For women experiencing pelvic disorders, when it comes time to strengthen your pelvic floor, Kegel exercises are a must. However without adding resistance into your workouts, it is difficult to make significant improvements unless you do a Kegel exercise 80-100 times daily. The problem with performing that many Kegels each day is that it takes a great deal of time and energy, which is often hard to come by in our busy lives.
Kegel exercises are done to strengthen the pelvic floor which is comprised of muscles, and important ones at that. This muscle group provide support of vital organs in women such as the bladder, vaginal canal, uterus, and rectum. Devices such as Kegel balls (also called ben wa balls or eggs), vaginal weights, cones and others are meant to complement traditional Kegel exercises and get you an effective workout in less time and see results faster.
Pelvic floor exercises, with or without Kegel balls, help tighten your pelvic floor and can help with common issues in women such as pelvic organ prolapse, incontinence, bladder control and can give you stronger feeling vaginal muscles!
Using our step by step guide on how to use a Kegel weight, you'll be using yours in no time. (Before using any system, we always recommend consulting a doctor or pelvic floor therapist)
The first step when using a Kegel exercise trainer is to find your starting point. First and foremost, start by washing them with warm water and mild soap. Begin with the ivory colored ball or the lightest one in your set.
Position yourself in a way that is comfortable with one leg raised on a step or chair. Gently insert the ivory weight just as you would a tampon by grasping the end that has the cord attached and sliding it in until the entire bulb is in your vagina, the cord should remain outside of the vagina. Use a water based lubricant as needed.
As you tighten your pelvic muscles to support it, you might notice the weight naturally pulls up and away from your fingers as it's drawn into your vagina.
Try to hold or squeeze for a few minutes. If you're successful, relax, remove it and repeat the process moving on to the next darker shade on the following day.
Continue this process until you've found a challenging, yet comfortable resistance level that can be held for several minutes but is challenging.
Then begin the 15 minute use schedule, using daily until it no longer feels challenging for 2-3 days. At that point, you can begin to use the larger sizes while doing Kegel exercises combined with functional movements as outlined in our Intimate Rose Guide to Kegel Exercises. Once these have become less challenging, progress to the next shade.
Don't worry! In this case, you'll want to attempt to hold the it while sitting down instead of standing. If that is still too challenging, try laying down instead.
Also, we encourage you to read our guide on how to do Kegel exercises so that you can supplement doing traditional Kegels during the day while not using the device.
After a week or two of using the vaginal weights while sitting or lying down, and doing the traditional Kegel exercises in the above link, you'll be ready to start to try them again.Common Mistakes When Doing Kegel Exercises
Also, a common mistake women make when they first start is to flex the abdominal muscles instead of the pelvic floor muscles. When you tighten your abdominals, those muscles tend to push down on the pelvic floor and push the weight out.
Flexing your pelvic floor muscles should feel like you're trying to hold back the flow of urine (we don't recommend you stop and start the flow of urine often on the toilet as this is harmful to the pelvic muscles, but you can do it once or twice to teach yourself that feeling).
We also recommend you insert Kegel weights while performing traditional Kegel exercises as we discussed above because sometimes it's hard for a beginner to "find" their pelvic floor muscles.
It can be challenging to find the pelvic muscles to contract them properly, and because you can’t see them move, thus it can be hard to focus on the right area.
This is one reason why many physical therapists recommend pelvic floor weights for patients with poor proprioception, another term for body awareness.
This is exceedingly rare. On one hand, congrats! Far less than 1% of our customers are able to do this right away. On the other hand, you can still improve!
As Amanda Olson, DPT, PRPC discusses, you should do one or all of the following:
Proceed to use the vaginal weights for around 15 minutes a day routinely, but be sure to listen to your body. Your pelvic muscles are just like any others - when they aren't accustomed to being exercised, they can get sore and tired.
Give yourself a break if you need it! Pelvic strength is a marathon, not a sprint and it's different for all women. It will take time and you don't want to over do it.
If the current level of resistance is feeling a bit too easy, try to move up to the next darker shade. It's ok to move up and down using different ones depending on how you're feeling that day. Just like normal exercise routines - on some days you're ready to take on the world and on other days, you need a breather.Should I be engaging my pelvic floor muscles the entire 15 minutes?
Having the weight inserted will force your pelvic floor muscles to activate simply through normal bodily movement. Also, gravity and your normal movement will occasionally make the weight begin to slip out. Once you feel this slip, perform a Kegel (engage your pelvic floor muscles) to keep the weight inside. This will also increase your strength. The more your pelvic muscles engage, the stronger you will get.What if I'm happy with my pelvic strength?
Congratulations! We're happy for you! To maintain the strength you have, simply cut back to using the Kegel balls 2-3 times per week. As with any muscular strength, if you do not perform a maintenance program your muscles will weaken- if you don’t use it you lose it! Keep up the great work so that you can continue to enjoy your success. We're glad you reached your goals! We love to celebrate with our customers, so send us an email if you'd like and share the good news :-)
Please be sure you're washing the vaginal weights before and after each use. They are non-porous, meaning nothing will seep into them, so they are super easy to clean with warm water and mild soap. For your safety and personal hygiene, cleaning is very important.
Yes. Research shows that Kegel exercises (a voluntary contraction of the pelvic floor muscles) with weights are effective at addressing issues such as urinary incontinence and pelvic organ prolapse when they are performed in sufficient amounts. The research varies as to how many per day are necessary and for how long, however they are commonly prescribed as a contraction of the pelvic floor muscles, held for 3-5 seconds, performed in sets of 10, 3-8 times per day.
They have been shown to be effective to address pelvic floor issues in women and men associated with urinary incontinence, overactive bladder, sexual issues wherein women have difficulty experiencing orgasm and better arousal during sex.
Kegel balls work by strengthening the pelvic floor muscles. These muscles support the bladder, vaginal canal, uterus, and rectum. Strengthening the pelvic floor muscles using Kegel balls or weights can help strengthen vaginal muscles to provide a tighter closure around the urethra, vagina, and rectum.
The length of time it takes to notice an improvement in pelvic floor strength is dependent on how many per day are performed, and at what frequency. Kegels performed for a 3-5 second hold for 10 repetitions, 6-8 times per day can result in noticeable changes in strength 3-4 weeks. Other factors associated with when noticeable change is present in the pelvic floor is the extent to which the muscles were injured or damaged, and how long the injury has been present. Examples of injury to the pelvic floor include pregnancy, childbirth, surgery, chronic constipation, and chronic cough leading to strain on the pelvic floor muscles.
Anything else I should know?
Still Got Questions about Kegel Balls? No Problem!
Take a look at our FAQ page or visit our blog for more in-depth articles covering common conditions affecting the vagina and pelvic floor.
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If you’re serious about strengthening your pelvic floor or even tightening your vagina, Kegels in conjunction with Kegel weights will give you the best results. Further, the IR weights are the only ones used in real Academy of Pelvic Health courses. They are the easiest to use, feature body safe medical grade silicone and come with a full exercise system, so you always know what to do next when using our Kegel system and keep improving. Shop now.
Medically Reviewed & Updated: August 21, 2020