Simple, Risk-free, and Painless
- Sit on the toilet and place one finger in your vagina. Squeeze your finger with your vaginal muscle. You should be able to feel the muscle tighten around your finger.
- While urinating, stop the flow of urine midstream by contracting your pelvic floor muscles. Only do this to learn what the muscles feel like. Do not do this repeatedly.
- Imagine that a tampon is going to fall out of your vagina. Tighten your pelvic muscles in order to hang onto it.
- Imagine that you are trying hard not to urinate or pass gas. Squeeze those muscles.
Doing the Exercises
- Do not do these exercises while urinating. It can interrupt the flow of urine which may lead to other problems.
- Empty your bladder before beginning the exercises.
- Keep your abdominal and thigh muscles relaxed.
- Draw the muscles up and in. Do not strain down with your abdomen.
- Breathe while holding the muscles contracted.
- Try to get the maximum tightening with each muscle contraction.
- Try contracting the muscles while you are in different positions. Try it while you are standing, sitting, lying, and with your feet together and apart.
How to do Kegel Exercises
- Lie on the floor. Choose a place that is comfortable, such as in your bedroom.
- Find your pelvic floor muscles. Again, to do this pretend you are trying to stop urinating or passing gas.
- Squeeze your pelvic floor muscles, hold, and count to three.
- Relax for a count of three.
- Squeeze again for three counts, then relax for three counts. Do this 10-15 times.
Making Kegel Exercises a Habit
- Try to schedule your Kegel exercises at the same time every day, such as during a regular TV show, while you do the dishes, or before you go to bed.
- Find a way to remind yourself to do your Kegel exercises. For example, you could put a note or sign on your mirror or refrigerator.
- Reward yourself for each day that you do your Kegel exercises. For example, you could put a gold star on your calendar.
- You may forget to do your exercises for a few days. It is common to have a few slips when you are trying to make any new change. Do not get discouraged. Just get back to your exercise program.
- Chart your progress on a daily or weekly basis. Eventually, you should begin to notice that you are “leaking” urine less frequently or in smaller amounts than before.
National Library of Medicine http://www.nlm.nih.gov/
Society of Gynecological Surgeons http://www.sgsonline.org/
Health Canada http://www.hc-sc.gc.ca/index%5Fe.html/
Women's Health Matters http://www.womenshealthmatters.ca/
Urinary Incontinence—Female. EBSCO Health Library website. Available at: http://www.ebscohost.com/healthLibrary/. Updated September 27, 2012. Accessed November 28, 2012.
Jelovsek FR. How to do pelvic floor muscle exercises (Kegel’s). Society of Gynecological Surgeons Surgeons website. Available at: http://www.sgsonline.org/sgsinc/patiented/educate%5Farticles/edpi002.htm. Accessed on November 28, 2012.
Kegel Exercise Tips. National Kidney and Urologic Diseases Information Clearinghouse website. Available at: http://kidney.niddk.nih.gov/kudiseases/pubs/bcw%5Fez/insertC.aspx. Updated March 28, 2012. Accessed November 28, 2012.
Urinary Incontinence in Women. EBSCO DynaMed website. Available at: http://www.ebscohost.com/dynamed/what.php. Updated November 27, 2012. Accessed November 28, 2012.
- Reviewer: Brian Randall, MD
- Review Date: 11/2012 -
- Update Date: 11/18/2012 -