Piles, or hemorrhoids, are inflammations of the rectum caused by a pooling of blood that results in enlarged blood vessels. It is often caused by constipation, obesity or pregnancy--all conditions that place significant pressure on the rectal area. Piles can be extremely painful, but certain exercises can reduce the symptoms or prevent the condition from occurring in the first place.
According to Natural-HomeRemedies.org, stomach exercises increase blood flow to the abdominals, which can help flush out toxic blood that has congested in the area, including the anus. Strengthening your abdominals can also ease constipation, a common cause of piles. One of the simplest exercises is the leg slide, which involves lying on your back with feet flat on the floor and your knees pointing up to the ceiling. Contract your stomach muscles and inhale as you slowly slide your right foot away. Keep your foot flat on the floor and, when you can no longer do this, slowly start to slide your foot back to the start position, exhaling as you do so. Repeat on the opposite leg, aiming for at least five slides on each side.
Pelvic Floor Exercises
Cancernet notes that these exercises not only strengthen the deep abdominal muscles, but can also improve muscle tone around the anus. This is helpful if you suffer from piles as, in extreme cases, the enlarged blood vessels can protrude outside your anal passage. Stronger anal muscles can prevent the vessels from popping out. To find your pelvic floor muscles, imagine you are trying to stop urinating and passing wind at the same time. You should feel a tightening around your anus and between your thighs, but be sure to keep your stomach, buttock and thigh muscles relaxed. To begin, contract your pelvic floor muscles for five seconds then relaxing them for five seconds. Repeat at least five times and gradually build the hold time to 10 seconds. Once you've mastered the slow repetitions, try quickly contracting and relaxing the muscles 10 times.
Yoga is widely known to improve circulation to all parts of the body and the rectal area is no exception. According to The Holistic Care website, sarvanga asana--also known as candle pose or shoulder stand--is particularly beneficial because it forces impure blood that has pooled in the enlarged vessels in your rectum back up towards your heart where it can be oxygenated and the toxins flushed out. To assume this posture, lie on your back and roll your legs, buttocks, hips and back off the floor so that your legs are pointing straight up to the ceiling. You should be resting on your head, shoulders and your upper arms, with your hands placed on your back at hip height to provide extra support. Hold this position for as long as you can then gently roll back down to the floor.