The Best Sex Positions for Every Situation
Learn surprising stances to increase the possibilities in your bedroom
By Sarah Jio
Got pain? Pregnancy wishes? Confidence issues in the sack? We have a position for all that! We spoke to top female sexual health experts to hear their recommendations about the best positions for the most common sexual health concerns. Get ready to meet your new favorite moves.
The Best Position for Baby-Making While it’s true that you can get pregnant from all kinds of sexual positions, there is one that health experts frequently recommend as the way to increase your odds of becoming pregnant, and that’s the “missionary” position (male on top) with a “pelvic tilt,” says Amy Levine, a New York City–based sex coach, certified sexuality educator and founder of SexEdSolutions.com. “Putting a pillow under the tush can help elevate your pelvis, and create a slide effect—providing an easy path for his swimmers to make their way through your cervix on their journey to your ovum,” she says. “Typically, women who try this tend to maximize the ejaculation, since it stays in their body a little longer compared to positions in which you’re upright, allowing the semen to drip out of the vagina.” And, don’t forget to orgasm, says Ava Cadell, a sex educator and founder of Loveology University in Los Angeles. “She is more likely to get pregnant if she climaxes,” she says.
The Best Position to Help Women Build Confidence in Bed Maybe you feel insecure in the sack and could use a move that can help you feel more confident and in control? If so, Debby Herbenick, PhD, author of Because It Feels Good: A Woman’s Guide to Sexual Pleasure and Satisfaction, has a suggestion for you. Memorize these three words, she says: you on top. “It can be confidence-building because it physically helps women to be in control,” she says. “Make sure to do it your way, though. Woman on top can be done kneeling, squatting, facing forward or facing backward, so show off whatever you or he loves most about your body.”
The Best Position for Most Female Pleasure Gals, are you ready for this? Dr. Herbenick says the position that provides the most female pleasure may be a move you’ve never even tried! It’s called the coital alignment technique. “This is a wonderful variation on missionary and one of the few sex positions that has ever been researched and found to be helpful for women who would like to orgasm during sex,” she says. “It involves the guy sliding himself forward, with his shoulders past yours, and your pelvic areas grinding and not thrusting so much. This targets more stimulation on a woman’s clitoris, making it easier for some women to feel pleasure and possibly orgasm.”
The Best Position for Long-Lasting Sex While premature ejaculation is a medical condition that your guy may need to seek treatment for, there are positional tricks you can try to help him increase his staying power. According to Levine, the missionary position (again, guy on top) may be the key to helping your partner last longer. “It can work for him if he has trouble going the distance,” she says. “The key is that he’s in an easy position to stop and start when his arousal is increasing at a fast rate, and can take it down a notch so he can last longer.” Want to vary the missionary position a bit? Try this idea from Cadell. “The ‘fox’ position is a variation of missionary, in which the woman’s legs go all the way up and over her lover’s shoulders,” she says. “Penetration of the vagina is very deep in this position. She is contained in the boundaries of his body and he can dive totally inside her, maintaining his arousal and lasting longer.”
The Best Position for Women Who Experience Pain with Intercourse There are often few quick fixes for intercourse-related pain; however, consider these two ideas that can help improve your intimate experiences. First, be sure to use lots of water-based lubricant, says Dr. Herbenick. Second, if pain is an issue, it’s important that you keep the reins, so to speak, in your hands. It’s why Dr. Herbenick, and other experts, recommend the woman-on-top position. “It gives the woman more control over taking sex at a pace that is comfortable for her.”
The Best Position If Your Guy Is Well-Endowed Looking for more “oh”s than “ouch”s? Here’s your move: “The guy lies on his side; she lies perpendicular to him with legs spread as they rest over his body,” Dr. Herbenick explains. “This allows her to hold the base of his shaft if she wants to limit his range of motion, and allows her to use pelvic rocks to create an in-and-out sensation.” Levine says that women whose partners have “lengthy penises” love this position because “they can control how much of him will penetrate her, and can create pleasurable sensations for both without the cramping and discomfort that can happen when he hits her cervix during intense thrusting.”
The Best Position for Small Penises Experts are quick to point out that penis size is a very minor part of a satisfying sex life, yet there are certain positions sex therapists recommend more often when a man has a smaller penis. The best? Woman on top, says Levine. But here’s the key: “You need to gyrate on him rather than move up and down, or else he’s likely to slip out,” she says. “Missionary can also help, with your legs up on his shoulders. This allows him to penetrate you deeper, making the most of his size.”
Sarah Jio is the health and fitness blogger for Glamour.com. Visit her blog, Vitamin G.
WD wants to answer your toughest sex questions! Submit your most pressing sexual questions to email@example.com, and we will address the topic in an upcoming article—anonymity guaranteed.