Holy mother of all things good. Clearly I’ve been doing this whole exercise thing wrong, because apparently some women can orgasm while working out.
On the one hand, it shouldn’t come as a surprise -- the physical exertion, increased blood flow, and tightening of the pelvic floor muscles during exercise aren’t all that different from what takes place between the sheets. On the other hand, who the hell is having sexy-time thoughts during a set of squats?
As a personal trainer who tries to convince people of the longer-term pleasures of exercise, I had to investigate. I won’t lie. I’d love to climb that hill during spin class.
It happens more often than you think
Believe it or not, EIOs aren’t new or rare. They were first documented by Alfred Kinsey in the 1953 book, “Sexual Behavior in the Human Female,” when approximately 5% of the women he interviewed mentioned the phenomenon. Yes, this is a trait unique to women, though it probably wouldn’t be too difficult for a man to find a way to orgasm at the gym if he really wanted to.
Then, in 2011, Dr. Debbie Herbenick published a study called “Exercise-induced orgasm and pleasure among women,” wherein 370 of the 530 study participants noted some level of EIO or exercise-induced sexual pleasure (EISP).
Given that the physical experience of self-reported incidents of EIO and EISP varied widely among participants from a mild “funny feeling” to a full blown climax, the true percentage of women maxing out at the gym is probably closer to Kinsey’s original assessment. What Herbenick’s study really adds to the body of knowledge is the whats, whens, and hows of the female coregasm. (Isn’t that what we all really want to know?)