Written by Kait Scalisi MPH, Director of Education and Training, My Secret Luxury and My Secret Soiree
You may even know their technical name (it’s Ben Wa balls FYI) and that they help you do your Kegel exercises. But do you really know what any of that means? Or how it relates to your pleasure and sex?
If not, you’re not alone. And keep reading.
First up: a quick anatomy lesson. As you learned in the science of orgasms, when you orgasm, what you actually experience is a series of super fast muscle contractions. What muscles are involved in your climax?
“Those would be the muscles of the uterus, vagina, pelvis, penis, anus, and prostate gland. These are known as the pelvic diaphragm and the urogenital muscles. They support your pelvic organs (e.g. bladder, uterus, and prostate) and help you stop the flow of pee midstream. The PC muscles, which you may have heard of or even strengthened through Kegel exercises, are part of this system.”
These muscles, in turn, are directly connected to those of your core, including your abs and buttocks. This is why you may sometimes find your legs twitching or you roll up during orgasm.
Because of this connectivity, there are two schools of thought regarding the best way to strengthen all these muscles, which from here on out I’ll be referring to as your orgasm muscles.
One school says: “Kegels Kegels Kegels!”
The other says: “Kegels are horrendous! Focus on core work instead.”
I recommend taking a middle ground. First, let’s explore why some folks don’t advise doing Kegels.
The Problem with Kegels
Kegels can be wonderful tools when done correctly. Properly exercising your Kegels means both tightening and releasing the muscles. Like with any exercise, the relaxation bit is as important as, if not more so than, the tightening/contraction. Why? Repeat after me:
Tight muscles are not strong muscles.
If you’ve ever had a charley horse in your leg or a knot in your back, you know what I mean. So if you’re doing Kegels without the help of exercisers, focus on the letting go part.
Additionally, for people, especially women, suffering from sexual pain, doing Kegels at all may contribute to the pain cycle. Though Kegels are often discussed as an amazing treatment, not everyone with pelvic floor issues should do them.
If you have pelvic pain, please consult with a pelvic floor physical therapist or an ob/gyn with experience treating painful before doing Kegels.
Why Kegels Rock!
Ok – so Kegels have to be done properly and they aren’t for everyone. Now that we’ve established that, let’s talk about why they are so darn amazing.
Stronger orgasms . . . .
And a boatload of other sexual health benefits such as prevention of incontinence and helping before and after pregnancy. Because orgasms are just muscle contractions, strengthening those muscles lets you have stronger contractions and therefore, more pleasure.
As you learned above though, it’s not only the PC muscles that lead to great pelvic health. It’s the whole pelvic diaphragm, urogenital muscle complex, and core. Quite simply this means the the absolute best practice for your strongest orgasm is a combination of both Kegels and core work.
Extra bonus: a stronger core helps you have more vigorous, adventurous sex, which also helps you have stronger orgasms!
Now I am not saying you should go out and start an intense exercise regimen. Obviously, exercise is good for you. But what I do recommend is combining these best practices to make exercise even more fun.
That’s right, work your Kegels while you workout. Multitasking your way to better orgasms!
You can do strengthen your Kegel muscles thanks to fabulous tools called Kegel exercisers. These include the Ben Wa balls as well as Kegel balls, which are larger and often have a string attached for easy removal.
I personally recommend the Lelo Luna Beads. Each set has four balls so you can add weight as your muscles strengthen. Additionally, they can be fully sterilized in boiling water. Lastly, they provide a fabulous rumble-y sensation when you wear them.
All Kegels balls have a smaller ball inside that moves around when you do things like walk, use the elliptical, go up stairs (or a stair machine), squat, etc. So if the argument above regarding the benefit of working out and doing Kegels didn’t convince you, maybe the idea that you’re getting vibrations against your G-spot while you work out will.
You’ll be to only one smiling on the elliptical!
Buy Kegel exercisers here.
One Final Thought
To strengthen a muscle, there must be a force put against it. For the PC muscles, this force is gravity. That means Kegels balls work best when you’re standing. Gravity pulls down on them and your muscles must tighten to keep them in.
To recap: to get the strongest orgasms, use a combo of Kegels and exercises that strengthen your core muscles, especially your abs and butt. You can do both at once and enjoy working out (even more) thanks to Kegels balls.
Have questions? Kait, our resident sex educator, is here to answer them. Email her here.
Special thanks to Anthony Rojas, DPT and Heather Jeffcoat, DPT for contributing knowledge for this article.