No locker-talk, no “sexperts”, no I-heard-it-from-my-buddy-second-hand-BS—there’s a real scientific study that looked into how improve sex if you have back pain, and we’re going to break it down for you.
The study, published in Spine, took a hands-on approach. In this case, that means they hooked up ten health heterosexual partners to reflective markers that acted as sensors—basically, motion-capture technology—and had them perform five different sex positions in order to model the motion of their spines.
In general, people with back pain want to choose a sex position that minimizes spinal movement and relies on hips and knees. More specifically, however, there are two kinds of back pain, and they each require their own approaches.
If you are fexion-intolerant—that is, you might experience pain when you touch your toes or sit for a long period of time—skip spooning. You also want to avoid missionary where your arms are propped on your elbows and doggy where your partner is propped on her hands. Go with missionary where you support yourself with your hands or doggy where your partner gets chest-down, butt up.
If you are extension-intolerant—that is, you get back pain from lying on your back or stomach—your options are reversed. Spooning works well for you, and you want to try missionary where you’re close to your partner and supporting yourself on your elbows or doggy where she’s up on her hands.
Of course, there’s more research to be done. Researchers didn’t cover female back pain, and they only tested out five positions. We’re interested in hearing about reverse cowgirl.
For science, of course.