Why do we think nothing about popping to the gym to exercise the muscles in our legs, arms and core, but the mere mention of exercising our pelvic floor (perhaps the most important muscles us woman should exercise) and we flush with embarrassment?
In the Britain the pelvic floor seems to be shrouded with taboo, yet with one in three woman in the UK suffering from bladder problems it ‘s a topic that we should all become familiar with.
The pelvic floor is a broad sling of muscles, ligaments and sheet-like tissues that goes from your pubic bone, to the base of your spine and can stretch in response to weight (such as the weight of a full bladder or baby during pregnancy) and spring back in to shape. The problem is, when your pelvic floor bears weight for a long time, as it does during pregnancy, the muscles or tissues can become overstretched and weak. It’s this weakening of the muscle that causes bladder problems such as accidental peeing when you cough, sneeze, jump or laugh. Which is why keeping our pelvic floor strong, by exercising the muscle regularly, is so important.
Last month British technology startup Chiaro launched Elvie – a revolutionary, wearable technology, designed by woman for woman. Developed specifically to strengthen your pelvic floor muscles, this intelligent pelvic floor exercise tracker combines an insertable, sensor-packed device and an app.
But what really makes Elvie stand out from the crowed of pelvic floor exercisers, is that it uses a patented system of force and motion sensors to monitor how your muscles are working while you performs a pelvic lift. Which means, you can monitor your performance on your smartphone while doing the exercises! And since many women unknowingly perform the exercise incorrectly, the device includes a motion sensor that checks that one is doing it right. Totally genius if you ask me.
“The pelvic floor is the last uncharted territory in women’s health” says Tania Boler, Co-founder & CEO of Chiaro, who was inspired to make the device after discovering via her French husband that every women in France gets specialist treatment to strengthen her pelvic floor muscles after childbirth (in the UK there is no such service). ‘‘It’s still a “taboo” subject. ‘’she says ‘’ Yet Elvie is for all women, not only for those with personal health issues. Strong pelvic muscles lead to a strong core – being strong on the outside and the inside is key to being a woman.”So what did I think? The Elvie is as simple in practice as it is in design. Simply download the app on to your smart phone, turn on your bluetooth and squeeze the Elvie to connect it to the app. Once inserted, the app will talk you through the process starting with a set of practice exercises (from lifting to pulsing) so you can get familiar with your Elvie before moving on to the training programs.
The motion sensors were a real winning point. In the past, I had always been unsure as to whether I had been performing my pelvic floor exercises correctly but the Elvie makes it very clear as to what exercise you are doing, and how to do it. I also really like the fact that the exercises have been set up in a computer game format, which spurned me on to continuously better my LV score.
Sleek, discreet and effect, every woman should have her own Elvie. After all isn’t it about time we broke the pelvic floor taboo!
…Oh, and just incase your still not convinced, another added benefit of regular pelvic floor exercise? Better sex.
Elvie retails at £149 and is available via www.elvie.com .
Do you find talking about your pelvic floor embarrassing or should we be breaking the taboo? Share your thoughts in the comments below.