SheBop is a local, woman-owned adult boutique here in Portland that focuses on educating and creating a safe, fun environment for people of all genders and orientations. We love them for their unwavering dedication to healthy & safe sexuality and women’s rights, and their exceptional knowledge. Read on to discover why the PC muscles are important and how to strengthen them!
Of all the muscles that comprise the pelvic floor, the pubococcygeus muscles are probably the most famous. The pubococcygeus muscles (more well-known as the PC muscles) run from the pubic bone to the tailbone, and form a sort of figure eight around the genitals. All people have PC muscles, and these muscles are instrumental in sexual response — in fact, they involuntarily contract during orgasm, and help to propel ejaculate.
In the forties, a gynecologist named Dr. Arnold Kegel developed the idea of exercising the PC muscles, and the concept of kegel exercises was born. Although Kegel was primarily focused on treating urinary incontinence, one of his papers did mention off-handedly that “sexual appreciation can be increased by restoring function of the pubococcygeus.” Indeed, kegel exercises are now largely associated with sexuality, and for good reason — doing them regularly has many sexual benefits.
Kegel exercise generally consists of voluntarily and repetitively contracting and relaxing the PC muscles. Many associate kegel exercise with a tighter vagina, but that is just one perk of toned PC muscles. Regular kegel exercise can have a variety of pleasurable effects, such as heightened sexual sensitivity, stronger orgasms, and greater response to G-spot stimulation. The more the PC muscles are toned, the more they can relax, so kegels are great for those wanting to have anal sex, or for anyone experiencing difficulty with penetration. With kegel practice and repetition, some female-bodied people can even learn to ejaculate/squirt.
For male-bodied people, toned PC muscles can result in improved ejaculatory control, somewhat firmer erections, and a shorter refractory period (the span of time between ejaculations).
Kegel excercises can be extremely helpful during pregnancy and after birth as well. Kegels are well-known for facilitating excellent bladder control, so they can ease problems with urinary incontinence. Strengthened PC muscles can also prepare the pelvic floor for childbirth, and may help prevent tearing and episiotomy. After birth, regular exercise of the PC muscles can accelerate postpartum healing, restoring tightness and muscle tone in the vagina.
Read the rest of this entry and learn more about toning your kegel muscles on the SheBop blog!