Friday, December 8, 2006

Missionary Position


The missionary position is a common human sex position. In his seminal study Sexual Behavior in the Human Female (1953), researcher Alfred Kinsey stated that 100 percent of married women surveyed reported using this position most often, whereas nine percent reported using it exclusively. There is a common belief that the term "missionary position" arose in response to teachings by Christian missionaries that this sex position was the only "proper" way to engage in sexual intercourse. This is in fact a myth. The reality is that the term probably originated some time between 1945 and 1965 through a confluence of (apparently honest) misunderstandings and misinterpretations of historical documents.

In the missionary position

* The woman lies on her back, with her legs spread either flat (horizontally on the same surface as her back), drawn up toward her chest, or wrapped around the man. She can wrap one or both legs around him at various heights: resting on the back of his upper shins or thighs, around his buttocks or back, or over his shoulders. Generally, the higher she lifts her legs, the deeper the penetration.
* The man lies on his stomach on top of the woman, his legs between her legs, and his groin at the same level as hers to facilitate penetration.

Advantages of the missionary position

* Both partners can see each other and make eye contact, thereby receiving feedback from their facial expressions and vocalizations.
* Coitus can be combined with erotic kissing on the mouth, including such variants as the "French kiss."
* Penetration is relatively deep.
* The man's groin can directly or indirectly stimulate the clitoris, depending on how the act is performed.
* A relatively quick male orgasm can be achieved if so desired; conversely, the greater control afforded the man enables him to delay his orgasm and thereby prolong the copulatory act.
* The woman may enjoy the sensation of submission to the male and the freedom to caress him as she chooses. In addition, she is able to either hasten or delay both her orgasm and that of her partner through voluntary, rhythmic flexation and relaxation of the pubococcygeus muscles surrounding her vagina.
* Very little suppleness or flexibility is required of either partner. Both are able to remain relatively relaxed and avoid fatigue.
* The intimacy of full-body contact affords a heightened sensual and emotional experience for both the male and female.
* The man can reach under and masturbate his partner using his


Disadvantages of the missionary position
* Either the man's weight is placed upon the woman (which may be uncomfortable for her) or he must support his weight upon his arms and knees (which may become tiring for him).
* It can be difficult for partners to manually stimulate the clitoris.
* There is an absence of visual stimulation, as it is difficult to see each other's bodies.
* This position sometimes produces a quick male orgasm (premature ejaculation).
* Some women do not enjoy the possibly submissive sensation of being under their partner.