The importance of working the pelvic floor for young people and athletes: three different ways to do it

That he pelvic floor It is one of the most important areas to work for women (be careful, it is also for men!) we know about it. We have all heard about Kegel exercises, the most famous when it comes to keeping the muscles of this area toned, but there are more exercises that we can do and that will benefit us greatly in different facets of our lives.

Last Wednesday we were at the presentation of Chilly, the well-known brand of intimate hygiene soaps. After a 45-minute training we could enjoy a pleasant chat with the gynecologist Belén Gómez García, who told us about the different ways of working the pelvic floor and why it is especially important in the case of young women and athletes.

Why should my pelvic floor work?

The pelvic floor musculature is responsible for supporting organs such as the urethra, bladder and uterus. To locate it in our body we can Think of our middle area as a large wicker basket. The front part of the basket would correspond to the abdominal rectum, the sides of the basket with the oblique muscles of the abdomen, the back part with the lumbar area, the lid or upper part would correspond to the diaphragm and, finally, the base of the basket would be the pelvic floor.

If the base of the basket (the pelvic floor musculature) is not toned, we run the risk that the organs that rest on it do not function properly and may suffer urinary incontinence or even back pains, since the pelvic floor muscles also collaborate in giving stability to our spine and our pelvis.

The pelvic floor may be weakened by the age, by high impact sports like running and at some specific moments in the life of women like pregnancy or menopause. Working the pelvic floor with the appropriate complementary exercises will allow us to enjoy better integral health.

How can we work the pelvic floor?

Kegel exercises

The best known method for working the pelvic floor muscles are Kegel exercises, which are named after the gynecologist who gave them popularity as early as the 1940s. They consist of pubocoxygeal muscle contraction and, for a first approach to them, it is convenient that we consult with our gynecologist or a physiotherapist.

Being a muscle that is inside our body (we cannot identify it with the naked eye, as we can do with the biceps for example) it is important that we know how to locate it. A good idea to do so is to try retain urine when we go to the bathroom: The muscle to exercise is what we notice that is contracted when we do this. It is important that this "trick" is only used to locate the muscle at the beginning, because if the retention of urine is not beneficial for us.

Kegel exercises consist of contractions of different intensity and duration of the pelvic floor musculature, combined with a proper breathing sequence that facilitates these movements. In the video that accompanies these lines you can see a demonstration.

Hypopressive abs

In our day to day we spend many hours sitting and in a flexion position of the spine; That is why we should not abuse traditional abdominal exercises, such as abdominal crunch, with which we accentuate this posture and maintain it for even longer.

As a way to complement abdominal work we can opt for Hipopressive abs: Instead of putting more pressure on our middle area, the hypopressives remove the pressure from this area, allowing us to work the inner wall of the abdominal rectum and the deep musculature of the abdomen.

The best thing to learn to perform them well is go to a professional trained in this area that can teach us the different positions, how the breathing should be in each of them, etc.

Chinese balls

LELO Luna Beads Chinese balls (54.90 euros)

Although there are many people who only identify them as a sex toy, the truth is that Chinese balls can be very beneficial for the health of our pelvic floor. It is recommended to use them when we already have the somewhat toned muscles, after having worked with Kegel exercises, since what we are going to do is include a weight that makes the exercises a bit more difficult.

exist different types of chinese balls in the market: We can find them from a unit or those that come in pairs, and there are also different weights (ideally, start with small balls and gradually increase the weight). The Chinese balls (also called "geisha balls") are spheres that contain a small ball inside: this little ball inside collides with the walls of the large one when we are moving, and this vibration causes a involuntary contraction of the muscles of the vaginal wall and pelvic floor, which is surrounding her.

The first few times we can use the Chinese balls without moving too much, but the ideal is to make a normal life with them on. It is not necessary (or optimal) that we wear them for a long time: with about 15 minutes a day is more than enough.

The benefits of working the pelvic floor

Having a well-toned pelvic floor can help us in many aspects of our life, some specific (such as, for example, at the time of delivery) and other newspapers. The risk of suffering urinary incontinence in women with a toned pelvic floor, and we talk about women of all ages, it is much smaller.

Too will improve our sex life: Knowing how to voluntarily contract the muscles of the vaginal wall, with different intensity or rhythm, helps both us and our partners to have full and satisfactory sex.