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Perfect Positioning: How to Enhance the Missionary Pose

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Photo: A variation on the missionary position, coital alignment technique (CAT), Source: Freepik
Photo: A variation on the missionary position, coital alignment technique (CAT), Source: Freepik

Among the plethora of sexual positions, the missionary stands out as the most straightforward, monotonous, and conventional. However, it is this often-maligned missionary position—specifically, one scientific variation of it—that can address the inequitable phenomenon of the orgasm gap among women.

This discussion centres around a comprehensive study of the sexual lives of 52,600 Americans, conducted by researchers from Indiana, Chapman, and Claremont universities. The aim was to determine which sexual orientation groups experience orgasm most frequently and which do so the least. As is often the case with large-scale studies, the researchers meticulously gathered data only to confirm what was already widely acknowledged: heterosexual men and women occupy opposite ends of the orgasm spectrum. Only 65% of heterosexual women reported experiencing orgasm regularly, the lowest percentage among all groups studied. Conversely, heterosexual men had the highest rate at 95%. This 30% disparity is referred to in scientific literature as the "orgasm gap."

The researchers concluded that heterosexual women could orgasm much more frequently if their partners were more diligent in manually stimulating the clitoris. However, any woman who has ever tried to get a man to fix a broken socket or tap at home knows how challenging it can be to get them to use their hands. But all is not lost, as there is a tried and tested method that requires no hands at all—the coital alignment technique (CAT). Developed by American psychotherapist Edward Eichel in 1988, CAT was initially forgotten after a few years of attention. Interest in CAT has been rekindled recently, as new, small but practical studies have emerged, some of which indicate that this technique can increase the percentage of female orgasms in the missionary position without using hands to 70%—a figure worth noting.

It is unclear why CAT did not gain popularity initially, but it was likely due to the ambiguity of the technical instructions. Couples who attempted this sexual innovation in the late '80s likely did not achieve the desired results immediately and thus dismissed CAT as ineffective. Indeed, Eichel himself emphasised that due to the vast variability in human body sizes and proportions, it is essential not only to follow the developed technical guidelines precisely but also to pay attention to personal sensations. Only then will the desired sexual miracle occur, known in the CAT community as the "perfect position."

The key is to increase clitoral pressure. In the standard missionary position, this pressure is almost non-existent. Therefore, two main adjustments are necessary. First, the man should position himself slightly higher; for example, if the partners are of similar height, it would be sufficient for the man's chest to be approximately level with the woman's shoulders. If the woman is significantly shorter than her partner, she might even need to press her face into his chest (the end result is worth it!). The second essential adjustment is to change the pattern of the sexual movement: instead of the traditional back-and-forth motion, it should be an up-and-down movement.

A writer fond of metaphors might describe the man's actions as not "thrusting with a spear" but "sawing with a saw." A more daring poet might compare it to the process of grinding corn, where the clitoris is the grain, and the man's and woman's pelvises are the millstones grinding it into "cornmeal." In essence, the close and coordinated work of the pelvic bones is where the magic of CAT lies. The process, which resembles gentle rocking, is divided into two main phases: during the first—upward—the man leads (while the woman slightly resists); during the second—downward—the woman leads (now the man resists). For a personal adaptation of CAT, each couple must experiment with the position of the woman's legs and the advisability of using a pillow under her pelvis, which usually creates a positive effect.

The coital alignment technique can eliminate the main drawback of the missionary position—the difficulty of achieving orgasm for the woman—while preserving all its traditional advantages, namely: intimate and emotional visual contact; free hands for additional caresses for both partners; no need for acrobatic skills; minimal fatigue for both the woman and the man, making it an ideal option when one wants to relax in the evening after a hard day's work. Even if nothing comes of it, CAT is a great excuse to have a bit of fun. Give it a try!



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