In my attempts to get everyone up off their couch and exercising to improve their sex life, here is part two of of “Shape Up for Sex.” Part One describes two easy stretches and exercises vital for maintaining flexibility important for your sex life. A much earlier post, “Do you have 2 minutes for Sex?” gives a basic rag-doll stretch that helps relieve muscle tightness from your ankles up to the back of your neck. Check both of these out if you haven’t already. Here, we have two more stretches and two more exercises to incorporate into your day. They are simple, don’t require any special equipment, and definitely contribute to increased strength and stamina in your sex life.

The first stretch is a stretch of the quadratus lumborum muscle of the lower back. Many people experience tightness in this muscle, but don’t know of an effective way of relieving this tension. I find this method to be the most simple, straightforward, and safest way to stretch this muscle. You begin by standing straight up and crossing your right foot in front of your left foot. You may choose to position yourself next to the arm of the couch if you need to hang on to something. Next, you bend your body slowly to the left side until you feel the stretch in your right lower back. Make sure that you are bending straight to the side and not bending your body forward. Next, hold this position for between 30-60 seconds. Remember that in order to have an effective stretch, you need to hold it more than 30 seconds with no bouncing. Then switch legs and stretch to the other side.

The next stretch is the child’s pose from yoga. This is another wonderful stretch for both the lower back, as well as the upper back and shoulders. You start by kneeling and sitting back onto your feet. Then you bend your body forward with your arms stretched out in front of you. As you exhale, lower your head until your forward touches the floor. Then relax into this stretch and hold this position for one minute.

And now for the exercises. We will start with push ups. These build strength that not only help men stabilize themselves in positions when they are on top, but also can be helpful for women especially when trying positions such as being on all fours, or seated on top of her partner and using her arms to hold the back of a chair or couch. The goal is to be able to do 3 sets of 10 push ups. If you cannot do 10 consecutively, do as many as you can and work your way up over time. If you are not strong enough to do one full push up, which is the case for many women, you can place your knees on the floor and push up from there instead of your toes. The most important thing about push ups is to keep your body straight (as in the plank position) and not lift up your hips.

The last exercise today concentrates on your thighs. At first, it seems quite simple. But after several repetitions, you will feel the work out in your muscles. Start by squatting on the floor with your feet about shoulder width apart and the palms of your hands flat on the floor. From this position, you will push your palms into the floor as you straighten your legs. The motion ends when you have straightened your legs as much as you can while still keeping your hands flat on the floor. Your goal for this exercise is to do 3 sets of 30 repetitions. Like the push ups, if you cannot do a full 30 repetitions, do as many as you can and work your way up to 30 over time.

For those who already have a regular workout routine, adding these simple stretches and exercises add to your strength and flexibility for a variety of sex positions. For those who do not have a regular workout routine, these are simple movements that take only a few minutes a day and will maintain your sexual fitness. So use these and put yourself in optimal shape for good sex.

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