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Satisfying the opposite sex sexually can be a ‘pressing’ concern for many. When two lovers first meet, the desire to be intimate and the sexual passion each provokes in the other may override any lack of bedroom finesse or lovemaking skills either may have. Indeed, sex for most couples is, at least initially, a wonderful experience marked by intense desire and a longing for release and immediate gratification. But the things we enjoy seldom last forever, and the frequency and intensity of our lovemaking and the exhilaration we feel each time we have sex may gradually fade. As sexual relations become routine (as is the case in a majority of long-term relationships), a willingness to ‘engage’ becomes less of a priority. Due to a lack of bedroom communication, the spark that prompted many a passionate embrace slowly begins to diminish (if we do not up-skill our sexual performances, paying particular attention to giving our partner the sex he or she really wants, that is).


Lifting one’s sexual game may not simply require greater frequency, or at least a more intensive version of the same sexual satisfaction one’s partner receives each time they hit the sheets. For most guys, the prospect of achieving sexual release (whenever it happens to occur) is the ‘driving’ motivational force which creates energy commensurate with their need to become sexually fulfilled; for women, passionate sex is still very important but their desire for release must be tempered with more foreplay, touching, and the conditions that enable them to experience a longer and more satisfying encounter. So, what are the right sexual conditions for each sex and how might we achieve what we want sexually while giving our partners the satisfaction they desire? Further, how might the physical attraction we feel for our partners influence our desire to sex them up? To upgrade your sexual performance to ensure both you and your partner maintain an active, satisfying sex life, keep reading.

What a girl (and guys) want  
Unlike women, who typically enjoy sex when they are mentally, emotionally and physically ready, men are keen to go whenever the urge hits, which is often. Beyond debate is the fact that men think about and desire sex more than women. Anecdotally and according to most prominent sex-health researchers, the majority of men under 60 think about sex at least twice a day, while only a quarter of women report such frequent sexual thoughts.  Whereas women, early in a relationship, may initiate sex and desire it as often as their male counterparts, men, on average, display the same pattern at the beginning, during, and even in the late stages of a dwindling liaison. Though many theories have been posited as to why men tend to be more sexually aggressive (they have more testosterone, which stimulates sexual functioning, are biologically ‘programmed’ to seek out multiple partners to procreate, thus passing on their genetic material, and are natural ‘alpha male’ initiators who are expected to take charge sexually), such rationalizing does not help women, who must be ready before they can enjoy the passionate sex that men so often take for granted. Women, it appears, need more fuel to fire the passion that leads to sex.

To keep the passion in their relationship alive, men and women must come to understand how the other thinks about sex, as this will ensure that their performance is adjusted to accommodate the different sexual requirements each has. Because most women consider intimacy, closeness and caring to be a turn-on and a prerequisite to good sex, men must take the time to romance their partners, to connect, talk and establish the right conditions before their own needs can be met. For men, sex is a significant way for them to demonstrate love for their partners; the physical act of lovemaking serves to express their intimate sides, to show they care for the ladies in their lives. Women, with their genetic proclivity to selecting the right mate, prefer to take it slow both when choosing a sexual partner and during the act itself (with conversation, holding, caressing, and extended foreplay sessions preempting their sexual encounters) while men, whose job it is to spread their genetic material far and wide, are eager to get right down to the business end of sex. Each approach is of equal importance for ensuring long-term sexual satisfaction for both sexes.

Taking the time
Women, to the eternal frustration of men everywhere, typically take longer to become sufficiently sexually aroused and this can lead to a loss of interest for men, or a perception that they are not working hard enough to prime their partners for satisfying sex. For men who feel this way, take note: women, though equally as passionate about lovemaking and who enjoy sex as much as men do, have a more variable sex drive compared to men, who are thought to have a fixed, biologically determined sexual appetite that is, by comparison, relatively insensitive to context. Women, as a result, are less likely to become spontaneously sexually aroused (compared to men who are more likely to become horny at the drop of a hat). The quality of a woman’s relationship with a potential sexual partner is also an important precursor to the enjoyment she may experience during sex; she must like her man, not just for the way he looks, but for the positive character traits he possesses. On the other hand, men are more likely to fantasize about having sex with strangers, and as long as his lady has a pulse he is good to go. Though sex with their partners is ultimately more satisfying for most men, if this cannot be achieved they will often mentally create enticing scenarios or, less frequently, they may commit adultery. While men tend to require any sex frequently, women require planned, less spontaneous sex less often.  The quality of the experience is, for women, more important than the physical act alone. By making a woman feel as though she is important and cared for and through taking the time to romance, communicate with and stimulate their partners via lengthy foreplay (massage, oral sex, teasing, and masturbation) a man’s chances of between the sheets action will be dramatically improved.


While the sexual act itself can last anywhere from five minutes to an hour (or longer), it is, for women, the moments leading up to and (in many cases) immediately following sexual release for the male that are most important. A prolonged period of sensuous touch followed by an extended bout of oral sex will have most women ready for action. While men may reach orgasm in as little as 2-5 minutes (with minimal, if any, foreplay), women take much longer. So men must take the time to prepare their partners for sex and to ensure they are adequately stimulated, even after they themselves have achieved orgasm. Men may think of mutually satisfying sex as two sexual acts: the one during which he receives release and the one where his partner achieves her own satisfaction (this may ‘come’ before or after he has experienced his own).

Cutting to the chase
So we have learned what men have known all along: that sex with women is often a complex balancing act, a lengthy process involving a confluence of factors, each priming her for sexual release. But what about the men and their need for release? Since it is widely known that most men would rather pull their teeth out with a steak knife than wait an eternity for sexual gratification, how might both sexes reach a compromise that promotes mutual fulfillment? While most men have the control needed to hold out while they please their partners, very few possess the patience required to forego orgasm entirely (as in not getting any sex at all). So the real problem for the man then becomes frequency of sex rather than how long he must wait for his partner to become properly aroused. Thus, his getting what he desires comes with one major caveat: his partner must first be receptive to his advances. A major concern in many long-term relationships is the mutual desire to become sexually active. Even when both parties agree to sex, if one does so reluctantly (just to please the other) both will usually lose out.

Contrary to what men like to think, even the most sexually deprived man will find it hard to enjoy sex if his partner is not fully participating. While a woman who is having an off-day may fake orgasm, a man cannot do this and he may, as a result, experience performance anxiety if he feels his partner is not receptive to his ‘lothario-like’ skills; over time, such a state can, if not addressed, lead to sexual impotence, a catastrophe for mutual long-term sexual satisfaction. If a man feels his partner is not appreciating his performance, he may begin to doubt his abilities and reaching orgasm may eventually become impossible. So the real key to ensuring both sexes experience a rewarding love life is to create the conditions necessary for mutual appreciation and enjoyment of sex. First, if both sexes have busy schedules (extremely common today) then a sex roster can be negotiated which suits both (how many times per week, for how long, and what each partner would like to experience can be discussed and outlined). Second, mutual respect and trust must be apparent throughout all areas of the relationship (remember guys, good sex begins well before you and your partner begin lovemaking and if your lady is not happy in a general sense she may not be inspired to have sex, period). Third, do not complain that your partner takes longer than you to get ready for sex (although we may have to wait longer than we would like, the payoff for us men is well worth what is only really a minor delay, and delayed gratification is a positive way to build sexual tension, which may result in a more powerful orgasm).

So, cutting to the chase to attain immediate sexual fulfillment may not be the best strategy for men, especially when satisfying their partners is likely to promote a better relationship, more frequent sex, and, ultimately, greater mutual satisfaction. And women, understand that your partner has a greater need to experience rapid sexual release, so do not assume he is using you to seek self-gratification. Should he achieve orgasm faster than you, this is not a sign that he is interested in merely his own pleasure. It is just the way he functions on a biological level; he is genetically driven to impregnate, fast. In the end, both sexes should ‘come together’ to reach a compromise wherein both receive sexual pleasure irrespective of however long this may take.

Physical attraction 
Biological imperatives (which dictate sexual variability and preferences) aside, are men and women seeking sex as influenced by looks as they are by context? Certainly for women, attractiveness is, at first, an important indication of whether a man is suitable sexual material; her maternal instincts, at this point, will inform her as to whether a potential mate is from genetic stock that has a better chance of creating healthy offspring. Thus, muscularity and a healthy appearance influence her decisions on matters sexual. Bottom line: a man who is fit and active, and whose physique reflects this fact, is far and away more likely to get laid by comparison to one who is slovenly in appearance, and who does not take care of his body.


Like women, men also are turned on by looks (a healthy appearance, firm butt, full breasts and nice muscle tone are, for the fitness-minded male, particularly attractive female attributes). Ultimately all good relationships are built on a solid foundation of mutual trust, admiration, respect and loyalty, but let’s be honest: how attracted to our partners we are heavily influences our sexual relations with them. By staying in shape, both sexes become magnets for the wandering eyes of potential sexual partners, or can maintain the passion within their relationships for longer. Further, by being in shape we show that we are committed to taking care of our health and fitness. Not only is such high level conditioning (replete with staying power and muscle endurance) conducive to successful sexual escapades, it often means our attention to detail is refined (and attention to detail is needed to sexually satisfy our partners; we must know which buttons to push and be able to observe what is working sexually, and what is not).  Thus, being in shape helps us to perform better while encouraging our lovers to give us more of what we want.
Wanting sex and achieving it are mutually exclusive in that one may not necessarily lead to the other. To receive satisfying sex we must bring about the conditions necessary to ensure our partners are ready meet us half way. So, it is important that we treat them well to build within them the desire to meet our sexual needs. To do this we must also work hard to satisfy them sexually, too. When both partners are ready for sex and the conditions are right, both may benefit from the exchange. Men: be aware that your partner may take longer to prepare for sex; do not rush the process; cultivate a warm relationship where mutual affection is at all times present. Women: understand that your man has a desire for immediate sexual fulfillment, so understand his urgency to get you into bed. He is following his biological dictates, just as you are.

As the great Arnold Schwarzenegger once said, experiencing a muscle pump is as pleasurable as having sex with a woman and coming. Though Arnold’s thoughts on this matter are debatable, what cannot be denied is that one (pumping iron) can definitely lead to the other (having sex). By getting in shape we create an appearance that attracts the opposite sex and by staying in shape we can get more sex, more often.  So, in reviewing all of the above, if you treat your partner well, understand the sexual differences between you and your lover, and work to enhance your health and fitness, you may enjoy a long and successful sex life.

Baumeister, R.F. (2000). “Gender Differences in Erotic Plasticity: The Female Sex Drive as Socially Flexible and Responsive.”  Psychological Bulletin, 126(3), 347-74.

Sine, R. Sex Drive: How Do Men and Women Compare? WebMD. [Online]  retrieved on 1.7.13

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