Pelvic Floor Strengthening
The pelvic floor is one of the most important muscles in the body, however it is largely overlooked in exercise and healthcare activities. The strength of the pelvic floor directly impacts sexual response in both men and women, including the ease of reaching orgasm, the intensity of orgasm, and the ability to learn to control ejaculation in men. In sexual satisfaction and functioning, pelvic floor exercises are a great addition to other interventions your Therapist will likely use in the treatment of your individual plan. There are no negative consequences of a strong pelvic floor, so why not get started straight away?
The pelvic floor is a large hammock of muscles and tissue that runs between the pubic bone at the front of your body (just under your underwear line), through to the tailbone at the base of the spine. It is responsible for providing support to the bladder, bowel and uterus (in women). If you imagine right now that you are trying to stop the flow of urine, the muscle you feel contracting is your pelvic floor. In it’s simplest form, contracting and releasing your pelvic floor (imagine starting then stopping the flow of urine) is a great place to start on your pelvic floor journey. Start by contracting for 4 seconds then releasing for 4 seconds, repeating 20 times. The great thing about this exercise is that because it’s not visible, you can do it on the bus, in the shower, or even in your 9am meeting!
Besides the advantages of increased orgasm frequency and intensity for women, the stronger the pelvic floor muscle, the less chances of complicated and painful pregnancy and childbirth, and the less chance of incontinence after birth or as a result of aging. Getting into the habit of completing pelvic floor exercises at any age will benefit when it comes to bladder and bowel control, sexual satisfaction, intensity of orgasm, pregnancy and childbirth. There are no negative consequences of having strong pelvic floor muscles!
Specifically looking at pregnancy, completing pelvic floor exercises before, during and after pregnancy and childbirth can reduce the risk of incontinence, speed the process of recovery after childbirth, and tighten muscles. This tightening of muscles reduces the risk of urine leaking when coughing, sneezing, laughing or playing sport, which is extremely common in those who are pregnant, new mothers and older women. This is also true of bowel incontinence and prolapse (where your pelvic organs drop or feel like they are about to fall out).
Not to keep banging on about it, but a strong pelvic floor muscle can increase the frequency and intensity of orgasms. This is because an orgasm is essentially the involuntary contracting and releasing of the pelvic floor muscle, uterus and genitals. It’s not surprising that the stronger the muscles in this area, the greater the release when they contract and release rhythmically! This is great for people of all ages, and in older women who have noticed it is becoming harder to reach orgasm than it used to be, pelvic floor exercises can help with this.
For men, strengthening the pelvic floor muscle can reduce bladder and bowel incontinence which generally comes with aging or following prostate surgeries. Not only this, but there is mounting evidence to suggest pelvic floor exercises are effective in learning how to control ejaculation, reducing the instances of premature ejaculation for the one in five men who are affected by this.
A strong pelvic floor muscle also improves the quality of erections and intensity of orgasm. Put simply, this is because the pelvic floor assists in trapping blood in the penis and maintaining an erection. Interventions that include floor exercises as well as mindfulness and breathing techniques can allow men to be multi-orgasmic, and to separate their orgasm from ejaculation through control of the pelvic floor muscles.
These same techniques can be used to control erection and ejaculation and prevent concerns relating to erectile dysfunction and premature ejaculation. It is worth noting that this is one of many interventions that would be used in the treatment of these concerns during therapy sessions. In saying this, it will not hurt to start pelvic floor exercises before scheduling an appointment with a Good Vibes Therapist.