Kegels: Your New Main Squeeze

They say the best things in life are free, and Kegels are a great example of this truism. Also know as PC (pubococcygeus) muscle exercises, Kegels are one of the single greatest things men and women can do to improve their sexual well-being. Squeezing this lovely little muscle can have heaps of benefits.

For sex geeks like me who care about this sort of thing, they are named after Arnold Kegel, a gynecologist who wanted to help women reduce incontinence (lack of bladder control). After instructing many patients in these exercises, Kegel learned that they not only improve bladder control but they have a wonderful side effect: improved orgasmic ability! That’s one helluva side effect, if you ask me. Additionally, Kegels are often recommended to women who’ve recently given birth as a way to regain vaginal tone.

The PC muscle starts and stops urine flow but also plays a role in orgasmic contractions, for both men and women. Doing Kegels regularly can make your orgasms stronger and more pleasurable. For women, Kegels can increase sensitivity and awareness of your G-spot. For men, contracting this muscle can improve ejaculatory control. Squeezing the PC muscle during intercourse can be pleasurable for both partners. And the best part: it’s free!

An important disclaimer: If you are one of the many women who experience pelvic or genital pain, talk to your health care provider before attempting these exercises.

Here is a step-by-step guide to getting your Kegels on:

  • To locate your PC muscle, stop the stream of urine the next time you go to the bathroom and observe what that muscle contraction feels like. You may want to try this a couple of times to get the hang of it. To avoid a mess, men may want to pee while seated when they try this exercise.
  • Once you’re aware of where this muscle is, you can contract and release it repeatedly whenever and wherever you want. (Don’t worry; doing these exercises elsewhere won’t cause you to wet yourself.) Remember to RELAX your PC muscle after you tighten it.
  • Try starting with a dozen reps a few times a day and gradually build up to more. Eventually, just doing the exercises can feel pleasurable. You can do them at red lights, at your desk while waiting for an internet video to load, or while in line at the bank and no one will know you’re doing them. This has a two-fold benefit: better orgasms and you look forward to long lines.
  • If you want to make the muscle even stronger, men and women can purchase weighted Kegel exercisers online at Babeland, LoveHoney, and MyPleasure (not free, obviously, but a good investment nonetheless).
  • Be patient. Like any workout, results probably won’t happen overnight. In the meantime, enjoy having a greater awareness of your sexual well-being and having a little secret the other people in the bank don’t know about.

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About Kate McCombs

Kate McCombs

Kate McCombs, MPH is a NYC-based sex educator + blogger. She's the founder of Sex Geekdom, a global community for sex educators, researchers, and other folks who love having geeky conversations about sex.


    thanks what a FYI, how would the weights work?

  • Kate McCombs

    Thanks for your question Angela! There are two types of weights for women: the barbell-types and the ball-types (like the photo next to the post). Both go inside the vagina to increase resistance for the PC muscle when a woman is doing her Kegels.
    The difference between the two types of weight is that the ball-types are lighter and don’t hang outside the vagina (the string hangs out, just not the ball itself unless you choose to do so with the 2-ball model). I know women who wear the Kegel balls while they run errands or clean the house (makes it more interesting, to say the least). The barbell is heavier than the ball-types I’ve seen and it’s used more like a dildo. Both toys can be used during masturbation to enhance sensation.

  • Debby Herbenick

    Great description of the different types and uses of these, Kate.

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