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    Pelvic floor (kegel) exercises for men

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      Man doing kegel exercise

      Pelvic floor exercise for men, also known as kegel exercise, can strengthen the pelvic floor muscles, which affect sexual function.

      Kegel exercise for men

      Kegel exercise isn’t just for women. Regular kegel exercise for men can help prevent erectile dysfunction and premature ejaculation. If you experience erectile dysfunction (ED) or premature ejaculation (PE) then kegels can be used in combination with medical treatments such as Viagra. It should be noted that positive effects from kegel exercise won’t happen immediately and, for severe cases of ED or PE, you should certainly consider medication as well.

      Locate your pelvic floor muscles

      Before you can exercise your pelvic floor muscles, you need to locate them. To begin with you might want to practice sitting down or stand naked in front of a mirror. (After a bit of practice you should be able to perform kegel exercises lying down too.) Relax the muscles of your thighs, buttock and abdomen.   

      • Tighten and draw in the muscles around the anus, as though you were trying not to break wind. Then relax. Practice this a few times until you’re sure the right muscles are being exercised. Try not to squeeze your buttocks or contract your stomach muscles.
      • Do the same technique with your urethra, where you pass urine. Squeeze your muscles together as though you were trying to stop a urine stream. Your penis should slightly draw into your stomach. You can even practice this while urinating to make sure you have the right muscles.  

      Exercise your pelvic floor muscles

      Now you have located your pelvic floor muscles, and practised the technique, you are ready to exercise. Pelvic floor exercise is commonly known as ‘kegel exercise.’ You should try slow kegels and fast kegels.

      Slow kegels

      • Contract your pelvic floor muscles, hold for five seconds, and then relax for five seconds. Breathe normally while you do this.
      • Repeat the contraction, then relax for another five seconds. Try and make each contraction slow and controlled.
      • Do this exercise up to 10 times. Stop and rest if it feels uncomfortable.
      • Gradually, try and hold the contraction for longer. So eight seconds, then 10 seconds. Always relax for the same amount of time as you contract.

      Fast kegels

      • Exactly the same technique as slow kegels: contract, hold, relax.
      • However the contractions are short and rapid. Hold the contraction for a second, then relax, then contract again straight away.
      • Try and do ten fast kegels after a set of ten slow kegels.
      • Over time, try and increase this number. So 15 fast kegels, 20 fast kegels and so on.

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      How often should I practice kegel exercise?

      Frequently. Ideally you should practice your kegel exercises 3-5 times a day – however this is a minimum. If you wish to practice more then feel free. Aim for three sets of both slow and fast kegels. Sounds a lot but shouldn’t take more than five minutes, and even less when you’re starting out. Three sets of 10 fast kegels should barely take ten seconds each. Doing five 10-second kegels should take under two minutes.  

      Remembering to kegel exercise

      Ideally find regular times to practice your kegel exercises so you don’t forget and fall into a routine. Good times to practice include:

      • When you wake up in the morning
      • After you go to the toilet
      • Before you go to bed

      You can even practice kegel exercises sitting at your desk at work. Perhaps when you arrive, before lunch, after lunch, and before you leave. Or, if you want to stretch yourself, practice them on the hour. Just make sure you have a fixed time so you don’t forget.

      Kegel exercise for men and erectile dysfunction

      Pelvic floor exercise can be an effective treatment for ED. Regular kegels help to strengthen the bulbocavernosus muscle. The bulbocavernosus aids blood flow to the penis during erection and pumps during ejaculation. (It also helps empty the urethra after urination.) A strong bulbocavernosus minimise the risk of ED.

      Kegel exercise for men and premature ejaculation

      Pelvic floor exercise can also help treat PE. Regular kegels strengthen the pubococcygeus muscle, which can help control ejaculation. The pubococcygeus is the same muscle used to control urine flow and specifically exercised by kegels. A strong pubococcygeus can help delay PE in the same manner you would use it to stop urine flow: contracting before you ejaculate.   

      If you want to explore medical treatment for ED or PE, visit our online clinics for premature ejaculation and erectile dysfunction.  

      Authors and editors

      • Written by

        Dr Anup Jethwa
        GMC number: 7138282
        Date published: 28th Sep 2015

      • Edited and updated by

        Dr Jean Wong
        GMC number: 6132403
        Date reviewed: 8th Apr 2021

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