Kegel exercises have long been touted as the superhero of pelvic floor workouts, but there's much more to an optimally functioning pelvic floor than just one movement or working one group of muscles. The core muscles—your abdominals, lower back muscles and glutes—are also a crucial part of maintaining a strong and healthy pelvic floor.

No, Kegels aren't enough, and the idea behind constantly tightening and squeezing the muscles is flawed. Often women have overactive and too-tight pelvic floor muscles, and the real antidote may be to learn how to relax them.

Why we leak

To understand the anatomy and flawed thinking behind a blanket prescription of pelvic-floor-tightening exercises, Jennafer Vande Vegte, a certified pelvic rehab provider, uses the following analogy.

"Think about your bladder like a filled balloon inside of your lower abdomen, stem and opening pointing down," Vande Vegte explained. "For this analogy, the balloon is your bladder, and the stem and opening of the balloon are your urethrae. Some women can't generate