic floor can weaken, stretch, become torn and no longer offer support due to pregnancy, childbirth, aging, being overweight, abdominal surgery and inactivity. An important part of vaginal health is exercising a muscle called the PC muscle (pubococcygeus muscle). It is a hammock-shaped muscle that stretches from the pubic bone to the tail bone. It forms the pelvic floor and supports the pelvic organs including the bladder, urethra and vagina.
Advantages of Good PC Health
Exercising your PC muscle has numerous advantages because it strengthens the pelvic floor. Strengthening this area will help prevent prolapse (slipping or sagging of the uterus), incontinence (loss of bladder or bowel control) and constipation. For women who are pregnant, a fit PC muscle will help relax muscles during birth allowing for easier deliveries through the birthing canal. After vaginal births, working the PC muscle will benefit you by restoring vaginal muscle tone and promoting perineal healing (the area between the anus and vagina that can stretch or tear during birth).
Some women suffer from painful disorders like vaginismus (pain from vaginal insertion), dyspareunia (painful intercourse) and female sexual dysfunction (loss of sex drive or diminished sexual satisfaction). Working your PC muscles will help make your vagina and pelvic floor stronger and more elastic which means it will stretch easier during sexual intercourse. It will also help stimulate the sex drive by increasing blood flow to the pelvic region which will enhance sensitivity and arousal as well as allow you to achieve orgasm easier. It is important however to consult your doctor if you suffer from any of the above disorders, before beginning any exercise routine.
Enhancing the Sexual Experience
Training your PC muscles is not only for women who suffer from disorders. PC workouts are very beneficial for all women, regardless of your age, your vagina’s physical condition, or whether or not you have given birth. Why? Since the PC muscle also encircles the outside of the vagina, healthy PC muscles will improve sexual arousal, allow you to feel your partner more fully during intercourse and intensify your partner’s pleasure by tightening the vagina cavity, thus enhancing lovemaking for both of you. And, that’s not all. Strong PCs allow you to reach orgasm more easily, experience more powerful and pleasurable orgasms, and may even help you achieve multiple orgasms as you learn to better control and respond to your sexual arousal. Fit PC muscles also improve G-spot stimulation and can help you learn to experience G-spot orgasms and female ejaculation. Rhythmic squeezing of your PC muscles during intercourse will help increase lubrication, stimulate the clitoris, and massage your partner’s penis to take him to new heights of sexual ecstasy.
Finding your PC Muscle
It is very easy to find your PC muscle. You probably use it on a daily basis without even being aware of it. It is the muscle you use when you stop urinating mid-stream. The muscles of your pelvic floor tighten and your vaginal muscles clench when you activate this muscle. A method of locating the PC muscle is to insert a finger or two inside your vagina and squeeze until you feel the muscles gripping your fingers. So now that you’ve found it, how do you exercise it?
Kegel exercises are how you work the PC muscles, strengthen the pelvic floor and restore muscle tone to this area. Named after Dr. Arnold Kegel, kegels consist of contracting and relaxing the muscles in rhythmic intervals. There are different types of kegels and different methods for exercising them. Regularity when doing kegels is more important than how many you do in sequence. It is therefore recommended to do any of the following exercises three times a day. You can even mix them up. The exercises become easier the more often you do them. Remember to relieve your bladder first before performing kegels.
The Basic kegel is a slow, controlled squeeze of the PC muscle, as you draw upward and inward. Imagine that you are sucking water up through your vagina (you can actually do this in the bathtub when your PC muscles are strong). Each time you do this hold for a count of 3-5 seconds. Repeat 10 times.
Pulsing kegels involves squeezing and releasing the PC muscle rapidly in quick succession, in a pulsing tempo. It is important to maintain control during these, instead of aiming for speed. It is not a race. Work your way up 25 or 30 pulses.
This exercise engages the PC muscles more thoroughly giving a great workout. Slowly squeeze in, taking a deep breath, then slowly, gently push out, releasing your breath. Continue in a slow, in-out sequence, breathing in, and then out in time with each contraction. Repeat 10-20 times.
This is my favorite kegel and I find it really works to tighten those muscles. Imagine that your vagina is an elevator shaft with the opening at the vagina entrance. Slowly pull the muscles in starting at the vagina, continuing to tighten as you go up the shaft like an elevator going up to the top floor. Pause at the top, and then slowly lower in reverse sequence. You will feel the difference just after a few times. Repeat 10-20 times.
Kegels and Sex Toys
There are several “sex toy” products now available on the market that enhances kegel exercises. I think of them as barbells for the vagina. Just as adding weight-training to an exercise routine helps improve strength and muscle tone, adding sex toys to your kegels increases resistance and gives you something to squeeze around, adding an extra benefit to the workout. You can do this as part of your regular kegel workout, or during masturbation. Who knew that doing something so pleasurable could benefit you as well! Try using the following toys while enjoying clitoral stimulation simultaneously to enhance your enjoyment as well as the power of your orgasms.