When it comes to having stamina in the sack, fitness fanatics definitely come out on top. But the sexual perks of working out are not limited to hardcore CrossFitters or marathoners, the subtle art of Pilates can definitely help you between the sheets.
Most people associate the Pilates Method with flat abs. But to get that toned torso, you have to work deep. I mean really deep. I am talking pelvic floor deep. Yep. That muscle group worked during Kegel exercises is also worked in Pilates. There’s a kind of neurological synergy between the pelvic floor and the transverses abdominis, the deepest layer of ab muscle. So when you pull your navel to your spine, like you do multiple times in every Pilates class, you should also be engaging your pelvic floor too. It’s like a Kegel but with an extra lift.
Regularly working the pelvic floor, often referred to as the “vagina muscles”—although men have pelvic floor muscles too—can lead to stronger, more satisfying orgasms, the pelvic floor muscles go off with your uterus and cervix during the contraction and release of orgasm. Squeezing these muscles during sex creates heightened sensations for your partner too. True story: many of my former clients’ husbands thanked me for teaching their wives this technique.
Beyond strengthening the deep muscles of the pelvic floor, Pilates helps mobilize the entire pelvis by unlocking tight hips and loosening lower spines. Releasing this area means the pelvis can rock up an down and move in all sorts of circles; many Pilates exercises involve elements of slo-mo twerking and little gyrations—good moves to learn. Gaining mobility in this region leads to more uninhibited motion. As we learned from our flirty floor workout, when you move sexy you feel sexy.
While stability is a core principal of Pilates, flexibility is too. Many Pilates exercises open up tight hips and legs, allowing them to move more freely and in greater ranges of motion.
The freedom in your joints and muscles means you can experiment with all sorts of interesting positions in the bedroom. Just try this Pilates inner-thigh workout! It strengthens the legs while lengthening tight hamstrings and adductors.
Pilates will also make you stronger all over, which is always a boon for sexy time. And while getting stronger, because Pilates focuses on the mind-body connection, these workouts help you understand your body better. And more body awareness leads to things all Pilates instructors teach clients like better posture and good form when lifting, but it can also lead to a more satisfying sex life.
For some women exercise can be a sexual experience. That is according to a new study from Indiana University, finding that exercise can lead to female orgasm. I can remember being in an indoor cycling class at a health club years ago, with a woman who moaned the entire time. The funny thing was she would start out the class in baggy sweat pants and sweatshirt and shed her clothes until she was down to short-shorts and a sports bra.
Thankfully, the guy on the bike next to her was her husband. Perhaps she was having what researchers featured on ScienceDaily.com call a “coregasm”. The referred-to study is published in an issue of Sexual and Relationship Therapy.
In fact Debby Herbenick, study researcher at Indiana University’s School of Health says,”The most common exercises associated with exercise-induced orgasm were abdominal exercises, climbing poles or ropes, biking/spinning and weight lifting.”
Not to mention, most of my clients report that exercise helps them to feel empowered and to have a positive body image. It is my experience as a trainer, that positive body image will have you exuding more sex appeal which can translate into a better sex life.
I knew the participants in my striptease class were exercising while perfecting ways to turn on their guys’ libido. But, for those who also stayed for my Pilates based core class, they will themselves “feel” the benefits and later effects of turning him on.
This newly documented research proves what I have known as a Pilates instructor. Your core muscles are not only are your powerhouse, helping you walk up steps and sit up straight, they are also the deep pelvic floor muscles that, if contracted during sex, can help you reach new heights.
The problem is that many women I find who walk into the Pilates studio for the first time, due to lifestyle, or lack of body awareness have a disconnect with their pelvic floor muscles. According to an article published in the Huffington Post, by Pilates Instructor, Corrie McCRae, “The pelvic floor is a group of muscles in your pelvis that support your bladder and uterus.
The bottom layer of muscle wraps around your vagina, anus and urethra. “
McCRae is the creator of “The Bad Girl Workout” which “is a Pilates-based exercise program specifically designed to jump start a girl’s sex life.” Finding that awareness deep in the pelvic floor muscles and learning to contract those muscles brings more body awareness. Working deep into the pelvis in Pilates class and transferring that knowledge into the bedroom can help escalate pleasure.
As far as the Exercise Induced Orgasm study findings, more than half of the pleasurable experiences occurred while doing abdominal exercises. This makes sense since Pilates works deeps into the abdominal and pelvic floor muscles.
Through a steady Pilates practice, you may start wanting sex both morning and night, and you will be outstanding at it. This is the goal anyway. I’ll break it down by using several Pilates principles by way of example.
If the pelvic floor muscles, which are a part of the core, are strong, then you’ll be able to increase tension, master movements and orgasm upon your command. Since I’ve become a Pilates instructor, one of the many beautiful side effects is my ability to contract and release at will. Pilates sure is empowering!
If you’re not sure where or what the pelvic floor muscles are, then as you continue to read this, pretend you’re going to pee your pants and then stop the flow of your pretend pee. Those are them.
Pilates exercises involve coordinating the breath with each movement. Emphasis is made on expansive inhalations and exhalations, which brings oxygenated blood to the muscles faster. When we can do this correctly, it leads to an increased blood flow to the sex organs. And let’s face it, who among us wants to suck wind when we’re having sex. I’d rather be sucking something else. Whoa, easy tigress. All I’m saying is that Improved breath will increase stamina.
Controlled panting is what you want, and Pilates is a perfect way to practice that control. Since the system calls for muscle control, so as to perform each exercise accurately and precisely, you become more aware of how your body moves and the function that each muscle has within that movement.
Pilates is a mind-body system, so there’s a mental component. In teaching, I use imagery to achieve correct form. This requires a great deal of focus and concentration from my clients. I use different images when I’m in bed, but I am focused nonetheless. I’m looking for impeccable form without extraneous movement, just like Pilates requires. It’s maximum sexual efficiency.
I’m not saying that by doing Pilates, it can turn you into a contortionist, but I can guarantee an increase in flexibility. The hip joints especially are worked in many of the exercises. Being able to get your legs over your head, or splay them out like a wishbone, can be very erotic. Your partner will undoubtedly be impressed.
Stability plays a vital role in Pilates, where one’s core and balance is continuously being challenged. Don’t you think it would enhance playtime, if you were able to stabilize yourself in certain sexual positions? Doggie style comes to mind, which requires balancing on all fours (some of us in the biz call this quadruped) while your partner thrusts, bumps and grinds, trying to shake your foundation.
Mr. Pilates designed a piece of equipment called the cadillac, which includes an attachment called the trapeze. It allows for super fun movement. I have a feeling that Mr. Pilates knew exactly what he was doing when he brought out the trapeze.
I believe, or I’d like to believe anyway, that he wanted us to practice on the trapeze, so that we might take those moves into our bedrooms and hang from the rafters, if you’re an extreme sport type of person that is. Or so that you might fulfill your childhood dream of joining the circus.
Practicing Pilates has been shown to help with erectile dysfunction. I know nothing about this, given that my lover has the stamina and control of an 18-year-old, or that of Sting. Since my boyfriend also practices Pilates, E.D. isn’t his problem. Locking the front door when he leaves the house is his problem. We all have our crosses to bear.
Now get into the Pilates studio, so that you can mount your partner with confidence, zest, and without the fear of pulling a groin muscle. An important part of a healthy relationship is a great sex life. As the popularity of Pilates, a mind-body conditioning method of exercise developed by Joseph H. Pilates, has increased, people have become more aware of its many benefits. These include, but are not limited to, increased muscle strength and tone, improved flexibility and balance, and a longer, leaner body shape. What most people don’t know about are the many ways Pilates will improve their sex life.
Whether you are a man or a woman, here are 8 ways that you can benefit from Pilates.
- Pilates increases physical stamina. A key element to Pilates is muscle control. Joseph H. Pilates originally called his form of exercise “contrology”. The exercises are not done quickly. Control is the focus rather than speed. It’s not how fast you do the exercises that produces results, it’s technique. Pilates gives you steady strength and stamina during sexual activity allowing for a longer, more intimate experience.
- Your body is your exercise equipment. Unlike working out with machines at the gym, in Pilates you are using your own body weight to perform the exercises. This is especially true with Pilates mat work, which was the original method of Joseph H. Pilates. Because sexual activity often requires you to use and sometimes support your own body weight, you will be able to enjoy yourself without any physical discomfort and will not become easily fatigued.
- Pilates teaches you to be fully present. We are all familiar with how being fully present or “in the moment” enhances our life experiences. This is especially true during sex. One of the first things you learn with Pilates is focus and concentration. In order to work your body correctly, safely, and efficiently, you must concentrate throughout the exercises. You can not be thinking about your to do list, you must be fully present. Pilates trains your body and mind to be totally present. This will carry into the bedroom, enabling your to be totally present with your partner for a more intimate and enjoyable experience.
- Greater flexibility means more creativity. Pilates gives you more muscle flexibility and improves the health of your joints. This allows you to get into positions you previously thought to be impossible. It also increases back and hip flexibility, eliminating the back pain some people suffer from during sex.
- Increase blood flow equals more intense orgasms. Pilates focus on “scooping” or pulling the “navel to the spine” brings increased blood flow to the pelvic area. This continuous rush of fresh blood and oxygen to the sexual organs results in an increase in libido and more intense orgasms.
- Pilates reduces your stress level. One of the main reasons couples do not have sex more often is stress. The Pilates method of breathing teaches you breath control. It was designed to cleanse the bloodstream through oxygenation, by bringing fresh blood to all of the cells. This method of breathing not only increases your physical health, it also reduces your blood pressure and triggers a relaxation response in the brain. Less stress equals more sex.
- When you feel attractive you are less inhibited. When you are physically fit and toned it gives you more self-confidence. Hesitation in sex has a lot to do with body image. You can’t have great sex if you’re self-conscious about your body. Pilates teaches you to love your body and appreciate its unique strength, beauty and power. This allows you to be less worried about body image and have more fun.
- Pilates enables you to have a great sex life for decades. Sexual dysfunction in both men and women in their later years is often due to a prolapsed uterus or bladder. Pilates focuses on the deep, unseen muscles of the abdomen and the pelvic floor, strengthening the muscles that support your internal organs. This benefit along with increased overall muscle strength, greater flexibility, healthy joints and greater self-confidence means that Pilates contributes to a great sex life well into your golden years!
The wonderful thing about Pilates is that it was developed by a man to benefit both men and women. It is also a method of exercise that was designed for anyone to do, from a beginner to the most advanced athlete.
Women Fitness brings to its readers a complete resource how Pilates workouts lead to better orgasms.