Apparently, there are classes, and the pictures touting this routine display strings apparently anchored around a jade egg in the woman’s vagina (fortunately, we can’t really see through their clothes) and supporting everything from surf boards to coconuts. By using ancient Taoist courtesan regimens, this routine alleges improved orgasms and increased libido by treating vaginal “numbness.” Other reported benefits include everything from easier childbirth, resolution of incontinence, ability to launch pingpong balls (not going there) and even improved skin tone allowing discontinuation of botox. That is some serious clinching!
Given all of those purported benefits, who wouldn’t want to do it?! The problem is that there isn’t really any science behind any of those assertions, but there may potentially be some risk of harm. Here are a few of the concerns from urogynecologists (essentially the experts on pelvic floor musculature):
1. There’s no certainty that the regimen works the intended target muscles, and even if it does, there’s no guarantee that this routine may not strain or even injure those muscles, which in turn may result in development of pelvic pain. Lastly, even if it is safe and does target the appropriate muscles, there’s nothing to suggest that using suspended weights would provide any more effective treatment than simply doing kegels.
2. Secondly, jade is porous, meaning that it has a bunch of tiny holes in it. Tiny to us isn’t necessarily tiny to bacteria. Even if you have an autoclave (fancy medical cleaning machine) at home, it seems like it would be really hard to keep the anchoring rocks free from bacteria.
3. Third, this routine is based on holding, no actually clenching, rocks in the vagina. As a guy, I wouldn’t want rocks rubbing against my complimentary man parts, so I can’t imagine rocks rubbing in a women’s vagina would be comfortable.
From an ob/gyn perspective, vaginal Kung Fu doesn’t exactly seem like a great idea. Besides, even if spraining a muscle in the pelvic floor or exposing your vagina to rough, bacteria-laden rocks isn’t necessarily a deal breaker, I’d like to take a moment to be practical. While you might be able to do kegels at work without anyone noticing, I’d love to see you explain to your child or significant other exactly why there is a fruit basket tied to a string where?! If Little Johnny walks in on your exercise routine, he will need some therapy for sure!
In all seriousness, there are actually proven and safe ways to strengthen the pelvic floor. It probably makes the most sense to start with kegels. Here’s a link from the Mayo Clinic http://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/womens-health/in-depth/kegel-exercises/art-20045283 If that doesn’t work, take a moment to discuss your issues with your ob/gyn to help determine your next step.