We already know that doing physical exercise and having an active life improve health. But that’s not all, as Good Health also improves sex drive and performance. How should we make the most of this valuable information? By finding the sports that are most beneficial to our sex life and doing them!
What makes us good or bad lovers depends on a myriad of factors including, at times, the simple question of compatibility. But is there anything that, generally speaking, makes us better in bed? For sure, being in good shape helps, and it helps a lot.
The more muscle mass we have, the more strength and physical power we have too, plus daily exercise or a healthy lifestyle gives us better lung capacity, improved cardiac health and releases hormones, such as dopamine which improves mood. And if this weren’t enough, feeling and looking better boosts our self-esteem and, as a consequence, enhances how we relate to others. Win-win.
Sexologist and psychiatrist Walter Ghedin links physical and emotional wellbeing to physical exercise, a combination which also applies to sexual relationships. It turns out sex and sport are more similar than we thought! In turn, Ghedin lists the types of sport which are best for sexual performance: aerobic, intrapersonal and aesthetic. Three factors which inject seriously better sexual engagement into our hottest encounters. In terms of aerobic exercise, the frontrunners are running, swimming, exercise classes, and power sports like basketball. For intrapersonal sports, yoga, pilates and pole-dancing (forget its stereotype) all help to reduce our preconceptions about our own body. As for the aesthetic ones, strength training and outdoors sports are the winners.
Want to choose a sport to improve your sex life?
We’ll make it easy for you: One list, ten sports and a whole life to discover which one makes you feel like a better lover. Willing to give it a go?
Running | How do you get on with running?
People with a penis, pay attention: a study carried out by Harvard University showed that doing 30 minutes of aerobic exercise every day, such as running or fast walking, reduced the risk of erectile dysfunction in men by 50%. In other words, you need to run to come!
Swimming | Splish splash
If you believe that one of the reasons your sex life has wilted might be age: nope, you’re wrong. There are no excuses when it comes to pleasure. In another Harvard study on 160 men and women who swam on a regular basis, the over 60s reported sex lives which were comparable to when they were in their 40s. So now you know. Dive in!
Aerobics classes | Make your body smile
“Aerobic exercise decreases vascular risk factors (cholesterol, triglycerides, glycaemia, cortisol) which predispose a person to narrowed arteries and cause problems with lubrication, erections and orgasm,” explains Ghedin. “In terms of mood, aerobic workouts increase dopamine, which boosts sexual desire,” he adds. Get that body moving!
Sports for explosive exercise | Go for it!
An article published in The Journal of Sexual Medicine compared 25 female basketball and volleyball players aged between 20 and 45 who were sexually active to other women of the same age. It was possible to demonstrate that regularly practising these sports contributed to increased blood flow to the clitoris, which boosts feminine sexual function. The clitoris may be small, but it’s a big player.
Yoga | Mmmmmeditate
A study carried at in the Loyola University Health System, USA, demonstrated that yoga, when practised as a couple, stimulates sexual relationships as it strengthens confidence, relaxation, and fun. “This discipline is very useful for people who are subject to high levels of stress,” continues Walter Ghedin. “Stress activates the sympathetic nervous system over the parasympathetic, which leads to sex becoming a feared or threatening situation and prevents the person from giving themselves over to sexual play in a free and relaxed way,” the doctor points out. We are also going to point out the repertoire of complicated positions you could work on, because sometimes it’s good to give the missionary position a break.
Pilates | Find your balance
“In only twelve months, women who do Pilates generally improve sexual function in all senses: excitement, lubrication, orgasm and satisfaction,” states Daniel Tangona, specialist in sport management and personal trainer.
Pole Dancing | A shot of self-esteem
Don’t be surprised to see Pole Dancing featuring in this list because it is a physical exercise that helps people shed any body preconceptions they may have and to move in a more sensual way. The acrobatic moves performed around the vertical pole train coordination, shape your figure and improve flexibility. This exercise is becoming more popular all the time and in recent years has managed to lose a lot of the stigma it once had. It’s also good for slimming: you use between 300 and 500 calories per class.
Moderate strength training | Strong and intense
“Exercises which increase and tone muscle mass, and also shape the body (in line with classic aesthetic standards), increase self-esteem and serve to boost the ego. They contribute to general wellbeing and not just to achieving culturally-accepted models of beauty,” defends Walter Ghedin.
Body Lifting | Much stronger
Lift weights like a professional and increase your resistance in certain positions. Nothing worse than having to stop when you’re having fun just because your body lets you down, right?
Get outside | Everything’s better with some sun
Sunshine stimulates vitamin D production, which is essential for making testosterone (the hormone which increases libido, fundamental for the sex life of both men and women). So, tennis, surfing, volleyball, or any other outdoors activity can reap rewards in the bed. Make sure you go out for more than just a beer.
And you? Do you do any of these sports? Have you noticed an increase in your sex drive since you started? Tell us your best habits and experiences below.