You know that stretching is good for your bod. It reduces muscle tension, increases flexibility, and improves your posture, among other benefits. While you might stretch before and after a workout at the gym, did you know that stretching daily is great for your sex life, too? According to Hakika Wise, founder and CEO of Kika Stretch Studios, if you want better sex—and who doesn’t?—it’s time to add limbering up to your lovemaking routine.
“If you want to improve your stamina for sex, then stretching should be something that you incorporate into your life daily,” she told HelloGiggles.
Because tension in the body has the potential to affect your libido, as well as make it difficult for you to fully relax—and feeling relaxed is integral to good sex—stretching is recommended for those looking to boost their bedroom acrobatics.
While stretching is usually something most of us skip on the daily, knowing that it could improve your sex life might give you the incentive to hit the mat more often.
So how exactly does stretching improve your sex life? First of all, it improves your range of motion.
You saw a kinky sex position on TV or the internet that looked amazing. However, when you and your partner attempted to try it, you both pulled a muscle and instantly killed the mood. The solution? Stretch, of course.
Because the more flexible you are, the more comfortable you will be trying a new position without causing injury to yourself or your partner.
Stretching also boosts blood flow.
Having trouble getting aroused in bed? It might be due to your blood flow, or lack thereof. Insufficient blood flow to the genital area can contribute to female orgasmic problems as well as to erectile dysfunction.
“Blood circulation is directly correlated with your level of arousal,” Wise said. “Stretching your hip and leg area sends great amounts of blood flowing through your pelvic area. When people are inactive, their blood flow decreases and their arteries become stiff. Increasing blood flow to your pelvic area opens up the arteries and sends a fresh and healthy flow of blood to the areas that need repair.”
It elevates your energy, too.
Because stretching increases circulation of blood and oxygen to your muscles, it can also help improve energy levels and vitality.
“Stretching naturally boosts your energy levels and will give you more stamina than before,” said Wise. And everyone knows the difference between so-so sex and so-great sex is stamina.
Here are some exercises to try tonight. (They’re super simple, we promise.)
Wise recommends using a technique she developed called The Kika Method if you want to add some stretches to your daily routine. The Kika Method is a form of passive stretching, which Wise said can alleviate tension in the body.
She described passive stretching as technique in which you are relaxed and don’t force your range of motion. A passive stretch is one where you assume a position and hold it with some other part of your body, like holding your knee up to your chest with your hand, or with the assistance of a partner or some other apparatus, like the floor.
“Whereas active stretching consists of fast and jerky movements, passive stretching…allows the body to fully relax, because it does not require the muscles to engage,” Wise said.
As for go-to stretching positions that you can try at home or at the gym to improve your sex life, Wise recommended two.
“Start kneeling on your knees and place your elbows down in front of you. Keep your ankles and feet together and slowly slide open your knees until you feel a good stretch. Slowly drop your pelvis down to intensify the stretch,” she said.
The other one involves simple hip rotations to promote flexibility in your lower torso. “Start standing hip-width apart,” Wise said. “Imagine you have a hula hoop around your waist and slowly circle your hips in a complete circle. When you do this, try to isolate the rest of your body and only move your hips. Do this a few times, then rotate to the other side.”
As for how often you should stretch, Wise recommended stretching post-workout and every morning as soon as you get out of bed “to get the blood flowing.”
Most of all, “Take your time,” she said. “Slowly go into stretches and never force them beyond your comfort level. And have fun! Turn on your favorite style of music and have fun with it. Allow your body to move and follow its lead. Your body knows where the tension is.”