HOW TO DO KEGEL EXERCISES CORRECTLY AND ACTIVATE THE PELVIC FLOOR
Dr. Arnold Kegel is the creator of these fabulous exercises, which are intended to strengthen the pelvic floor muscles in cases of urinary incontinence, enuresis, prostatitis, prolapse, tears, post-surgery reeducation, and sexual dysfunctions, among others. They are very simple exercises that the patient can comfortably perform at home, of course, after the physiotherapist has taught and corrected before.
In relation to the title of this article, they will ask themselves: What is the Core and what does it have to do with the pelvic floor? What are Kegel’s exercises about? Next we will explain these unknowns, their function, recommendations and more.
What is the core?
The Core refers more to a functional concept than anatomical, because its ability to resist daily activities and reflex responses in the body to prevent future injuries, poor postures and muscle imbalances whose main symptom is pain is of utmost importance.
The core is formed by a set of muscles that give stability to the central area of the body, because it is located in the center of gravity of the body. It involves the muscles: lumbo-pelvics, hips and adjacent osteoarticular structures. A Core in optimal conditions gives the spine the necessary stability against disturbing and compressive forces, and also generates and distributes the force exerted by gravity on the body in sports and day-to-day activities.
The rehabilitation of lumbo-pelvic instability focuses on the deep muscles of the trunk, transverse abdomen, diaphragm and multifid.
Core concept: lumbopelvic stabilization
The following link of Physiotherapy Online, explains what is the Core, what are the structures that make it up, what it is used for and will also watch several videos to improve lumbopelvic stability.
How does Core relate to the pelvic floor?
The contraction of the pelvic floor, as mentioned above, involves the diaphragm, the transverse, deep abdominal muscles and multifidos find out more at vtight-gel.com. If these muscles are weakened, disorganized or uncoordinated, they can cause very painful and uncomfortable health problems for both men and women.
This means that although there is a very strong pelvic floor but the core muscles are weakened, at the time a reflex act such as cough occurs, an injury can occur that generates a dysfunction in the pelvic floor muscles and so it alters both physiological and anatomical functions, for not being able to respond adequately to this abrupt force. That is why, you cannot strengthen the pelvic floor without forgetting the Core, it would be absurd to do so.
Procedure to identify the Core
It is very important to know yourself; in this case it is important to know how to identify the Core and how it works correctly, to achieve the objectives set forth in the Rehabilitation of pelvic floor dysfunctions. It is very simple to do it:
Stand supine (lying down) on the bed, stretcher and even floor, with your knees bent or extended, and with your hands on your abdomen just at the level of your belly button
Check if it is done correctly: when you cough the abdomen you should contract before this reaction, if on the contrary, the abdomen raises means that there is an incoordination in the work of the Core.
When coughing, pressure is produced from the lungs to the diaphragm, which in turn presses down the entire abdominal cavity. If the transverse and pelvic floor muscles do not contract automatically with that pressure from the diaphragm, the abdomen and pelvic floor will tend to distend and expand, bulging outward, which is the way the area can be injured.
Procedure to identify the transverse muscle of the abdominal rectum
To correctly perform the pelvic floor strengthening and core coordination exercises it is essential to know how to identify and differentiate the transverse muscle of the abdominal rectum. To achieve this, perform the following steps:
- Relax and do not move the pelvis, thighs or buttocks
- Do not hold your breath, the diaphragm forms a very important part in these exercises
- Place in left lateral recumbency with knees and hip at 90 ° flexion
- Place the right hand between the navel and the pubic bone, placing it near the hip bone never in the center of the abdomen.
- Press lightly with the fingertips in the groove of that hip, as if trying to grab it.
Relax your abdomen completely
Then contract the pelvic floor muscles as if you were avoiding urination or escaping
If you feel that the muscle next to the hip contracted, it indicates that it is being done correctly, that is, the deep transverse muscle is being activated at the same time as that of the pelvic floor because they are programmed to work together.
The contraction should be very soft and should allow you to keep it breathing and talking normally for a while. If you do not allow it, you are using the abdominal rectum.
To also exercise the diaphragm, you must gently but firmly blow the flame of a candle without extinguishing it, while contracting the pelvic floor muscle and the transverse abdomen. This will help improve the coordination of the diaphragm with the core.
CORE exercises to strengthen the pelvic floor more effectively.
It has already been mentioned that in order to have a strong pelvic floor, it is not only enough to exercise it only to him, the diaphragm and the Core must also be strengthened, in order to avoid pelvic floor dysfunctions. The following video explains some exercises that will allow you to achieve muscle balance between the pelvic floor and the core.
What is Kegel exercises about?
The Kegel exercises are physical activities simple and discreet consisting of performing cycles of contraction and relaxation of the muscles of the pelvic floor in order to strengthen them to avoid dysfunctions such as urinary incontinence, enuresis, prostatitis, prolapses, lacerations, rehabilitation post-surgery , sexual dysfunctions, among others.
Reasons for pelvic floor dysfunctions
- High and poorly distributed weight loads
- Bad postures
- High impact sports
- Pelvic-lumbar pain
- Chronic cough
- Muscle weakness of both the core and the pelvic floor
Recommendations for performing Kegel exercises
Before teaching them how to perform Kegel exercises or use supplements from Naturactin, the following recommendations should be taken into account and not forgotten.
To perform these exercises, not many tools are required and even none, they are not high impact, physical preparation is not required and can be done by anyone. They are comfortable, simple and effective, there are no excuses for not making them.
The goal is to repeatedly contract and relax the pubococcygeal muscles for at least 5 minutes 3 times a day
Find a quiet and comfortable place, where you feel well and can concentrate to do the exercises
The easiest way to know if the correct muscles are working, is to contract the sphincters when you feel like going to the bathroom (when urinating or evacuating), repeat 2 to 3 times. This activity is only to locate the muscles well, if you have already achieved it, do not do it again, since it is harmful for your health to interrupt the body’s physiological process. Don’t make it a habit
This maneuver to interrupt urination or evacuation will only be repeated once a week, to assess the progress of rehabilitation
- It can be done sitting, lying or standing
- You must not stop breathing
- You should never push down, that is, force the urination or evacuation process
When you perform the voluntary contraction of the muscles surrounding the vagina and anus, you should imagine that they pull in and up, maintaining the position for at least 5 seconds and then you should relax the muscles
Do not do Kegel exercises if you have a catheter
When lying or sitting, you should have the muscles of the thighs, buttocks and abdomen relaxed. Getting the wrong muscles can put more pressure on the muscles that control the bladder. Just squeeze the pelvic muscles
- If you are a beginner, start lying down (supine)
- Do not tighten other muscles at the same time
- You may feel tired at first
It is important to consider small achievements such as doing a few more repetitions every day, and so surely, you will notice as the days go by you do not get tired as the number of repetitions increases
You can start by performing series of 10-20 contractions / relaxations several times a day
It may seem in principle that it is difficult to find time for its realization, but little by little, as the ease of its realization is verified at any time and circumstance
The constancy in its realization is fundamental
Squeeze the muscles and hold until after sneezing. Prepare before sneezing, lifting an object or jumping. Sudden increase in pressure can damage those muscles
Kegel exercises What are they and how to perform them correctly?
Kegel exercises consist of strengthening the pelvic floor muscles in order to improve control of the urethral, anal sphincter and even the core muscles. Although it is common to practice it for urinary incontinence, they are also used to improve sexual dysfunctions, prolapse, excellent for post-operative, among others.
The following video explains some of Kegel’s exercises and their importance
Next, the following blog is another reference that explains the importance of performing Kegel exercises and exercising the Core in cases of pelvic floor dysfunctions.
Steps to perform Kegel exercises
Slow (Beginner Level): Contract the pubococcygeal muscles inward and upward, hold for 5 seconds, then relax for 5 seconds and repeat 3 to 4 times. Progressively increase the repetitions and the contraction time.
Fast (Advanced Level): quickly contract and relax the pubococcygeal muscles and maintain the position for 2 to 3 minutes. Increase progressively as the exercises no longer run out.
Elevator (Advanced Level): contract five times and maintain the position between each contraction, as if with each contraction the pubococcygeal muscles were slowly ascending.
In the form of waves (Advanced): Try to contract the vaginal muscles first and then the anal sphincter, simulating a wave, and relax in the opposite direction. Perform 3 to 5 times for 3 minutes or more.
Strengthen your pelvic floor. Kegel exercises for beginners
As mentioned in the recommendations, if you are a beginner begin the practice of these exercises in a supine position (lying down). Below, this video shows some exercises to strengthen the pelvic floor for people who have never done it, they will see how practical and simple that turns out to perform them.
Strengthen your pelvic floor. Kegel exercises advanced level
This video shows some exercises in a sedentary and standing position to strengthen the pelvic floor, these are exercises with a little more difficulty, but you will also see how practical and simple it is to perform them.
Lumbo-pelvic work has become a worldwide trend for both sports performance and musculoskeletal rehabilitation. Problems such as urinary incontinence, pain and dysfunctions during sexual intercourse, vaginal and bladder prolapse are very common pathologies that can improve markedly with Kegel exercises.
They are very beneficial since they improve the person’s self-esteem, facilitates delivery especially to first-time mothers, increases blood flow in the pubococcygeal area improving their sensitivity and even lubrication, which translates into better sexual function, and of course improves muscle tone I insist there are no excuses for not making them and they are very effective if they are persistent.