Are Kegels Overrated?

Have you been told to ‘just do your kegels’?

You may have found that your medical professional has thrown this word around like it’s the solution to all intimacy-related challenges!

Kegels CAN be great!

But doing kegel exercises when your pelvic floor is not ready for them can actually INCREASE your pelvic pain!

Standard kegels are only helpful when the goal is to strengthen the pelvic floor muscles!

The standard kegel exercise involves repeatedly contracting and relaxing the pelvic floor muscles.

In the example of the bicep muscle, standard kegel exercises are like doing a full bicep curl – a curl and contraction (squeeze) and a lowering down and relaxation of the muscles.

Standard kegels strengthen the pelvic floor.

But…

What if your pelvic floor is in need of relaxation as opposed to a session at the pelvic gym?

That’s where REVERSE kegels come in!

Reverse kegels are designed to RELAX the pelvic floor.

In the example of the bicep muscle, reverse kegel exercises focus on just the lowering down and relaxation of the muscles.

Which pelvic floor state is a good candidate for which kind of kegels?

Since standard kegel exercises (and kegel exerciser balls) aim to strengthen the pelvic floor, so they are NOT recommended if you have an over-active, or tight pelvic floor (as most people with vaginismus do).

The rule of thumb is that…

ONLY vulva owners with an under-active pelvic floor, that is overstretched, or weak (but not tight) are good candidates for standard kegel exercises.

The body response of vaginismus in particular results in having an over-active, or tight pelvic floor.

If you experience vaginismus, standard kegels will be great for regaining control of your muscles and strengthening them, but only AFTER you have first fully relaxed the pelvic floor and released any active trigger points you might have.

So if you’re in the midst of your healing journey and you haven’t gained FULL control of your pelvic floor yet, your number one priority is to learn how to relax the pelvic floor.

You can begin to do this by learning the proper pelvic floor relaxation techniques, such as breathing and REVERSE kegel exercises.

Yep, I said reverse kegels, rather than standard kegels.

To help with that, I’ve created guidance called “Pelvic Floor Relaxation Exercises Specifically For Vaginismus” in which I walk you through breathing, reverse kegels (NOT the standard ones) and stretching exercises that you can easily incorporate into your fitness routine without the need for equipment.

The “Pelvic Floor Relaxation Exercises Specifically For Vaginismus” come as part of The Pain Free and Intimate Recipe.

But there does come a time for doing standard kegels as well!

When you’ve learned how to manage the body response of vaginismus and relax your pelvic floor muscles, you can begin to strengthen your pelvic floor.

And regain FULL control of your muscles by doing standard kegels.

To facilitate the process, you can use exerciser tools designed exactly for this purpose.

Kegel balls!

Doing certain exercises, or even just walking around with exerciser balls inside your vagina actually helps strengthen and tone your vaginal pelvic floor muscles.

I know what you’re thinking – after all the effort spent in relaxing them…

This can help avoid any urine leakage and tighten up the vagina (say after pregnancy) to allow for better control of the muscles and more intense orgasms.

Increased control after years of not being able to control my pelvic floor muscles?

Yes please!

Also…

The added control could allow for you being able to tighten up your pelvic muscles around your partner’s penis during penetration, creating a more interesting and pleasurable experience for him and for you.

For me, the mere thought that I could be a BETTER lover was incredibly motivating, after not having been able to satisfy my partner as a result of dealing with vaginismus…

Little did I know…

That aside from using this control during intercourse, having the kegel balls in was pleasurable in itself!

So which kegel balls should you choose?

I tried the Fifty Shades of Grey Kegel Balls Set – this collection has been approved by E L James, Author of Fifty Shades of Grey.

And if you haven’t read the book, the inspiration for this set is from this recollection by Anastasia Steele in the book…

“He withdraws his finger briefly and with tender care, inserts the balls one at a time, pushing them deep inside me.”

This is what I have to share about these kegel ball exercisers:

Number of Exercisers

This set comes with 4 exercisers, where 6 is the most I’ve seen with kegel balls sets.

A wide range of sizes and weights helps you level up from beginner to advanced within the same set.

This versatility isn’t something you see with all kegel ball exercisers!

Exerciser Weights

This is THE most important attribute when it comes to kegel exerciser balls.

The weights of the Fifty Shades of Grey Kegel Balls Set are:
Ball 1 (white): 0.5 oz
Ball 2 (light grey): 0.9 oz
Ball 3 (dark grey) : 1.2 oz
Ball 4 (black) : 1.9 oz

The reason you want gradually increasing weights in a kegel ball set is because the weight of the balls trigger your pelvic floor muscles to hold on.

If you actively contract and relax your pelvic floor while they’re in, this creates an even better workout and you get to practice controlling your pelvic floor movements both up (on contractions) and down (on relaxations).

Your pelvic floor is essentially performing bicep curls about, allowing it to gradually strengthen.

Also, a larger weight creates more of an intense resistance to the pelvic floor and this makes for a deeper massage as the ball sits there and rolls around with your body’s natural movement.

Configuration (Sleeve)

The Fifty Shades of Grey Kegel Balls Set comes with a sleeve in which you can insert 2 balls, in whichever weight combination you wish.

There’s a total of 6 possible weight combinations!

The sleeve allows for more less versatility with the total amount of weight you choose to insert (since you can mix and match multiple balls of different weights).

Other sets, like the Je Joue Ami Silicone Kegel Balls don’t come with a sleeve. Instead, each ball is already configured exactly as it is meant to be inserted through the vaginal canal.

Others still, like Wellness Kegel Training Kit come with 2 sleeves, so you can choose to insert just 1 ball in the single sleeve, or 2 balls in the double sleeve.

Configuration (Retrieval String)

The sleeve has a retrieval string made of stretchy silicone that I found to sit quite comfortably when I had clothes on.

I think a handle serves as a huge help in taking out the kegel balls, instead of having to get them out with your fingers.

Think tampons with a string to pull out versus no string.

Reaching into my vagina with my fingers has never really been something I’ve done.

That tendency comes with vaginismus I guess. For example…

In my vaginismus days, after I learned to insert tampons, I never inserted one without an applicator.

I could only imagine taking out a kegel exerciser ball that doesn’t have a string to pull on would be difficult. UNLESS, you can just push it out with your pelvic floor, kind of like laying an egg…

I DID have a chance to try THIS set without a retrieval string!

Ball Sizes

All balls in the Fifty Shades of Grey Kegel Balls Set are of a diameter of 1.15″.

This is the smallest sizes of kegel balls I’ve tried so far, a smidge smaller than the Wellness Kegel Training Kit at 1.25″!

And…

I haven’t yet ran into a set in which the balls were either too small to be ineffective for strengthening of the pelvic floor, or too large to be uncomfortable.

It’s truly the weights of the balls (and HOW you use them), rather than their size that create that workout.

Material

The exerciser balls are made of latex-free, phthalate-free silicone.

Aesthetics

As the name suggests, the Fifty Shades of Grey Kegel Balls Set has different shades of greys within it, to help differentiate the ball weights.

Sensation

I found these balls to be wonderful for the purpose of both pelvic floor exercises AND for…

Since I first tried kegel exerciser balls, I discovered that the sensation of the balls rolling around once they’re in your vagina creates a nice effect.

The 2 heavier balls in the Fifty Shades of Grey Kegel Balls Set have an inner marble, while the 2 lighter balls don’t.

The beauty of the inner marble is that it makes the sensation even more intense! The rolling around creates an ADDITIONAL pleasant feeling, almost like a gentle vibration.

Making you want to physically move around more as you wear them.

Price (in USD)

The price for this set is $40, which is among the mid price points for kegel exerciser balls.

So…

Would you be curious to try the Fifty Shades of Grey Kegel Balls Set when your pelvic floor is nice and relaxed and ready for some strengthening?

Kind of like this?

To help you find the perfect set for you, I’ve been sure to do my research thoroughly and objectively.

You can read about my reviews of other kegel exerciser balls here:
Je Joue Ami Kegel Exerciser Balls
Fantasy for Her Kegel Trainer Set
Luxe Double O Beginner Kegel Balls (these don’t have a retrieval string!)
Wellness Kegel Training Kit
G Balls 2 Kegel Balls (these are vibrating and come with an app!)

Please comment below with your story, thoughts, questions or objections about anything I shared!

Also, I want to congratulate you for committing to your healing journey by doing your research and reading this!

Starting is the hardest step and that means you’re well on your path to healing! Celebrate that fact today! How about a relaxing massage?

If you haven’t gotten your hands on this goodie yet, get “11 Tips From Vulva Owners: What Helped Them Overcome Vaginismus”.

And get my book, “Vaginismus: Breaking The Cycle Of Pain” for FREE now (just pay shipping so I can get it delivered to your door)!

To your pelvic strength and pleasure!

– Katrin, with Love

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