Many of us have a complicated relationship with exercise, despite knowing that it can make us healthier and happier. Believe it or not, regular kegel exercise can be just as important as working out any other muscle in your body. Unlike getting a bigger butt or a toned belly, however, strengthening your kegels won’t make you break a sweat… unless it’s getting you all hot and bothered! The following guide will focus on benefits and techniques of kegel exercise for women or female-bodied people, but we will be discussing kegel exercises for men and male-bodied people in a follow-up post. So, guys, keep your eye out.
You’re probably reading this right now because you’ve heard that you can get a tighter vagina by practicing kegels. While there is a lot of truth to this, there are even better sexual benefits to strengthening these muscles, such as better orgasms [xi] when people say something is “better than sex" it’s because they haven’t been exercising their kegels) . Even if you don’t currently have a partner, it’s important to practice self-care, and what better way to do so than mind-blowing masturbation? Furthermore, kegel exercise can alleviate a number of female reproductive health issues that most of us have or will experience at some point in our lifetime. I know, I know, that’s not as fun to talk about, so without further ado, let’s start with the sexy stuff!
There’s a lot of misunderstanding around this concept, so we’re going to have to insert a mini-lesson on the female anatomy here. Think of the muscle tissue of the vaginal wall as a folded accordion. When aroused, the accordion expands in anticipation of a phallus. During childbirth, it expands to squeeze out a baby! This muscle tissue is extremely elastic, like a rubber band, so it’s entirely a myth that promiscuity creates a loose vagina. [i] The tight vagina associated with virginity is more likely caused by clenching the kegel muscles (which surround the vaginal walls), due to anxiety. So if anyone ever complains that you have a loose pussy, it’s probably because they haven’t been giving their previous partners enough foreplay.
However, even a rubber band can get fatigued to a point where it doesn’t snap back completely. In the female body, the vaginal wall can (sometimes, not all the time) lose some elasticity after having several children or, after 30, even after having one child. Age, in general, can also have an effect in some female bodies. [ii]
In the late 1940’s Dr. Arnold Kegel, an American gynecologist, discovered that the pelvic floor muscles can be strengthened through exercise to counter the weakening of the vaginal walls. [iii] The pelvic floor muscles, also known as the PC muscle (pubococcygeus if you’re an overachiever) is the hammock of tissue that stretches from the pubic bone to the tail bone, surrounding the rectum, vagina, and urethra in the process. [iv] Thus the pelvic floor muscles have become more commonly referred to as the kegel muscles.
So while you can’t "tighten" your vagina, you can strengthen your kegels to offer more control and a stronger grip. [v] You probably don’t need to be prompted to imagine how that will feel during sex. And your partner will likely rejoice when you both discover a whole new meaning to cock milking, as you squeeze on his penis with your PC muscles and clamp down like a vice. Both you and your partner will be able to appreciate what your pussy is capable of with consistent training!
Whether you’re looking for a little extra help to get dripping wet or you feel like you’ve been wrung out and left to dry like a sponge, kegel exercise is an effective way to increase your body’s production of lubrication. If your sex drive is waning, this completely natural way to increase wetness can also trigger arousal. [vi]
Vaginal dryness, otherwise known as atrophic vaginitis, is an unfortunate but common condition that can afflict women of all ages. It’s most known to affect females transitioning into and through menopause as they experience a decrease in estrogen levels, but a dry vagina can also be the result of childbirth, breastfeeding, mental and physical health issues, and a number of medications and treatments. [vii]
Without a wet vagina, you may experience a negative impact on your sex life as intercourse becomes painful, which can lead to unhappiness in your relationships or even with your personal quality of life. While there are estrogen creams and vaginal moisturizers that can help, they are often expensive and/or need to be prescribed by a doctor. A good lube can be a convenient and inexpensive way to enjoy sex on your own or with a partner again, but many agree that nothing compares to your own natural lubricant. [viii]
Regular kegel exercise increases blood circulation to the vagina, keeping the muscle tissue healthy and encouraging lubrication. [ix] It’s not like you’ll be able to turn it on like a faucet—foreplay is still going to be an important part of sex with a partner (nothing to complain about there). But an increase in your production of lubrication can definitely make sex more comfortable and enjoyable.
It's no secret that the female orgasm can be a lot harder to come by in comparison to the male orgasm. Anorgamsia, or an inability to orgasm can be caused by a number of physical and mental factors, and can also be situational. You might only be able to orgasm with a partner during oral sex. You might only be able to orgasm during masturbation. You might not be able to orgasm at all! [x]
It can be a good idea to talk to a doctor if you're experiencing anorgamsia, but good ol' Dr. Kegel made an incredible, but accidental discovery while he was conducting his research. An astounding number of his female patients, instructed to practice kegel exercise for health issues, found that they were experiencing increased sensation during sex! [xi]
Again, with exercise comes increased blood flow to the area, which in turn heightens sensitivity, similar to how stimulating the penis draws blood into it, thus making it more sensitive. Kegel exercise can have this effect in the female body, whether you practice regular kegel exercises or just hype yourself prior to sex (I believe those big guys at the gym refer to this as "getting swoll"). [xii]
But even those lucky ladies who have no trouble cumming with their partner can benefit from a more sensitive vagina. The majority of women who orgasm during sex are having their clitoris stimulated either externally or internally (the clit has internal roots that wrap around the vagina), but according to Sex Therapist Dr. Laura Berman "The orgasm is an intense contraction, and a stronger pelvic floor can definitely intensify that, and even make it easier to have G-spot orgasms." [xiii] And if you aren't doing it already, why not check one more thing off the list and experience a squirting orgasm (female ejaculation)? [xiv]
With stronger Kegel muscles and more sensitive vaginal walls, you can have a shaking orgasm, a violent orgasm, or the best orgasm of your life. Every. Single. Time.