- Introduction* The Pelvic Floor Muscles are a group of muscles that help support the uterus, bowel and bladder and the passages that lead out of the body - the vagina from the uterus, the anus from the bowel and the urethra from the bladder. Pelvic Floor Muscle Exercises can help to maintain and improve bladder control and sexual enjoyment.
- About* The Pelvic Floor Muscles can weaken as a result of pregnancy and childbirth, constipation, frequent heavy lifting, being overweight, change in hormone levels at menopause or lack of general exercise. This can lead to urinary incontinence in women and men and vaginal weakness in women.
If you are pregnant, performing Pelvic Floor Muscle Exercises during your pregnancy and after delivery will help keep these muscles firm and toned. At menopause, the Pelvic Floor Muscles may weaken, so it will help if you have strengthened them in the years leading up to menopuase.
Exercise 1. WOMEN : Slowly tighten, lift and draw in the pelvic floor muscles and hold to a count of 10. Rest for 10 seconds and repeat again. At first, you may not be able to hold the muscles for this long, so slowly build up to a 10-second hold over several weeks. Exercise 2. Quickly tighten, lift up and let the muscles go.
Exercise 1. MEN : Slowly tighten the muscles around your anus and hold to a count of 10. Rest for 10 seconds and repeat again. At first, you may not be able to hold the muscles for this long, so slowly build up to a 10-second hold over several weeks. Do three sets of 10 contractions every day. Exercise 2. Quickly tighten, lift up and let the muscles go.
The exercises should be done for 5 minutes twice a day.
Try to relax all the other muscles except the pelvic floor muscles. Do not bear down or squeeze your thigh, back or abdominal muscles. Breathe slowly and deeply. Once you are comfortable with these exercises, you can work the muscles more by doing them with your knees apart.Locating and tightening the right muscles It is important that you find and tighten the right muscles from the start. Imagine that you need to hold back gas. Squeeze and lift the rectal area in men (and vaginal area in women) without tightening the bottocks or stomach. Check yourself in a mirror or place your hands on your abdomen and buttocks to make sure that your stomach, thighs or buttocks do not move. You can also place a finger in your vagina and squeeze around it - you will feel pressure around your finger when you are using the correct muscle. Your Doctor or Nurse can explain the correct way to perform these exercises.