Claire Grieve is a highly sought-after international yoga specialist, stretch therapist, plant-based health coach, and wellness writer. She underwent extensive yoga training with some of the world’s top yogis and has dedicated almost a decade to teaching and making yoga enjoyable and accessible to everyone. Below, she's sharing the moves that will help enhance your sexual experience, both physically and emotionally.
Some people head to yoga classes for the physical benefits, but yoga offers so much more, both on and off the mat. One of the most overlooked benefits of yoga is its power to enhance your sex life. "Yoga truly focuses physically on the core and emotionally on being present. Both are super important for sexual health," says gynecologist Dr. Alyssa Dweck, who specializes in female sexual health. "Maintaining yoga poses requires mental fortitude and 'being present.' Learning mindfulness through yoga translates to being in the moment during sex."
In fact, one small study published in the Journal of Sexual Medicine found that women who engaged in a 12-week yoga program reported better sexual function in all six stages: desire, arousal, lubrication, orgasm, satisfaction, and pain.
In my experience, there are a few things at play here. Yoga really helps you to get in touch with your breath and body, which may help heighten sensation during sex. Yoga also increases flexibility, which can help you explore new positions—and with that, regular yoga practice will leave you stronger and more toned, which can increase your body confidence (though of course, the most important source of confidence comes from within).
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Keep scrolling as Grieve shares 8 simple yoga poses to boost your sex life.
Make sure to connect to your breath during the practice—this will help you build to experiencing more intense sensations. Hold each pose for at least 60 seconds to try to reap the flexibility, focus, and strength benefits.
Cat Cow Pose
Beginning your practice with a gentle Cat-Cow flow may help loosen both your muscles and energy. Start on all fours and slowly arch your back up, and then let it arch down. This pose is meant to activate the pelvic floor, which is helpful in achieving stronger orgasms.
"Pelvic floor tone can be weakened by age, childbirth, and hormonal changes," says Dweck. "Focusing on pelvic floor tone with yoga poses, in addition to kegel exercises, is vital to preventing and managing vaginal laxity."
"Orgasm may be enhanced through maintaining a rigorous pelvic floor strengthening program," says Dweck.
Downward Dog may help to relieve stress by stretching your muscles and increasing the oxygen flow to your body. This pose will help you find fresh, vibrant energy.
Place your hands shoulder-width apart on the ground, while keeping your legs as straight as you can. Take a deep inhale as you press your hands into the mat and keep your tailbone up.
Lizard pose is one of my favorite hip openers. Hip openers are meant to increase flexibility and also help to release any stagnant emotional energy that you may be holding onto around sex. To do this pose, step your right foot forward and then lower your forearms to the ground. To to keep your back leg straight. If this pose is too challenging, you don't have to lower all the way down to your forearms.
Yoga helps to release built-up stress, which may lead to less inhibition in your sexual experiences.
Straddle pose opens up your inner thighs and groin area. It will also activate your sacral chakra, which is the energy center for sexuality. To do this pose, simply sit with your legs spread apart. Slowly lean forward, with the goal of resting both forearms on the ground. You will find a stretch along your inner thigh, however stop if you feel any sharp pain.
Eagle pose is a balancing act that requires major focus. Bringing this focus into the bedroom will make you more present and aware. To do this pose, start by standing straight up and lift your left leg up. Hook it behind your right calf as you come to a squatting position. Next, bring your arms parallel in front and then hook your right arm under, clasping your palms.
Happy Baby is a deep hip opener that will help with your emotional release and increased flexibility. It opens up your sacral chakra, the key to your passion and pleasure center. "Stress can hinder enjoyable sex both physically and emotionally," says Dweck. "Imagine stress tensing your muscles in the neck or back. The pelvic floor muscles can also tense up during times of stress and can lead to painful sex and in severe cases vaginismus."
To do this pose, lie on your back with your knees bent up. Grasp the outside of your feet, letting your knees fall slightly wider than your torso.
Shoulder Stand Pose
Shoulder Stand helps to release tension from the lower body. It may also send a flow of blood to the brain, where pleasure is experienced.
To do this pose, lie on the floor with your knees bent up. Place your hands straight out on both sides, palms down to the floor. Pushing through your hands extend your legs straight up to the ceiling. Place your hands behind your lower back to support your and to allow you to go further into the stretch.
Plow pose is meant to help keep your spine flexible. This pose may help to prevent injuries from an athletic session between the sheets.
Start by coming into the Shoulder Stand Pose. Slowly move your legs behind your head, with the goal of placing your toes on the floor. Place your hands straight out, with your palms facing down.
To ignite an even deeper connection with your partner, try this yoga practice designed to help you flow your way to a more enhanced sexual experience. I believe that it is important to incorporate these poses into your daily routine, as a regular practice will help expand your access to greater health in all facets of your life.
Dhikav V, Karmarkar G, Gupta R, et al. Yoga in female sexual functions. J Sex Med. 2010;7(2 Pt 2):964-70. doi:10.1111/j.1743-6109.2009.01580.x
Golmakani N, Zare Z, Khadem N, Shareh H, Shakeri MT. The effect of pelvic floor muscle exercises program on sexual self-efficacy in primiparous women after delivery. Iran J Nurs Midwifery Res. 2015;20(3):347-353.
Shohani M, Badfar G, Nasirkandy MP, et al. The effect of yoga on stress, anxiety, and depression in women. Int J Prev Med. 2018;9:21. Published 2018 Feb 21. doi:10.4103/ijpvm.IJPVM_242_16