But kegel exercises aren't like bicep curls or any other strength training exercise. And if you're anything like me, you may wonder if you're doing it right or doing enough or if you're even using the right muscle at all. How do you know? Well, fortunately for us, there happen to be a number of products on the market that are made for exercising your PC muscle.
One such product is FunFactory's Smartballs Teneo. These lightly weighted silicone balls, when inserted vaginally, cause your PC muscle to automatically contract, providing the exercise needed without any conscious effort on your part (wouldn't it be nice if all exercise was like that?). So all you have to do is insert them/it - the Smartballs come in singles and, for a more intense workout, doubles - and go on about your business. While you're doing the dishes/grocery shopping/ballroom dancing/whatever the balls work their magic and your PC muscle gets a great workout.
That's the theory anyway. So how well does it really work? Fantastically.
As soon as I opened my box from Good Vibrations, who were kind enough to send me one of these little guys to try, I knew I was in for a treat. They sent me the single-ball version in pink, which peeked out enticingly from Fun Factory's sleek, grey packaging. I opened it to find, in addition to the product itself, an instruction sheet, a pamphlet featuring some of the company's other products, and a sample packet of lube. And when I picked up the Smartball itself, I couldn't wait to have it inside me.
It's made of a deliciously smooth silicone, but the pattern on it's surface gives it some texture. It's about 1.5" in diameter - substantial but not overly large. It's hollow inside, and if you shake it, you can hear and feel the little weighted ball that rattles around and provides the "vibration"* that stimulates your PC muscle and makes this whole thing work.
I learned a couple of things about the Smartballs right off the bat. Firstly, you definitely need to use lube when you insert them. The silicone is nice and smooth, but it's not slick. Without proper lubrication, it would tend to stick and drag against your skin, and that is not a sensation you want where your junk is concerned. So lube up, honey. Secondly, when it comes to the Smartballs, quicker is better. This is not a dildo. It doesn't start out small and get bigger toward the base. It's pretty much one size. And that one size is pretty substantial.
The first time I inserted my ball, I tried to take it slowly and gently, eeeeasing it it. Fortunately, there is a little groove at the base for you finger that makes this much easier. Still, it was pretty uncomfortable until it finally sort of popped in. I have sense discovered that you're better off using what I like to call the "band-aid method." Taking off a band-aid is uncomfortable, and there's not getting around it, so you just rip it off as quickly as possible. Similarly, inserting the Smartballs is slightly uncomfortable, and there's no getting around it, so it's best to just shove them in as quickly as possible. Of course, you should use your noodle here. If the discomfort is anything more than minor or there is any pain involved, STOP. Do not pass go. Do not stick these things in your vagina. Some people just might not be able to use these.
All that being said, this is the only downside I've discovered. Once their in, the Smartballs are quite comfortable. Not to mention, pleasurable. Whenever you move, that little weighted ball inside the Smartballs' shell moves too. And you can feel it. It's a very unique sensation, and I honestly don't know how to describe it other than to say it feels really nice. And if you get them positioned right, the Smartballs will also stimulate your g-spot - which is probably part of the reason for their size. I don't think I need to tell you how nice that is. Plus, you can tell they're working. You can feel your PC muscle contracting, so you know you're getting the workout you need.
Removing the Smartballs is much like inserting them - best done quickly. All you need to do is pull the loop, but you need to do so a bit more forcefully than you would think. The loop is made of silicone as well, so it will stretch. I find pulling firmly and quickly is best. There's a similar minor discomfort as when inserting. The stimulation is just so intense. But then the ball pops out and, if you're anything like me, you're left laying there going, "Wow..." for a moment.
All in all, I love the Smartballs. They're easy to use, effective, and totally discreet. You could wear these anywhere, during virtually any activity and - unless you have trouble concealing your... uh... true feelings - no one would ever have any idea. Since they're silicone, they're a snap to clean up. Just wash them with a little mild soap, and you're good to go.
I don't think I've worn them long enough or consistently enough to produce any major, lasting results, but I have no doubt that these would definitely help to strengthen your PC muscle. I've definitely developed a greater awareness of mine. And long-term benefits aside, these are just fun to use. Even if you just use them occasionally to make your household chores a bit more interesting, I think they're well worth it.
What Miss K has to say:
I wore the Smartball to work for an afternoon, as my job is pretty active. It was a little difficult to get in at first, but nothing that a little lube didn't help. And once it was in place, it stayed perfectly, no matter if I was walking, sitting, stretching, bending over, whatever. That little weight is certainly interesting. =) The Smartball is totally fine for getting in your Kegel exercises. At times I even forgot it was in there. But not for too long. =) I don't think I've used it enough to be able to tell the difference, but I'm sure I will soon, and even if not, it's certainly lots of fun.
So there you have it. Miss K. and I both give the Smartballs Teneo a big thumbs up. Head on over to Goodvibes now and get yours for 15% off!
*They say "vibration," but we're not talking vibration in the traditional, battery-operated, vroom-vroom sense. I can't really think of a better word for it, though, so... yeah. We'll just call it vibration.