Personal Health

This Is How Long Sex Actually Lasts For Most Couples

Worried your nighttime romps aren’t lengthy enough? Most couples aren’t doing it for as long as you might think, according to new data from Lovely, a sex toy and tracking app for couples. After collecting information from 432 couples and more than 2,000 sexual encounters, the company found that sex typically lasted only 12 minutes for the average couple.

Lots of other specific factors—like oral sex and the level of intimacy— which both contribute to a woman’s orgasm, weren’t specifically noted.

Still, 12 minutes seems…pretty short. If you take a look at the peer-reviewed studies out there (or, you know, if you just talk to your partner), you’ll find that many women need longer than 12 minutes to get off. Case in point: Straight women tend to orgasm less frequently when sex lasts less than 30 minutes, starting the clock at foreplay, according to a recent study from Chapman University. 

But the data presented by Lovely doesn’t clarify if the 12 minutes includes just penetration, or if foreplay was involved, too—and that makes all the difference. That’s because foreplay helps build arousal, which makes it easier for women to orgasm, according to Men’s Health sex advisor Debby Herbenick, Ph.D.

So, how can you extend your time in the sack in a way that gets both of you going? Here are three great moves to get you started.

1. Touch Everywhere

You both have all sorts of secret erogenous zones — like the neck, legs, and back — that are begging to be touched. Read up (and pass this guide to your partner, too) on how to give a great massage for specific tips and tricks. 

2. Make Oral Sex a Priority

In a recent study, 37 percent of women said they need clitoral stimulation to orgasm during sex. One of the best ways to work the thousands of nerve ending on the nub of your clitoris? You guessed it—cunnilingus. Have your partner give these oral sex moves a shot.

3. Experiment With Sex Toys

Find a sex toy that will help increase pleasure for the both of you, like this awesome couples massager.

All these techniques will get you revved up before intercourse even becomes a thing, increasing your chances of successfully coming once you move past foreplay. Just keep in mind that duration doesn’t always paint the whole picture. And it shouldn’t stress you out to the point of anxiety (after all, that could put a major block on your chance of orgasm.) 

One more tip: Occasionally trying new sex positions or having sex in a new place can make things just as fun if you want to switch it up—even if the sex doesn’t last as long. Some women even prefer to keep things short, since going too long can get boring and mess with lubrication.

This article originally appeared on Women’s Health

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