5 Benefits Of Kegel Exercises During Pregnancy

5 Benefits Of Kegel Exercises During Pregnancy

2 Mar 2022 | 4 min Read

Sayani Basu

Author | 607 Articles

Kegel exercises or Kegels are clench-and-release exercises that help to strengthen and train the pelvic floor, improve bowel control, and treat bladder problems.

These exercises train the pelvic floor, which is made up of muscles and tissues and form a sling, to keep the organs in place. This reduces the risk of developing a weak pelvic floor that could cause urinary incontinence (leaking of urine), as well as bowel issues.

While these exercises are beneficial to all, Kegels are especially useful to expecting mothers and can be performed during pregnancy as well as postpartum, post advise from the doctor.

What Are Kegel Exercises?

Kegel exercises are an easy way to strengthen the pelvic floor muscles. They involve squeezing and relaxing muscles in the pelvic and genital areas.

These muscles support the pelvic organs, including the bladder, uterus, small intestine and rectum.

Pregnancy and Kegel Exercises

Kegel or pelvic floor exercises are quite beneficial, especially during delivery. If done correctly, they help keep the bladder, rectum and uterus in place, and also keep urine from leaking.

5 Benefits of Kegel Exercises During Pregnancy

As shared, Kegel exercises can improve and maintain your bladder and bowel control by increasing the strength, endurance and correct function of these important muscles.

Here’s how you can benefit by adding Kegel exercises to your daily fitness routine:

  • Improved bladder control: Kegels can help prevent conditions like urinary incontinence as it strengthens pelvic muscles, which in turn supports pelvic organs.
  • Reduced risk of fecal incontinence: Many women experience postpartum fecal incontinence, a condition that causes you to leak stool before you make it to the bathroom. Kegels can help strengthen the rectal muscles and help prevent such a condition.
  • Shorter labour: Research suggests that women who practice Kegel exercises may have a slightly shorter labour and a fast post-birth recovery.
  • More enjoyable sex: Kegels boost your sexual health and pleasure too. It can help you reach orgasm more easily.
  • Heals perineal tissues: Kegels help heal perineal tissues that get stretched during vaginal birth.   

How to Practice Kegel Exercises?

Kegel exercise is easy to do. Here are some of the ways:

  • Find the right muscles: You can insert a clean finger into your vagina. Squeeze the muscles you would use to hold in gas. If you feel a tightening around your finger, you’re on track. 

The muscles you’re tightening are the same ones you’ll want to contract when you practice Kegels. If you are not sure, your healthcare provider can help you locate the right muscles.

Getting comfortable with the right clothes while doing kegels during pregnancy is important. | Image Source: freepik
  • Get comfortable: At first, it might be easy for you to practice lying down. Later on, you’ll be able to do Kegels lying down, standing, or even while sitting.
  • Squeeze the pelvic floor muscles, relax, and repeat: You can squeeze your pelvic floor muscles and hold for several seconds. Relax for a few seconds and repeat.
  • Increase the intensity as your muscles get stronger: You can start small and gradually increase the number of repetitions, duration of each squeeze and the frequency of daily practice sessions as the muscles get stronger.

Dos and Don’ts of Kegel Exercise

  1. It is advisable not to do Kegels while peeing. This may prevent your bladder from fully emptying.
  2. You must not strain or hold your breath and keep your abdominal, buttock, and thigh muscles relaxed.
  3. You can feel some soreness around the pelvic area. However, if you feel pain, it is advisable to stop and talk to your doctor.

Kegel Exercises: Benefitial for Physical and Mental State

It’s never too early to start doing kegel exercises. | Image Source: freepik

It’s never too early to start doing Kegel exercises. But the more regularly you practice them throughout your pregnancy, the greater shall be the benefits.

You can restart your Kegel exercises immediately after your delivery.

Are there any Kegel Apps?

There are several kegel apps for Android and iOS like Magic Kegel, Kegel Trainer, Fitonomy, Squeezy and Mommymove. These apps take you through different Kegel exercises and help you set goals and track your progress. Some apps also give you daily reminders ensuring you do not miss on kegels.

If done regularly and correctly, your bladder control will improve within a few months. If you want to keep your pelvic muscles in shape, healthcare practitioners recommend making them a lifelong habit.



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