Yes, that’s right! Men have pelvic floors too.
It’s common knowledge amongst women, that if we don’t exercise our pelvic floor muscles they will become weak and can lead to some embarrassing leaks as we mature, especially when we laugh, sneeze or cough. Standard ante-natal advice tells us to exercise these muscles before and after childbirth to tone our pelvic floor muscles to keep ourselves honeymoon fresh. However, men are rarely given any advice about these exercises.
Men have the same pelvic floor muscles which run from the tailbone to where the penis attaches to the pubic bone. Because it connects the front, the back and all the important bits inside, it stands to reason that strengthening it will increase control and sensation in the entire genital area.
In 1952, Arnold Kegal devised some simple exercises as a method for increasing genital strength. The exercises are now often referred to as Kegal exercises or Kegals. During his research into ways to help people with incontinence, he found that the stopping and starting of the flow of urine was very beneficial for women whose muscles had weakened post-pregnancy. What Dr Kegal didn’t anticipate, was the number of patients who would then report that their vaginal muscles had become stronger, resulting in increased sexual arousal during intercourse and better orgasms.
If you don’t use it you lose it, and strength in any muscle that doesn’t get used is no different. Regular Kegal exercises not only prevent the consequences of poor muscle tone, like urinary incontinence, but help to increase vaginal and penile strength. Kegals increase sensitivity and vaginal lubrication, they can intensify orgasms, improve erections and assist in ejaculatory control.
Steps to get you on your ‘Kegal’ way:
1. Find your pelvic floor
First find out where your pelvic floor muscles are by stopping your flow of urine mid-stream. This will require you to pull up/squeeze/tighten your anus in, as if trying not to pass wind and doing the same with your urethra as if trying not to wee at the same time. It should feel as if you are lifting it up and squeezing it from inside. Women should feel it in the vagina and men should feel it in the anus. Be sure not to tighten the muscles in the chest, abdomen, thighs or buttocks.
Word of warning! Now you know where the muscle are and what it feels like to contract them, you are well on your way. A word of warning, once you have learnt to do your Kegal exercises don’t continue to do them whilst you’re urinating as this can eventually weaken the pelvic floor and can cause bladder problems.
With an empty bladder, contract or squeeze the pelvic floor muscles and hold for the count of 3-8 seconds before releasing slowly, then count to 10 and repeat the process, ensuring that each time the contraction is strong, slow and controlled.
3. Increase your sets
Once you’re in the swing, increase your sets of Kegals to 10 sets at least 3 times per day. It may take some time to reach this, but be patient and do whatever you can manage until you’ve reached this level
4. Get into a routine
Try and get into a routine, for example, one set when you’re brushing your teeth, one set when you’re on the train coming home from work and another when you take your evening shower. Get the picture? You don’t have to take any time out of your day for this important part of your fitness regime.
There are Apps you can download on your phone which will offer you some variety on your Kegal exercises and send you reminders to do them; Search Kegal Exercises.
So guys (and girls) tell your friends and family, look after your sexual health and get squeezing!!