Planks are perfect for strengthening the core, sit-ups work well for abs while pus-ups are recommended by the delts. However, is there any exercise that can help you in strengthening your pelvic floor? Kegel exercise!
You might think that Kegel exercise for women only but it is truly a misconception. It is a fact that you feel more confident and a lot stronger when you are lifting weights. Kegel exercises for menwork in the same manner and help you in strengthening those muscles in your body that are not visible to you.
What Are Kegel Exercises?
In the late 1940s, Dr. Arnold Kegel, a gynecologist in California created the Kegel exercises for women to help them in controlling the incontinence issue they suffered after childbirth. Further research on the Kegel exercises revealed that they are extremely helpful in minimizing pelvic pain suffered during intercourse as well as in preventing prolapse as well.
The pubococcygeus or PC muscles are targeted by the Kegel exercises for men. These muscles are present in both men and women and are responsible for providing support to the bowel, bladder and urethra which are all pelvic organs.
Young people usually have strong and taut PC muscles that keep the pelvic organs in place and assist in sexual function and bladder control. They lose efficiency and strength due to stretching and aging. Kegel exercises provide these muscles the workout they require to get strengthened.
Benefits of Kegel Exercises for Men
Urinary continence in men can be controlled by Kegel exercises. Moreover, they also lower the urge to void as well. Kegels for men have also been known to boost the erection time period of some men who are suffering from issues like premature ejaculation and sexual dysfunction. Thus, these exercises can uplift a man’s quality of life.
Patients who are suffering from diabetes or obesity or have undergone prostate surgery like radical prostatectomy in the past are likely to have a weak pelvic floor. Kegels can prove to be a great exercise for them. Kegel exercises are not recommended solely for increasing penis size.
Guidelines for Doing Kegel Exercises for Men
Pelvic floor muscle training exercises are performed in almost the same manner by both men and women. However, finding these muscles is the critical thing. Although it is possible for you to see the flexing of your arm muscles when lifting a weight, the same cannot be said for the PC muscles.
- Locate the PC muscles
If you want to identify the PC muscles all you have to do is to stop passing urine during midstream. When you contract the pelvic muscles while standing in front of the mirror, you will see your testicles rising and the penis’s base moving close to the abdomen. You can also locate the PC muscles by imaging the set of muscles that you will have to tighten if you want to stop expelling gas. These are the same muscles that are required for doing Kegels.
- Master your technique
Having identified your pelvic floor muscles, it is time for you to lie on your back and have your knees bent and apart after emptying your bladder. For a period of three seconds, tighten your pelvic floor muscles and then let them relax for three seconds. Without overdoing it, do this continuously a few times. Once your muscles have strengthened, you can perform the Kegel exercises for menwhile walking, sitting or standing.
- Keep yourself focused
If you want to get the best results from the Kegel exercises, then you must focus on tightening your pelvic floor muscles while performing them. It is important to not flex the muscles in the buttocks, abdomen or thighs and also to breathe as freely as possible during the exercises.
- Repeat thrice a day
Make it your aim to perform at least three sets of the exercises in a day with each set having 10 repetitions.
Simple Kegel Exercises for Men to Try
- Just like you practice flexing the abdominal muscles for toning your torso; it is best to practice flexion of PC muscles, too. Imagine stopping the urine stream and hold the position for up to 20 seconds before releasing. It is one of the simplest Kegel exercise for menthat can be repeated trice in a day for up to 20 times.
- Try to change the basic exercise slightly. For instance, practice contracting the muscles as tightly as you can, much like when you are holding a bowel movement. Hold this position for up to 20 seconds and then repeat again after releasing. You can try contracting and releasing the muscles slowly or quickly many times in succession as well.
- A difficult variation of the Kegel exercise is to contract the PC muscles as tightly as possible and then hold it. Let the muscles to remain clenched for a pre-set time duration and then release. With practice the muscle will become stronger and the holding time will increase. Perform 3 repetitions of this exercise 4 times a week.
Tips to Follow When Doing Kegel Exercises for Men
Make It Regular
Include the Kegel exercise in your daily routine. Perform them while doing everyday tasks like brushing teeth or having a bowel movement or while you urinate. Try to tighten the muscles of the pelvic floor while performing an activity or just before it, especially if it puts pressure on the abdomen like coughing, sneezing, heavy lifting or laughing. Delay ejaculation or maintain erection by tightening the PC muscles during sex in a rhythmical manner.
Seek Help If Necessary
Don’t feel shy in asking help if you are finding it hard to perform Kegel exercises for men. Your physician can provide you good advice on how to isolate the correct muscles and what to do to strengthen them. Biofeedback training can prove to be helpful in some cases too. In this training, the doctor inserts a small probe in the rectum and asks you to tighten your PC muscles. The activity of the PC muscles is measured and displayed on a monitor.
Be patient as the results of the exercise might take some time to appear. Doing Kegels thrice a day would ensure that your bladder control improves within 3-6 weeks. To notice improvements, try to keep a record of the urine leakage on a daily basis. If no change occurs in a month then you might have located the wrong muscles for the Kegels. Call your urologist or doctor and ask them for tips on how to successfully find and exercise the PC muscles.