We all know (or at least we SHOULD all know!) that pelvic floor exercises are an essential element of our regular fitness routine – during pregnancy, after pregnancy and ongoingly.
Your pelvic floor is a sling of muscles that runs from your pubic bone at the front to the base of your spine at the back, supporting your bladder and bowels as well as your uterus. The weight of your growing baby increases the pressure on these muscles and they can become weakened, leading to potential stress incontinence when you laugh, cough or sneeze. Pelvic floor exercises are particularly important during and after pregnancy.
Stress incontinence is NOT a perfectly acceptable aspect of life post-childbirth – the fact that it happens to a lot of women, or that the very availability of ‘discreet’ incontinence pads normalises the ‘oops’ moment does not make it either inevitable or preventable.
But even if you DO regularly practise your pelvic floor exercises, are you sure you’re lifting, squeezing and contracting correctly?
Exercising with a video screen adds another dimension to your fitness routine, motivating you to stay focussed or encouraging you to push yourself harder. Many of us regularly workout in conjunction with a virtual or online world, taking us to different places or levels when we hit the treadmill. We trialled taking this to another muscle group, with a gaming experience that lets you control video games with your pelvic floor.
Perifit is a connected Kegel exerciser that lets you control video games with your pelvic floor. It was designed specifically to help women strengthen their pelvic floor to prevent and treat issues related to its weakening (pain, incontinence or even prolapse).
Created in conjunction with physiotherapists and pelvic floor rehabilitation professionals, the device measures deep and superficial muscle contractions, whilst providing fun and visual insights on how well and efficiently you are working your muscles. Perifit claims to be the only device that measures contractions in two directions to provide much more accurate and focused biofeedback.
Making pelvic floor exercises more fun and focussed has much more than novelty value – it also has the benefit of making your ‘lift and squeeze’ routine more effective, strengthening the oh-so-important sling of muscles that supports your bladder and bowels, as well as your uterus.
The device takes pelvic floor exercises to a new dimension. Download the app, activate the Bluetooth connection, insert the Kegel and away you go. Squeeze your pelvic floor muscles and catch the lotus on your screen….easy!
Surprise, surprise, initially it’s not that easy! Even for someone who regularly exercises their pelvic floor and doesn’t suffer unduly from stress incontinence it takes a while to get the hang of controlling your muscles to catch the lotus. But actually seeing how effectively your muscles are working as you exercise your way through the different levels of the game is a great motivator, with excellent results. The device does take a few goes to master, but it’s well worth setting aside the 5-10 minutes a day it takes to work your pelvic floor.
You can personalise your programme and track your progress. Seeing a daily improvement as you build up your strength and ability to catch the pesky lotus as it flies higher on the screen gives you’re a real boost.
The Perifit device is made from medical grade silicon, is FDA registered and 100% safe. It uses Bluetooth Low Energy which is extremely low powered but for absolute safety the manufacturers recommend waiting six weeks after the delivery of your baby before your start using it to exercise your pelvic floor. But don’t wait to start exercising – you might not be able to catch the virtual lotus until you’ve had your baby but we would recommend you ‘lift and squeeze’ and practise your elevator contractions on a daily basis to exercise your pelvic floor throughout your pregnancy.