SMART(ER) BALLS asks:
There was a recommendation on how good "SMART BALLS" made by fun co are for pelvic muscles and general sexuality...why are they helpful? how often should you use them? how long can you safely keep them in in a 24 HR. period?
Dear Smart(er) Balls,
Kegel exercises are performed by tightening and releasing the PC muscles (which stands for pubococcygeus muscles). This concept was first developed by Dr. Arnold Kegel to help women with urinary incontinence. Beyond the discovery that strong PC muscles help with urinary-related issues, physicians have found Kegel exercises to be very beneficial to many other aspects of sexual health and pleasure.
Strong PC muscles have been linked to heightened arousal, increased lubrication, as well as more intense orgasms, sometimes involving ejaculation. Furthermore, physicians often recommend regularly practicing Kegel exercises during pregnancy as it has been found to ease childbirth, as well as the recovery process post labor.
Kegel exercises can be done with or without the use of toys, although having something inside of you to tighten around (such as the SmartBalls) will strengthen those PC muscles more efficiently. The length of time you spend doing the Kegel exercises is entirely up to you. Just like lifting weights at the gym, you may want to start small (not referencing actual size here), and then work your way up. For example, perhaps start with three sets of twenty a couple of times a week. When you are ready, you can move on the three sets of twenty every other day, or every single day, or try three sets of thirty, or even three sets of twenty or thirty a couple of times a day. You can also play with the length and duration of tightening and releasing as well. For example, you can simply tighten, hold for one second and then release, or you may want to tighten and hold for three seconds and then release, or you may want to try tightening and releasing as quickly as your muscles will allow. I personally like to incorporate a combination of all three of these (one set of each X three sets per day). Basically, keep working on these exercises until you see (well, actually, feel) results.
There are a number of different toys you can use you strengthen your PC muscles such as balls and bars made of all types of materials. Smartballs are a trademarked brand of Kegel ball made by a great company called Fun Factory. They are made of 100% silicone, and weigh about 66 grams. Smartballs are great for those who are new to Kegel exercises. Because they are made of non-porous materials, Smartballs can be worn safely for an extended period of time. Luna Balls by Lelo are also great for Kegel exercises because they come with four different balls; one set weighing a combined 56 grams and another set weighing a combined 74 grams. With the Luna Balls you can start with the lighter ones and work your way up to the heavier ones (with the goal being to hold the in for an extended amount of time without falling out). You also have the option to use a single ball instead of two at the same time. Luna Balls are made out of non-porous ABS plastic and silicone, and can also be safely worn for an extended period of time.