Ladies how many of you are taking time to exercise your pelvic muscles? These muscles might not seem very important to your now, especially if you are younger, but let me tell you that doing the Kegel exercise now will benefit you into your 80s and 90s. There are muscle fibers, within the pelvic muscles, which form a sphincter mechanism around the base of the bladder enabling the bladder to retain urine even when it is full. When the muscle is voluntarily relaxed urine is allowed to be released, while voluntary contraction stops the flow. If the integrity of these muscle fibers is compromised from being traumatized, stretched, or torn during childbirth, such things as sneezing, coughing, or laughing can result in a dribble or even a gush of urine which cannot be controlled. This is known as stress incontinence. Kegel exercises can help to tonify the pelvic muscles and help to decrease stress incontinence, while also increasing sexual pleasure and strengthen orgasms. The vaginal sphincter is responsible for the clasping action of the vagina around the penis during intercourse as well as being a muscle involved in the orgasm.

Kegel exercises are also indicated for women before and after child birth. During pregnancy the muscles of the pelvic floor often become stretched. These muscles help to support the organs in the pelvis. Maintaining muscle tone helps hold the organs in place. A cystocele is when the bladder herniates or pouches out into the vagina following tissue injury. A rectocele is a similar condition involving the rectum rather than the bladder. Both of these along with uterine prolapse can be potentially avoided by doing daily Kegel exercises. These exercises can be done anywhere and anytime - standing, sitting or lying down.

How to do Kegel exercise? 
The action of the exercise is to contract the muscle in the pelvic region. It will feel as though you are trying to draw the vagina and the anus up into the pelvis. To get a sense of what muscles you should be contracting, stop your urine flow midstream and feel which muscles you are using to perform that action. Once you figure out what muscle to be contracting you want to hold the contraction for 5 seconds. You will repeat this contraction/hold for 50 to 100 times a day. If 50 seems like a lot initial build up to 50 and then build up to doing 100 per day. They can be divided into several sets to be done throughout the day, or done all at once. In addition, whenever urinating, stop and start the flow of urine several times. This will strengthen the muscle at the neck of the bladder thereby preventing the leakage of urine.

Ladies have fun with the Kegel exercise; encourage your friends and loved one to strength their pelvic muscles.