“When you contract your pelvic floor, the bird goes up. When you relax it, the bird goes down.”
At some point, most peeps with vaginas come across Kegels. They’re pretty basic pelvic floor exercises — squeeze your pelvic muscles for a few seconds and relax them, repeatedly. So basic that you may very well be doing them as you read this … but probably aren’t.
Perifit is a Kegel exerciser that uses video games to make pelvic floor training and rehabilitation fun. Users insert the colourful medical grade silicone and CE-approved pelvic floor trainer into their vagina. Their Perifit then connects via Bluetooth to a video game app on their phone or tablet, and they can start playing hands-free.
“We are trying to create a future in which women can heal themselves effectively with amusing and effective products from the comfort of their home.” — Marie-Anne Dagues, Perifit
Perifit works as a biofeedback device, meaning that it provides players with real-time feedback on their performance. The bird or butterfly-like avatar flies from left to right across the screen to collect lotus-shaped tokens. By contracting their muscles around the device, players use Perifit as a joystick to control the flight height in the side-scroller multiplatform game, catching lotuses and avoiding obstacles.
It may be a game, but it’s no joke. The app training sessions are developed by doctors, and pelvic floor rehabilitation specialists were involved in every step of the design process. According to Perifit, many doctors recommend the device to their patients.
There are several training programmes available (and many levels to play) so that users can address specific issues like incontinence, Pelvic Organ Prolapse (POP), and postpartum recovery — although it’s important that patients with a pelvic floor condition speak to a healthcare professional before starting a training programme.
But you don’t need to have a condition to play the game. “Pelvic floor training has a deep impact on bladder control, organ support, and sexual wellbeing”, says Perifit, and the gamified Kegel exerciser can help anyone with a vagina keep their pelvic floor healthy, preventing dysfunctions and improving intimate wellbeing. And yes, stronger muscles make for stronger orgasms.
“We want to tackle diseases that are not yet well treated, we want to turn the most complicated technologies into simple products that can be used at home, we want to drastically reduce therapeutic wandering for women, and we want to improve women’s health and wellbeing like never before.” Marie-Anne Dagues, Perifit
The Perifit team thinks that there’s plenty of room for games in healthcare. Play can improve patient compliance and help people stay on track by “turning once boring treatment options into fun and engaging games.”
The exerciser comes at a cost (€129 at the time of writing) that can make it inaccessible to many. Yet Perifit assures that “maximizing our impact on women’s health is our goal, and to do so, being accessible is part of our mission.” Although they’re currently focusing on increasing production to meet demand, they’re planning to design a more affordable product soon.
Perifit isn’t the first product to put together tech, gamification, and pelvic floor health. However, according to its creators, it’s the only one that strengthens both superficial and deep pelvic floor muscles, and due to its especially sensitive sensors, it’s “the most precise device to teach proper pelvic floor contraction.”
Pelvic floors across the world seem to love their new personal trainer. Perifit is now shipping all over the globe and is the highest-rated Kegel exerciser on Amazon, Google Play, and the App Store. Intrigued? Perifit is preparing to launch two new “breakthrough products” this year.
AtlasAction: If Perifit tickled your fancy, you can buy it here.
Free Kegels are available to anyone, including men: ask a healthcare professional to help you get started. See a doctor specialising in pelvic floor rehabilitation if you suspect a pelvic dysfunction.
► Love games? Check out more playful projects that are making the future fun.
Cyril Haoudi & Artem Rodionov, co-founders
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