You work out to tone your stomach, arms, and butt—why not your pelvic floor? That's the logic behind this viral BuzzFeed video in which holistic sex and relationship coach Kim Anami teaches three women about the basics of weightlifting with their vaginas. The goal: To strengthen their pelvic floor for more pleasure between the sheets.
The intrepid participants start by inserting a jade egg tied to a light pouch full of crystals, and proceed to swing the pouches between their legs while clenching their pubococcygeus (aka the muscle you use to stop peeing). "It feels like a tampon, it feels like nothing," one woman says as another breaks into laughter.
Anami herself has some powerful lady parts: A series of bizarre and cringe-inducing pics on her Instagram page show various objects—a coconut, a conch shell, a surfboard(!)—hanging from her nether regions.
#thingsiliftwithmyvagina The Bali Series: The mighty coconut. The young, or green coconut is my favorite to drink and eat. The water is sweet (so sweet it tastes like it has sugar added) and the flesh is melt-in-your-mouth soft. It was called the “kalpa vriksha,” which is Sanskrit for “the tree that supplies all that is needed to live,” in ancient India. Everything in it is full of beneficial and medicinal properties: from the water to the oil to the cream to the milk to the husk. Even the fronds of the palm can be used to wrap packages (see my last lift!) It also oils up bodies real good. #thingsiliftwithmyvagina #vaginalkungfu #coconuts #tropics #bali #indonesia
Some of Anami's claims in the video and on her website (where she promotes an e-course in "Vaginal Kung Fu") are, well, a bit out there. But we wondered, since strengthening your pelvic floor with kegels is a thing, is vaginal weightlifting something to consider?
"It's really just a new spin on an old idea," says Madeleine Castellanos, MD, a sex therapist in New York City and author of Wanting to Want: What Kills Your Sex Life and How to Keep it Alive ($11, amazon.com). "We've been telling women to do kegels for about 50 years. Vaginal weightlifting works the same muscles in similar ways."
Pelvic floor training can help with incontinence and pregnancy recovery and, yes, it can actually boost sexual pleasure: "You're targeting the same muscles that squeeze and contract during an orgasm," explains Dr. Castellanos. "As those muscles get stronger, your orgasms could become more intense."
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Women who don't orgasm on a regular basis might want to experiment with training via kegels or weights. However, she points out, the pelvic floor is just one of many factors that contribute to a healthy sex life, and strengthening it won't be a game-changer for everyone.
Interested in going beyond kegels? You don't need a coconut or even a pouch of crystals. There are a variety of vaginal weight sets on the market. The Aquaflex system, for example, includes two cones (one larger than the other) that you insert, and a set of progressively sized weights that can be attached on the outside as you build strength ($78, amazon.com). And then there's the Duotone Ben Wa Balls set, which offers a choice of two weights (32g and 52.5g) that can be worn all day ($70, amazon.com).
A word of caution: "If you struggle with chronic constipation or pain during sex, you should see a doctor before you try any type of vaginal weights," Dr. Castellanos says. If your pelvic floor is very weak to start with, you could have spasms and tenderness, she says.
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