Once downloaded from iTunes®, Kegel Aerobics allows the user to progress at her own pace, training a woman in how to contract and release her pelvic floor muscles in order to tone and strengthen them. The benefits of routine exercises of these internal muscles have long been established by clinical researchers as a first line of treatment for both stress urinary incontinence, or leakage when coughing, laughing, or sneezing, and for controlling sudden urgency associated with overactive bladder. There is emerging research that pelvic floor exercises can have some limited effectiveness in addressing mild to moderate symptoms of pelvic organ prolapse, or when vaginal walls collapse allowing pelvic organs such as the bladder to descend. Men and women have recognized their value in supporting sexual function and vitality. In men, these are the very muscles that assist with achieving and maintaining a healthy erection, for example. (There’s a companion app for men called Prostate Aerobics.)
Like other muscles throughout our body, pelvic floor muscles are prone to weaken and atrophy if not exercised and used regularly. Women, more so than men, appear to be less motivated to stick with a pelvic muscle exercise routine. Women also have greater difficulty identifying these muscles. It’s estimated by clinicians that as many as half of all women who initially try to do the contractions without instruction do not do them correctly. Some people have let their muscles weaken to the point they cannot be readily identified and therefore need the help of a physical therapist and biofeedback to get “jumpstarted.”
This app takes away the guess-work and the need to post reminders around the house or in your car. Built into the function is a reminder signal right on the smart phone housing the app. Kegel exercises are described and anatomical drawings are supplied to facilitate understanding of where they are located. The series then takes you from level 1 to as high as 9 depending on the progress you make, each level aimed at holding contractions longer or doing a greater number of repetitions of short contractions, as we have both fast twitch and slow twitch muscle fibers. And different positions take into account gravity to challenge your muscle strength in more advanced levels of instruction.
From iTunes, reviews offer such comments from users of the app as:
“Great app! Very challenging, but worth it. Go Kegel Girl!” – Leemz, 27, January 30, 2013
“I am FINALLY getting a restful peaceful night’s sleep.” – Foodwatcher, February 5, 2013
“Wow!!! Love this app!! Can be done anywhere. Very EZ……..” – MargieSams, February 21, 2013
If you received this free download at the conclusion of Bladder Health Week, we are interested in hearing from you. Let us know if you found the app to be useful by emailing us at firstname.lastname@example.org. We are looking to share anonymous testimonials of what this app has done for you and how well you’ve liked its features and functionality.
Of course, if you don’t own an iPhone or are not into using apps, simply visit our friend and accomplished PT Tasha Mulligan to learn all you need to know to direct your own routine.