Pelvic Floor Exercises

Pelvic Floor Muscles

They are made up of layers of muscle and other tissues. These layers stretch like a hammock from the tail bone at the back to the pubic bone in front.

Why the Pelvic Floor Muscles may weaken?

  • Pregnancy and childbirth
  • Continual straining to empty the bowel (constipation)
  • Persistent heavy lifting
  • Being overweight
  • Changes in hormonal levels at menopause
  • Chronic cough

What does Pelvic Floor Muscle do?

  • It supports the pelvic organs the bladder, uterus and bowel.
  • It gives extra control to these outlets especially on coughing, sneezing or any exertion (It helps to stop urine leaking in stress incontinence).
  • It helps you to “hold on” to both the bladder and bowel outlets whenever you get the urge to go.
  • It increases sexual enjoyment.

Pelvic Floor Exercise

  1. Sit or lie comfortably with the muscles of thighs, buttocks and abdomen relaxed.
  2. Tighten the ring of muscle around the back passage as if you are trying to control diarrhoea or wind. Try to hold the contraction as you count to five then release and relax.
  3. It is important to rest for about 10 seconds in between each contraction. If you find it easy to hold for a count of five, try it for longer, up to ten seconds.
  4. Repeat this as many as you can up to a maximum of 8-10 squeezes.
  5. Also do five to ten short, fast, but strong contractions.
  6. Do this exercise routinely at least 4-5 times every day. While doing the exercises, remember: NOT to hold your breath NOT to tighten your tummy, buttocks and thighs NOT to push down but squeeze and lift UP.
  7. Once you have learnt these exercises, they can be done during daily activities, e.g. bathing, watching TV, brushing teeth, traveling and reading books.
  8. Meanwhile, if you feel that urine leakage is imminent, try to do the “squeeze” in order to stop the leakage.

Do the exercises regularly, Don't give up!

To help your Pelvic Floor Muscle

  • Avoid constipation and prevent straining during your bowel movement.
  • In case you have chronic cough, seek medical advice to reduce sneezing and coughing.
  • Keep your weight within the ideal range for your height and age. Don’t get overweight.
  • Remember to attend regular follow up.


(Source: Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, Queen Elizabeth Hospital)