After my second baby was born, my midwife informed me that I had some pelvic floor and core issues going on. I had a diastasis recti (separation of the ab muscles, which is very common postpartum) as well as a rectocele (where your rectum prolapses so it’s right smack next to, but not inside, your vagina). It was fun times all around.
The thing was, I was now the mom of two young children, and because neither condition was bothering me very much, I neglected to do the kegels and pilates classes my midwife recommended. I mean, who has time for that?
Well, fast forward five years. I was approaching 40, and my body decided it was going to send me the message loud and clear that something needed to be done. I was having major back pain (one of the symptoms of diastasis recti), and I was experiencing intense pressure and pain in the rectal area, especially during my period and sex. UGHHHHH.
So I did some research and enrolled in a core and pelvic floor strengthening exercise program. I am not being paid to say this, but it was totally awesome, and within a few months almost all of my issues were gone. (It should be noted that this isn’t the only program out there, and lots of women have similar success with pelvic floor physical therapists).
I felt like a new woman who moved better, slept better, and didn’t have to deal with annoying butt pain during her period or sex. WooHoo!
But it turned out that there was another huge added bonus. I found that not only was sex less painful (in fact, it was pain-free!), but also better. Like so, so much better. I have always had pretty awesome, pleasurable orgasms that weren’t that difficult to achieve. But holy moly—this was something different.
I orgasmed almost as quickly as, ahem, my husband. And they were intense. Strong. Breathless. Hot AF. And not only that, but they lasted forever. It was multiple orgasm city. Like I could just keep going and going and going.
At first I thought it was the weird changing hormonal make-up of being a 40-year-old badass woman. But the change coincided pretty much right with the exercises and strengthening I was doing. And after a little research, I learned that having a strong pelvic floor really can result in stronger, more amazeballs orgasms for women. Who knew, right?
But don’t just take my word for it. Experts agree, too.
The pelvic floor muscles, explains Brent Reider in a paper published in the Journal of Women’s Health, Issues and Care, “are the same muscles that contract during orgasm. Consequently, firmer muscle tone of the pelvic floor muscles adds intensity to the muscle contractions during orgasm and enables a woman to identify, isolate, and command muscles of the pelvic floor.”
Dr. Anna Cabeca, an OB/GYN and sexual health expert, agrees. “It’s true that healthy pelvic floor muscles can help you have stronger orgasms,” she writes in an article for mindbodygreen.
However, as fab as this all is, Dr. Cabeca doesn’t want killer orgasms to be the main reason why a woman would focus on strengthening her pelvic floor.
“Having healthy pelvic floor muscles is vital for women to live a pain-free and healthy life—regardless of their sexual activity,” Dr. Cabeca says. “I mean, who wants embarrassing leakage? Even more, who wants to experience pelvic prolapse issues that cause pain and may even require surgery?”
Yup. That’s 100% true, too. As Dr. Cabeca explains, a weak pelvic floor is the main culprit behind issues like leaking pee, incontinence, back pain, and reproductive organ prolapse – none of which any woman should just “put up with” or soldier through.
The point is that all women deserve to feel strong, healthy, and able. After having babies — and especially as you get older — that’s likely going to mean maintaining a strong pelvic floor.
And the fabulous thing is that doing that work is going to likely improve your sex life and give you the kind of mind-blowing orgasms you haven’t had since your 20s. But honestly, that’s more than just an added bonus. We all deserve that kind of pleasure—and the bigger and stronger, the better. Amen.