How To Use Kegel Balls To Strengthen Your Pelvic Floor

Looking to strengthen your pelvic floor muscles? If yes, then you’ve probably looked at loads of options and devices to speed up the process or make pelvic floor exercises easier to do. One of the options to improve your pelvic muscles is to use Kegel balls, but how safe are they to use? In this post, we take a look at how to use Kegel balls and chat through the pros, cons and safety implications of using them.

What are Kegel balls?

Kegel balls are small weighted balls that are pushed inside the vagina. They’re used to help strengthen the pelvic floor muscles whilst doing pelvic floor exercises (also known as Kegel exercises). They can also be used to increase sexual pleasure during solo play or with your partner during sex (1,2). Kegel balls come in various materials, weights, and sizes so you can choose a weight that you’re comfortable with. They range from the size of a marble to 2 inches in diameter.

Kegel balls have different names, which include:

  • Ben Wa balls
  • Weighted balls
  • Orgasm balls
  • Venus balls
  • Jiggle balls
  • Geisha balls
  • Love balls
  • Pleasure balls
  • Eggs
  • Vaginal cones/weights

There are significant risks to using Kegel balls. For example, there’s a risk of infection if your hands or the balls aren’t clean when using them. If used too much, or incorrectly, they can cause pain, discomfort, and even vaginal tearing. For these reasons alone, it is recommended to consider non-invasive treatments to strengthen your pelvic floor.

Who can use Kegel balls?

Kegel balls are often used by women when they have stress urinary incontinence and want to strengthen their pelvic floor muscles to stop their bladder leaks. However, they’re not always safe to use and we strongly suggest you speak to your doctor before using the vaginal weights if (1):

  • You are pregnant
  • You have just had a baby and recovering from the delivery
  • You have recently had gynaecology surgery
  • You have pelvic pain or a pelvic infection
  • You use a menstrual cup
  • You have an Intrauterine Device (IUD) fitted

How to use Kegel balls: step-by-step

Do you have Kegel balls tucked away at the back of your knicker draw and you’re not sure how to use them? — well we’ve put together this step-by-step guide to help you.

How to prepare Kegel balls

Before you use your Kegel balls it’s important to make sure they’re clean and safe to use, so: (1,3)

  1. Check your Kegel ball doesn’t have any cracks or damage to it.
  2. Wash your hands with warm water and antibacterial soap.
  3. Wash your Kegel ball with antibacterial soap and warm water.

How to insert Kegel balls

Inserting the Kegel balls can be scary, especially the first time you do it. But don’t worry, we’ve got you covered with these useful pointers:

  1. Pop a water-based lube on the Kegel ball and on the outside of your vagina to help ease the weight in (use as much as you need, ladies)
  2. Lie down on your back, part and relax your legs
  3. Insert the first Kegel ball into your vagina
  4. If your Kegel ball has more than one weight on it, continue to push the balls up into the vagina (only push them as far as you’re comfortable)
  5. It’s common for Kegel balls to have a loop or string at the end of them. Leave this outside of your vagina as you’ll use this to pull them out

How to exercise your pelvic floor using Kegel balls

It’s recommended to start strengthening your pelvic muscles without using Kegel balls because you need to be confident that you’re squeezing the right muscles before adding weights into your routine. Think of it as going to the gym and using your own body weight as resistance and then, as you get stronger, you introduce weights to continue to build your muscles. So, how do you exercise your pelvic floor muscles using Kegel balls? Let’s walk you through it (1):

  1. Once the Kegel balls are inside your vagina, tighten your pelvic floor muscles — you should feel the balls lift as you squeeze.
  2. Hold the squeeze for five seconds and then relax for five seconds.
  3. Keep repeating the squeezes five times in a row to complete one set. You can do up to three sets a day.

Whether you’re doing pelvic floor exercises with or without Kegel balls, you will need to do a lot of them every day to notice your pelvic muscles strengthening. This takes dedication and commitment and, as we all know, trying to fit exercises into the hustle and bustle of everyday life isn’t always easy.

Side note: we strongly suggest that you speak to your doctor to make sure you’re doing the right amount of pelvic exercises using the correct weight for your body. Also, if you squeeze your pelvic muscles for too long, or without having a break in between sets, it’s possible that you can overwork your vaginal muscles. They then become strained as the pelvic floor needs to be able to relax and contract regularly (2). Overworking your pelvic muscles can lead to pain, discomfort, tearing, and bladder problems.

Using Kegel balls for sexual pleasure

We told you earlier Kegel balls have other names, including love balls, orgasm balls, and pleasure balls — want to know why? Because they can be used for sexual pleasure too. Yep, you read that right. The Kegel balls can be placed inside your vagina during solo play to enhance sexual pleasure and sensations while you’re exploring your body. Kegel balls can also be used with your partner during foreplay to add a bit of spice to the bedroom.

How to remove Kegel balls

You’ve managed to insert them, you’ve done your pelvic exercises, and now you want to remove your Kegel balls, let’s talk you through it (1,2):

  1. Lie down and get comfortable.
  2. You may like to add more lube around the vagina opening to ease the Kegel balls out.
  3. Slowly pull on the string or loop at the entrance to the vagina and the weights should slide out.

If your Kegel balls don’t have a string attached, follow these steps:

  1. Stand with your feet wider than hip distance apart.
  2. Lower yourself into a squat position.
  3. Push the balls out (Think pushing a tampon out).

If the Kegel balls don’t slide out easily, don’t panic and try this:

  • Place more lube around the entrance to the vagina.
  • Walk, jump, or cough to encourage your muscles to contract and release.
  • If you aren’t able to get the balls out, reach out to your doctor for advice.

Getting the Kegel balls stuck inside the vagina is a risk and something to seriously consider before using them. Invasive options are not the only solution to improving your pelvic floor muscles, as non-invasive options that are backed by clinical research and proven to work are available.

How to clean and store Kegel balls

Cleaning and safely storing your Kegel balls is important, because if they’re not clean when inserted into your vagina, they can cause an infection. So, how should you clean and store your balls (1)?

  1. After taking the Kegel balls out, clean them with warm water and antibacterial soap.
  2. Pat the Kegel weights dry with a clean towel
  3. Leave the balls to dry on a clean surface (such as the towel you’ve dried them with or if they came in a case or bag, rest them on top).
  4. Place your Kegel balls in their storage case/ bag to keep them dry and clean until you use them again.
  5. Keep the weights in a cool and dry place to avoid a build-up of moisture.

Are there any risks with using Kegel balls?

There’s limited research to say whether using Kegel balls are safe or not. A 2013 review suggested that Kegel balls may help strengthen pelvic floor muscles for women who have stress urinary incontinence. However, the research projects were carried out on small groups of women and doesn’t offer a good understanding of how safe and effective Kegel balls are.

When doing your Kegel exercises you should only squeeze for five seconds and then relax your muscles for five seconds and repeat the exercises five times in a row to complete one set. You can do up to three sets a day but overworking your pelvic floor muscles can cause tightening of the muscles, which can cause discomfort, bladder problems, and painful sex (4,5). The risks are the same when you use Kegel balls. The best way to avoid overusing Kegel balls is to make sure you’re doing them correctly and using the correct weight and size ball for your body. It’s also important to make sure you’re not keeping the balls in for too long. Some Kegel balls can be left inside the vagina for up to 6 hours. However, as the pelvic floor muscles need to relax and contract continuously, wearing balls inside the vagina for this long can stop this from happening.

Making sure your balls are made of a safe material is important. Weights that are made from glass, metal, or medical grade silicone that are Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved are the safest to use. Kegel balls made from cheaper materials can carry a higher risk to your health.

Kegel balls are not safe for everyone to use. Check with a doctor before using vaginal weights if:

  • The lining of your vaginal walls is thin
  • You have recently given birth
  • You are pregnant
  • You have had gynaecological surgery
  • You plan on keeping the Kegel balls in for longer than 6 hours
  • Have pain in your lower back or surrounding areas
  • You have noticed discharge
  • You begin to tear around your vagina
  • You have an unpleasant smell from your vagina

Don’t use Kegel balls if you have an overactive pelvic floor (it can make your bladder leaks worse), a herpes breakout, or thrush. And to avoid infection, don’t share your Kegel balls with your friends, ladies.

Kegel balls can be dangerous to use as they’re a risk to your health. You may start out using them to improve your pelvic muscles but it could lead to further bladder problems. There are non-invasive options available to add spice to your sex life and to strengthen your pelvic floor muscles.

Strengthen your pelvic floor quickly and comfortably with INNOVO

We’ve covered a lot in this post, so to wrap it up, here’s a snapshot of the pros and cons of using Kegel balls:


  • Can cause pain and discomfort
  • May cause tearing
  • Can cause infections
  • May make bladder leaks worse


  • Can cause pain and discomfort
  • May cause tearing
  • Can cause infections
  • May make bladder leaks worse

Choosing the right option to strengthen your pelvic floor muscles can be a confusing one. You may be worried about choosing the right Kegel ball or anxious about the possibility of overtraining your pelvic muscles. However, there’s a solution to strengthen your pelvic floor muscles that doesn’t involve placing a Kegel ball, weight, or probe inside you — and that’s INNOVO.

INNOVO are a pair of shorts that are worn over five days, for 30 minutes each time. They have sensors built into them that do your pelvic floor exercises for you, while you sit back and relax. Using INNOVO reassures you that you’re safely strengthening the right muscles to help you reduce or stop your bladder leaks. Imagine being leak-free in 12 weeks without the faff and worry of doing pelvic floor exercises (with or without Kegel balls) safely and correctly. Find out how INNOVO works and how it can stop your bladder leaks in as little as 12 weeks (6).


  1. Healthline. How to Use Kegel (Ben Wa) Balls Like a Pro. Updated March 2019.
  2. Medical News Today. What To Know About Ben Wa Balls. October 2019.
  3. Intimate Rose. How To Use Kegel Exercise Weights. Updated August 2020.
  4. National Library of Medicine. Kegel Exercises. Self-care. Updated August 2021.
  5. Healthline. Yes, You Really Can Do Too Many Kegels. Here’s What Happens. December 2020.
  6. R. Dmochowski – Novel external electrical muscle stimulation device for the treatment of female stress urinary incontinence: randomized controlled noninferiority trial versus intravaginal electrical stimulation. ICS Conference 2018

Approved by Dr Ruth Maher, PT, PhD, DPT

After running a private practice in Atlanta for a few years, Dr Ruth Maher decided to open her own practice back home in Ireland and pursue my PhD at University College Dublin (UCD). She specialized in pelvic floor dysfunction while studying and working in the US and had many friends and co-workers who had stress urinary incontinence - but they said nothing about the condition. This was one of the reasons that inspired me to pursue my PhD and explore alternative solutions to effectively facilitate pelvic floor contractions that enhanced coordination and strength of the pelvic floor muscles thus addressing the root cause of urinary leakage.


Updated on May-09-22