How to do a Kegel for Newbies
There are tons of articles out there that talk about how you can do Kegels while waiting in line at the grocery store, while driving car, or while sitting at your office desk. Yup, even we have been guilty of writing those types of articles. We talk about doing Kegels in these various places because we want to emphasize the fact that adding Kegels and other exercises for your pelvic floor muscles does NOT have to be difficult, complicated, or impossible. We try to emphasize that Kegels can be done whenever you have a spare minute or two, with the goal of encouraging more women to do Kegels for their pelvic health.
But here’s the thing … for the woman who has never done Kegels or the woman who is not doing a Kegel correctly, trying to do these exercises while sitting in a car or standing in the grocery line is going to be next to impossible. For these women, it is best to start doing Kegels from positions of less resistance, such as lying down or lying on her side. If you think about it, doing Kegels in these positions make sense. After all, in both sitting and standing positions gravity exerts a strong downward pull on everything, including the pelvic floor muscles. Since the goal of Kegels is to pull the pelvic floor muscles upward and inward, any woman in a sitting or standing position has to work against the force of gravity … which is no small force! If a woman has never done Kegels or has difficulty doing Kegels, fighting gravity while doing these exercises just doesn’t make sense!
Best Positions for Pelvic Floor Muscle Exercises
Now that we’ve established that doing pelvic floor muscle exercises, such as Kegels, while sitting or standing is not ideal for beginners or women struggling with these exercises, let’s talk about strong positions for these women. The best positions for these women to start practicing Kegels are supine and side-lying. In regular human words, supine and side-lying mean this:
- Supine: This just means that you lie on your back with your legs stretched out in a relaxed position (you can do this on your bed or on the floor, whichever is most comfortable for you)
- Side-Lying: As the name implies, you lie on your side with your legs bent at a relaxed and comfortable angle (again, on the bed or floor)
With either of these positions, feel free to use a pillow to support your neck if necessary (our goal is your pelvic health, not to give you a pain in the neck!). The side-lying position offers the least resistance, but can also be a bit awkward for some women. Try both positions and see which one seems more comfortable for you. In fact, you might try both positions and try to do a Kegel contraction in both. Also remember that if you want to troubleshoot your Kegels, you’ll need to be able to place one hand between your legs.
We suggest that you try doing Kegels in the supine position first. If you continue to have trouble doing a correct Kegel, then move to the side-lying position and try the contractions again there. If you are new to doing Kegels or are not sure you are doing them correctly, please check this post to test yourself. If you continue having trouble doing a correct Kegel contraction in either the supine or side-lying positions, then seek the help of a specialist in women’s pelvic health.