Strengthening your pelvic floor is critical to your overall health, posture, and orgasmic health. But your Kegels aren’t working. Yarlap is the sponsor of this post, showing you what will work.
Why Your Kegels Aren’t Working
The pelvic floor is a big player in your health. Many practitioners consider it the grounding force of your entire body. The most common issues with a weak pelvic floor include urinary incontinence, poor posture, mom pouch, hip pain, and back pain. But, considering we’re in the middle of The Sexual Health series, I’d like to add that poor pelvic health decreases your ability to orgasm, making sex painful and plummeting your libido.
Unfortunately, the answer to strengthening the pelvic floor feels as elusive as a healthy pelvic floor, doing more kegel exercises. Kegel’s are the gold standard in strengthening this muscle group. But this form of exercise has proven harder than most any other combination.
If you’re honest, when was the last time you effectively completed your daily kegel workout?
Like most people, you attempt it for a day, maybe two but quickly let it slide in the sea of other tasks you need to accomplish. Knowing kegel’s are a good idea but not one worthy of the work.
I get it. Kegels are easy to put off, mostly because it’s hard to see progress. You can’t necessarily see this group of muscles. But you can feel them, even if you don’t think about them regularly. This group of muscles changes how you feel pleasure and present yourself in the world.
You know you need to strengthen your pelvic floor. But if Kegels aren’t working, what will?
Quick Anatomy Lesson: The Pelvic Floor
Understanding how the pelvic floor works make sense as to why Kegels aren’t working, at least not long-term.
The quick anatomy lesson: Your pelvic floor is a bowl-shaped group of skeletal muscles at the bottom of your pelvis. It acts like a hammock to the pelvic organs like your bladder, uterus, and rectum.
Your pelvic floor is part of your core, consisting of four parts: the deep back muscles, abdominal muscles, diaphragm, and pelvic floor. In health, these muscle groups work in harmony, or should, to prevent injury and maintain health. The goal is to get them to work in tandem with each other. Outside of that, it can cause excessive weakening in other muscle groups leading to two main problems with the pelvic floor:
- Underactive (weak) pelvic floor
- Overactive (weak) pelvic floor
In both cases, it causes weakening.
An overactive pelvic floor is equally as weak as an underactive one. The difference lies in how they are treated. Doing Kegels with an overactive pelvic floor only leads to more weakening and potential problems. Proving, Kegels aren’t for everyone and aren’t the only method for strengthening the pelvic floor.
A better way to strengthen your pelvic floor
The best place to start is always with a pelvic floor physical therapist. These therapists can rule out whether you are struggling with an overactive or underactive pelvic floor, changing the direction in how you support it. It’s a service all women should be encouraged to do, especially after birth.
I also recommend the Yarlap device to strengthen the pelvic floor. It’s an auto-kegel device, meaning you get the benefit of Kegels without attempting to figure out how to do them correctly. Or questioning if the work is helping or hurting you.
The Yarlap device uses neuromuscular electrical stimulation to contract and relax your muscles for you. It happens just like the natural process that occurs in your body daily. For instance, when you work out, your brain sends electrical signals to the relevant muscles igniting a response, whether to contract or relax.
How to Do Kegels Without The Work
The Yarlap device leverages this system to contract and relax the pelvic floor in the most effective way possible without you moving a muscle.
Plus, it meets you right where you are, whether you struggle with an overactive or underactive pelvic region. It provides the proper support using different safe and effective programs designed inside the device.
Yarlap is the first and only FDA-cleared device designed to do Kegels for you. Taking away the questions on whether you’re strengthening your pelvic floor by doing them for you, creating fast and effective results.
It has been a game-changer for my life, reducing my urinary incontinence thanks to birthing three babies, increasing the strength of my orgasms, and helping correct my posture. It’s also led to my interest in learning how to appropriately care for my pelvic floor through better ab and back workouts, the incorporation of stretching and yoga, and even occasionally understanding how to contract my pelvic floor naturally through Kegels.
Remember, there is a right way to perform Kegels.
The right way to do Kegels
Kegel’s are an intricate motion that can be difficult to complete. The foundation for doing a proper kegel includes;
- Pinpointing the right muscles – These happen to be the muscles you would use to stop urination midstream. If you succeed at doing that, you have the correct group of muscles.
- Tighten these muscles, then hold the contraction for 5-8 seconds before gently releasing and resting for five more. Complete ten sets and continue working up to 10 seconds on 10 seconds off ten times.
- Go for reps. Ideally, you’d complete 100 Kegels a day. You could break that up into ten groups of ten 10 and hit them at the top of every hour. But the more Kegels in the proper movement is going to produce the most results.
- Maintain your focus. For best results, focus on tightening only your pelvic floor muscles. Be careful not to flex the muscles in your abdomen, thighs, or buttocks. Avoid holding your breath. Instead, breathe freely during the exercises.
It’s not easy, but worth practicing. Just don’t forget it’s not the only way to strengthen your pelvic floor.
How to Strengthen Your Pelvic Floor – Without Doing Kegels
Here are some additional exercises that work on strengthening the whole of your core.
- The Bridge – To complete, lay flat on your back, knees up, with heels directly under your knees. Lift your butt up off the ground, lifting as high as you can and hold for 3-5 seconds, lower and repeat 10-20 times.
- Wall Squat – With your back against a wall, slowly lower your body down until your hips and knees are at 90-degree angles. Hold for 20-30 seconds, stand and repeat 2-5 times.
- Bird Dog – Start on all fours with your hands directly under your shoulders and your knees directly under your hips. Pull your abs into your spine and expend one arm and the opposite leg. Hold for 5 seconds, slowly lower, and repeat ten reps on alternating sides.
- Pelvic Tucks – Starting on all fours with your hands under your shoulders and knees under your hips, drop your head and tuck your pelvis towards your abdomen. Count two in and two out, repeating 10-20 times.
- Dead Bug Punch – Lie on your back with your arms extended above your shoulders. Bend your hips and knees to a 90-degree angle. Tighten your abs and press your lower back to the floor. Exhale as you slowly extend your left leg toward the floor, bringing your right arm above your head. Slowly return to starting position and repeat on the opposite side. Do ten reps on each side.
Your Kegels aren’t working, but this will.
Like anything, constant movement will always help, but a consistent effort at strengthening your pelvic floor can be seen across your health. It is the grounding force of your body that can reinvent your health. Stay preventative and check out the one device that has single-handedly changed my pelvic floor, The Yarlap.
Use code LIVINGWELL at checkout for $25 off your purchase.
Learn more about the pelvic floor inside this podcast with Heather Jeffcoat.