The Better Way: Kegels on the Bus
Ride the Rocket to a Better Sex Life
Just as physical fitness is vital to our overall health, sexual fitness is also important for everyone’s physical and emotional well-being. The best-known sexual exercises are often called “Kegels “ and have traditionally been recommended for women to support the birthing process and recovery after childbirth. However these exercises of the pelvic floor are healthy for people of all genders and life stages. Also known as PuboCoccygeus (PC) muscles, they are a hammock of muscles that extend from the pubic bone (P) to the coccyx (C) or tailbone. They hold in our pee (especially when we sneeze or jump on the trampoline). For women, strong PC muscles can help to prevent urinary or vaginal prolapse. For men, stronger muscles provide better control over erections.
The exciting benefit for everyone is that these are also the muscles that contract during an orgasm. The stronger the PC muscles, the easier and more explosive the orgasm. In addition, since our erectile tissue is sandwiched between those muscles, each squeeze also delivers a small jolt of pleasure: some added incentive to keep in shape! Other advantages include increased blood flow into the pelvic region which is effective for boosting sexual desire and assistance in decreasing pain for some who experience vaginal discomfort during intercourse.
Toning our pelvic muscles is easier than going to the gym. We can exercise them anytime, anywhere: on the bus, on the couch watching TV, or while washing the dishes. One simple way to isolate these muscles is to stop the flow of urine mid-stream the next time you are in the bathroom.-those are the PC muscles. Contract those same muscles in 5 second intervals: slowly squeeze for 5 seconds then relax for 5 seconds. Start with ten sets of 5 squeeze/5 relax three times a day. Gradually increase the number of repetitions per set and frequency of each set at a pace that feels comfortable for you (no need to race to the Kegel Olympics!) until you are squeezing a total of 300 times per day. To add some variety, you can speed up some of the squeezes in faster sequence, one second squeeze and one second relax, similar to the pace of a car’s turn signals flashing.
As you practice and get stronger, one important detail is to pay attention to the muscles you engage when you do your pelvic floor squeezes. If you notice that you are also contracting your abdomen, buttocks and/ or thighs, this means that your PC muscles are weak and borrowing strength from the neighbouring muscle groups. Focus on squeezing just your pelvic floor, which gets easier with practice. The goal is to improve your strength so that you are able to isolate just the PC muscles while doing multiple repetitions.
The beauty of this workout is that it can be done anywhere, anytime, without equipment (and without anyone else knowing). Many folks however like to focus on something that can offer some concentration and resistance. Men can use a wet washcloth or towel draped over their erection in order to add weight. The greater the weight the greater the resistance, and the faster the muscles strengthen. As in all forms of weight training however, start light and increase gradually. Women can squeeze against anything inside their vagina (including a finger or a sex toy). A popular option that allows women to still do the exercises anytime, anywhere is vaginal exercise balls. They fit one or two at a time inside the vagina and can be worn around for several hours. Every time the body moves the balls generate a gentle sensation. This sensation serves as both a reminder to squeeze several times during the day as well as some gentle pleasure to boost desire. Since many women experience low desire, Kegels are a fabulous pump that fuel the flames of sexual arousal and desire.
Finally, once you are having sex- with someone else or on your own- squeeze your PC muscles while you are feeling sexual pleasure. You will feel greater sensations with more explosive orgasms, especially after a few weeks of toning your PC muscles. For those with a male partner, stronger PC muscles can lead to a whole new sexual experience for both of you when you squeeze and relax against his penis during intercourse. Whatever your reasons, however you like to do them, Kegel exercises feel great in the moment and offer long-term health and pleasure benefits that require little time, minimal equipment and just a little attention. See you on the bus!
Carlyle Jansen is the founder of Good For Her, a sexuality s hop and workshop centre in Toronto. If you hae questions or comments she can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or go online to goodforher.com