Welcome to Did You Know, a bite-sized, new column where we aim to make wellness more digestible. On the agenda for today: a simple solution for better orgasms.
Strengthening the pelvic floor may be the key to increasing sexual satisfaction. Dr. Sara Reardon, also known as The Vagina Whisperer, is a board-certified, pelvic floor physical therapist. She drops her knowledge and tips for getting a bigger, better, O.
WHAT: The pelvic floor consists of two layers of muscles that form a basket at the base of the pelvis supporting your pelvic organs (uterus, rectum, and bladder). Dr. Reardon shares why it’s the magic lamp that needs to be rubbed.
“The outer layer is connected to the vaginal opening and the clitoris. With arousal, the outer muscle layers and the clitoris become engorged from increased blood flow. The muscles continue to engage as the arousal builds, maintaining blood flow in the area. At the point of orgasm, the pelvic floor muscles contract and relax cyclically as you climax.”
WHY: “To reach an orgasm,” Dr. Reardon explains, “Your pelvic floor muscles must tighten to sustain blood flow during arousal. With less tension, they can’t maintain blood flow to the muscles or clitoris, making it difficult to climax. So, for women who want to experience stronger orgasms or (fingers crossed) multiple orgasms, strengthening their pelvic floor muscles is the way to go.
HOW: Every woman who’s ever picked up a magazine has heard that Kegel contractions are the best way to strengthen the pelvic floor. The most common Kegel technique is to pretend to sit on a marble and tighten the pelvic muscles as if you’re lifting it.
But according to Dr. Reardon, “Many vagina owners are doing Kegels incorrectly, are too weak to perform them, or may have tension and need to relax their pelvic floor muscles first before strengthening.” Ahead, are some of her favorite exercises for women to improve pelvic floor strength so they can see stars during sex.
Lie on your back with your knees bent. Try to do a Kegel, and simultaneously squeeze an exercise ball between your knees. Hold for 5 seconds.
Try a quick Kegel contraction where you contract and relax. Also, work on longer Kegel contractions, holding for 5 to 10 seconds before relaxing. Aim for three sets of 10 in each speed per day.
“Often, if we hold our breath or tense our muscles, we can’t engage or contract our pelvic floor for good blood flow,” Dr. Reardon states.
Lie on your back with a hand on both sides of your ribcage. Inhale, feeling your ribs expand like an umbrella. Exhale, and let it fall. “This can quiet the nervous system, relax your abdomen and pelvic floor, and prime your body to soften into arousal,” she says.
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