Beginner’s Guide to Kegel Ball Exercises
Posted on August 14 2018
We all know that working out keeps us fit, strengthens our muscles and makes us healthier overall. But did you know that the same is true for exercising muscles found inside the vagina? Sometimes referred to as ‘Kegel muscles’, they are actually called pelvic floor muscles and are very important. They’re the muscles that keep incontinence at bay, just for example. But they can become weaker as we age, or after a trauma such as childbirth.
What are pelvic floor muscles?
Have you ever tried to stop urinating mid-flow? The muscles that you squeeze to do it are your pelvic floor muscles. They sit underneath the uterus, bladder and bowel, and they’re often neglected. Age, childbirth, obesity, chronic constipation and certain surgeries can all weaken them, and just like any muscle, they’ll need exercise to get back into shape.
What are the benefits of Kegel exercises?
‘Working out’ your Kegel muscles keeps them functioning correctly, which has all sorts of benefits for your health. The best-known one is reducing incontinence – Kegel exercises can eliminate leaking when you cough or sneeze, and allow you to go longer between toilet breaks. They’re also great for expectant and new mothers, both giving you more control over labour and speeding up the recovery process afterwards. And Kegel exercises can even improve your sex life by making your vagina feel tighter and your orgasms more intense!
How do I do Kegel exercises?
It’s simple. All you need to do to give your pelvic floor a workout is repeatedly tense and release those muscles. No one can see what you are doing, so you can do it anytime, anywhere – even at work! Like any exercise, you need to keep doing it to maintain your level of ‘fitness’. Kegel exercises should be done daily, to keep your pelvic floor muscles permanently strong.
For a better workout, once your muscles are tensed hold them like that for five seconds before relaxing. Gradually increase that length of time to see even more improvement, or just do more repetitions. You may also want to try Kegel balls, described below.
How do Kegel balls help?
Also known as Ben Wa balls or vaginal exercise weights, Kegel balls are designed to strengthen both the pelvic floor muscles and the muscles that make up the walls of the vagina. When you insert them, your body ‘grabs’ onto them, automatically tensing your muscles without much need for you to think about it. If you want to concentrate on other activities while exercising your pelvic floor, such as going for a walk, you may prefer Kegel balls to standard Kegel exercises.
Are Kegel balls sex toys?
Kegel balls are first and foremost a healthcare aid, but that’s not to stop you using them just for fun – it’s perfectly safe to do so. The Fifty Shades of Grey stories have caused a surge in popularity for Kegel balls as sex toys, after mentioning that they felt heavy and hot when Christian Grey inserts them into Anna’s vagina. And since they stimulate the anterior vaginal wall which is packed full of sensitive nerve endings, it’s no wonder that some people find using them arousing.
Who will benefit most from Kegel ball exercises?
- Pregnant women
Kegel ball exercises are safe during pregnancy and after giving birth. For expectant mothers, these exercises strengthen the vaginal muscles to make child birth easier to some extent. And post-partum, they help with recovery by tightening the vaginal muscles and strengthening the pelvic floor.
- Women with urinary incontinence
Many women experience incontinence to some degree as they age. In mild cases, it may just cause slight leaking when you cough or sneeze – but it can still be uncomfortable and embarrassing. Kegel ball exercises can be very helpful in regaining control over your bladder.
- Women worried about a prolapsed uterus
Uterine prolapse is the name for a condition when the uterus slips down of place, moving into the vagina, or even protruding out of it. It occurs when the pelvic floor muscles and ligaments become too weak to hold it where it should be, and may require surgery to fix. Strengthening those muscles greatly helps to prevent it happening in the first place.
- Women who want to improve their sex life
With age, it’s natural for the vagina to get looser. The pelvic floor muscles surround the vagina, hence keeping them strong and taut can make the vagina itself feel tighter. Regular Kegel ball exercises will effectively combat the signs of ageing, keeping you youthful ‘down there’!
Why choose DIVAINNER’s Ben Wa balls?
Not all Kegel balls are created equal. We use only high-quality, FDA-approved silicone that is naturally antibacterial and completely body-safe, even for those with sensitive skin. It’s also waterproof and non-porous, meaning you can clean the Kegel balls easily with soapy water. Plus, they feel velvety smooth for your comfort.
Here’s how to use our Ben Wa balls:
- Empty your bladder to avoid any discomfort
- Place 2 balls inside the silicone sleeve – different weights are included in our beginner’s kit, so you can gradually increase the weight and intensify the workout
- Apply a little lubrication to help them glide in more easily, and insert them just as you would a tampon with the cord left outside
- Tighten your pelvic floor muscles by squeezing the balls or trying to lift them. Aim to keep them in place for 15 minutes a day, but as your pelvic floor gets stronger you can increase this up to as much as a few hours!
- Gently tug on the cord to remove them, and wash well with warm water and a mild soap
Kegel balls are nothing new. Women have been using them for over 1,500 years – because they work! Try them for yourself and you can expect to start seeing results after just a few weeks of practise.