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Think You Know How to Do Kegels? Think Again!
This entry was posted on 09/11/2016.
We all know that kegels are an important part of every woman's health - preventing pelvic floor disorders like incontinence and prolapse. Just a few minutes each day can keep your pelvic floor healthy. But what if you're not seeing any benefits from your kegels? You could be making one of these 5 mistakes! But don't worry, we can tell you how to fix them...
1: Bearing Down Instead of Lifting
If you're pushing down when you do kegels then they will be making your symptoms worse! Bearing down on your pelvic floor muscles will strain and overstretch them. This can eventually cause a prolapse. If your pelvic floor disorder is getting worse despite doing kegels you need to fix your technique ASAP!
When learning how to do kegels correctly, you should always be lifting your muscles upwards. Imagine that you are trying to stop yourself from peeing mid-flow - that's the correct movement. Sit on a chair and try to lift your vagina and anus away from the seat without moving your pelvis. This will help you to perfect your technique.
2: Not Activating All Your Muscles
The pelvic floor includes the muscles around your vagina, urethra and anus. A good kegel will contract all three of these openings, but many women just squeeze one without realising. It's also common to think that you are doing kegels when you're actually just squeezing your bum muscles. This will give you a lovely bottom but won't do much for your pelvic floor!
Go slowly with your kegels, making gentle contractions to try and isolate your pelvic muscles. If your buttocks start contracting, release and start again. A Kegel8 Ultra 20 Electronic Pelvic Toner will find the right muscles for you, stimulating 90% of your pelvic floor compared to 40% or less with manual exercises.
3: Not Relaxing After You Contract
A complete kegel involves squeezing your muscles and then releasing them. If you don't relax your pelvic floor properly you can cause muscle spasms and fatigue. This can lead to constipation and pelvic pain disorder - not fun conditions to have!
Make sure you're properly releasing your pelvic floor by breathing deeply while you exercise. Breathe in slowly to a count of 5 while you contract, then breathe out to a count of 5 as you relax. Breathing deeply has been shown to activate your muscles much more effectively, helping you to release them more as well.
It's easy to slouch without realising, with many of us never sitting up straight. But this doesn't just cause back pain - it makes your kegels much less effective! Sitting up straight while you exercise will make kegels 24% stronger. When your torso is aligned it can support your insides properly, giving your pelvic floor more room to contract properly.
Make your posture perfect during kegels. Place your bum at the back of your chair and straighten your spine. Try using a posture cushion like our Natural Health Support Wedge Cushion to give you a boost. It's been specially designed with kegels in mind - it even has a space for your Kegel8 probe!
5: Tensing Your Core Muscles
Intentionally contracting your abdominal muscles while you do kegels can strain your pelvic floor, creating muscles spasms, pelvic pain and prolapse. It can be hard to avoid tensing your abs a little bit during kegels; this is fine, but try not to do it on purpose.
If you’re having trouble avoiding your ab muscles, a Kegel8 Biofeedback Pelvic Trainer is a good idea. It ensures that you're just activating your pelvic floor muscles and not your abs. With a little concentration you can avoid all of these mistakes and discover for yourself what makes kegels so great!