Confessions of a Sex Educator, Intimacy and Relationships, Sexuality

Missionary to the Max

The missionary position seems to be the world’s go-to sexual position, so it must have something great goin’ for it, right? Yes, it does. It’s the perfect position for a lot of intimacy by offering the most skin-on-skin contact, long loving embraces, and the lovers can literally see eye-to-eye. That said, variety is also the spice of life. We may enjoy eating ice cream, but eating it day in and day out would eventually get a little boring. So, too, if we want to keep our romantic appetite alight. Adding a little variety to our sex life now and then can keep things from going stale. Sometimes, the missionary position gets a bad rap, especially in kinkier circles. I’m here to tell you that the missionary position, just because it’s common, does not have to be boring. Let’s see if we can maximize this old convention with a few simple moves.

FIRST A NOTE: Different people dub sex positions all sorts of names. And, if you’re brave enough to start googling different sex positions, please be aware that “guy’s” sites, “girl’s” sites, porn sites, sciencey sites, and the Kama Sutra will usually have different names for the same and similar positions. As Shakespeare once said, “What’s in a name? That which we call a rose by any other name would smell as sweet.”

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A fairly traditional missionary position.

Traditionally, the missionary position is considered the “male-superior position” because technically the man is on top as the giver and the woman, as the receiver, is on the bottom. Why? Because men typically, though not always, tend to have more upper-body strength and can often maintain this position with a close embrace longer. Excuse me, but “male” and “superior” sometimes just rubs me the wrong way. Teehee, rubs me the wrong way. No, but seriously, Folks. If you want to spice up the traditional missionary position, feel free try one or more of the following.

Adding Accessories

The easiest way to change things up with the missionary is to move your missionary to different sexy spots. Shake off the sheets and try the kitchen table, the sofa, or the stairs. You’re limited only by your imagination and physical abilities. Of course, if you prefer the bed, stay put and add accessories. One of the easiest and cheapest ways to spice things up is to move your bed’s pillows. What! Yes, it’s really that simple. Place a pillow under the small of your back. Push it down a little so that it’s under your butt. You may be surprised by the different sensations that are heightened with such small position changes. Be sure to throw a hand towel over the pillow; otherwise, be prepared to change the pillow cover. Just in case. You could even go all out and purchase a sex pillow (or “sex wedge”) for roughly $75-200 and explore the wonders of lots of different sex adventures. But, I digress…

You can also add pleasure aids — my personal métier. If you need a little extra clitoral stimulation, you may enjoy adding a small vibrator, like bullet, egg, or finger vibes, to really get things moving along. Try adding warming or cooling lubricants into the mix. Or, add a female arousal heightener. Hachacha! If you enjoy the missionary position with your legs lifted off the mattress, floor, or other sexy surface you’re playing on, but you have an achy lower back or experience difficulty holding the jack-knife position very long, you can also add thigh cuffs (not as scary as they sound or look, I promise) to help keep the pressure off of your lower back. Or again, try a sex pillow. Yes, I do adore my sex wedge.

Varying Your Missionary Position

Want him deeper? Lift up your legs and rest your ankles on his shoulders in what is sometimes called the “shoulder holder.” This allows for even deeper penetration and is especially helpful when you really enjoy feeling “fuller” or enjoy having your G-spot or even your cervix massaged, depending on where you are in your menstrual cycle. If this position is uncomfortable (i.e., if your man’s penis is sharply curved to the left or the right when it is erect), you may try shifting your hips to accommodate the curve.  If it feels uncomfortable because he feels “too deep,” you might like trying the a modified “butterfly” position, where only one ankle is resting on his shoulder and the crook of the other leg’s knee grasps his waist or simply rests on his leg or the bed/surface.

My personal fave for modifying the traditional missionary is the “pretzel.” To achieve this simple position, just lie on your left side as he straddles your left leg. You’ll then curl your right leg around his waist and voilà. You can also use your right leg as a hook to pull him in closer and deeper, iffin’ you’re of a mind to. If the thought of contorting sounds too much like sex gymnastics, it’s really super simple to start in the missionary position and then have both partners sort of “fall” sideways together so that you’re both lying down, still fully engaged, facing one another. You’ll get pretty much the same result, but then it’s called the “gift-wrapped” position — queue Shakespeare. Keep in mind though, that you’ll both need to be giving and receiving in this lazier [misnomer!] gift-wrapped missionary position.

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Taking the reigns. The Female Superior style of Missionary Sex.

Of course, it’s really easy to completely reverse the missionary position, putting the woman on top, making the woman the giver and the man the receiver. This should not be mistaken for the “reverse missionary.”¹ The woman-on-top style of missionary (also called the “cowgirl”), actually has several advantages for both partners. Not only does it allow the lovers to maintain eye and lip contact and loving embraces, it also frees up the woman’s range of motion so that she can control the depth of penetration, speed of thrust, and the overall rhythm of the love dance. This can be especially helpful for the woman who needs to control her own orgasm. Plus, it makes room for the man’s hands to caress his lover’s breasts and to stimulate, via hands or vibes, her clitoris.  Oh, and gals, trust me on this one, your man truly loves your jiggly bits, so do not be afraid to hop on top.

Questions about spicing up your sex life? Interested in introducing marital aids and accessories to the bedroom? Be sure to contact me for some advanced sexual health and pleasure education. And, above all, enjoy!


¹ The “reverse missionary” is the sexual position wherein the giver is on the bottom and the receiver is on top.


This post was prompted by a friend in the Blogosphere, author Linda Hill, who is offering (“Just Jot It January”) daily writing prompts for fellow bloggers. Today’s word prompt is “movement.”

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