The Importance of ForeplayPUBLISHED BY:Dr. Yvonne K. Fulbright, PhD
Get frisky for 20 minutes?! This recommendation for foreplay, often given by sexologists and sexuality educators, is typically regarded as a total chore, a burdensome necessity for lovers in getting to the ‘really good stuff.’ Yet, in taking a time out to consider all of the benefits of foreplay, and just how sexy it is, lovers may come to realize that 20 minutes – or more – of getting to full sexual arousal is something you’d rather indulge in than skip.
Foreplay isn’t something you want to forget about, but a critical component of the entire sexual experience. It sets the stage for the entire encounter, largely determining if it’s going to be mediocre or mind-blowing. This is because there are a number of things that happen to your bodies when you and your partner take the time for foreplay.
So the next time you’re tempted to skip the “pre-game show,” consider making it the main event, given that foreplay is a time when…
•Levels of the hormone and brain neurotransmitter oxytocin get elevated even more than during intercourse, resulting in more sexual arousal and bonding.
•Greater total-body, sexual, sensual excitement gets realized, making sex more delightful for him and her, especially once you do go for the gold. Slowing the action and banning that feeling of needing to rush can expand sensations and allow your entire being and body to get involved.
•Better, more intense orgasms are experienced. Postponing gratification often results in a stronger, more pleasurable climax since the body and brain have been fully primed for the ultimate in release.
•Longer-lasting, harder erections occur, enabling a man to feel more confident when he wants to climax. In giving his body time to become aroused, his penis reaches its maximum size and sensitivity levels as it’s engorged with more and more blood.
•Heightened intimacy takes place. Couples don’t come away feeling short-changed when it comes to their emotional, spiritual expression and subsequent connection. While sexual intercourse alone is the primary form of intimacy for many people, foreplay adds to that sense of being one.
•More sharing takes place. In taking their time, couples can more effectively express their desires, longings, hopes, and dreams, along with any reservations and fears, in realizing the interaction and sex they want. In doing so, they feel safer, more comfortable and more secure with one another, which helps in letting go during sex. This results in an even more pleasurable experience.
•Deep relaxation can make things luxurious. Sure, foreplay is about building sexual arousal, with sex often becoming a heart-pounding, cardiovascular activity. But allowing yourselves to be leisurely with foreplay can get your body in a state for hot sex in getting rid of the day’s stress, tensions, and fatigue.
•You fine-tune your technique. When you’re not in a ‘rush, rush, rush’ mentality, you give yourself the time to perfect your technique and better assess what elicits a stronger sexual response. Foreplay is prime time to ask your lover if something feels good or uncomfortable, or if s/he would prefer a different type of touch, or if there’s something they would like to do or try.
•Both of you can have fun. Let’s not forget that foreplay is playtime, a time to get creative, toy with your bodies, incorporate enhancements, test out a role play scenario, share your fantasies, build anticipation, stimulate the senses… basically, have a ball!
•You can fully lose yourselves in the moment. Staying focused on the present, you end up enjoying it, and the overall experience, so much more. So, shake off any pressures you’re putting on yourself, or ask your lover to take a deep breath, and choose to both live in the moment. Take your time giving and receiving pleasure. Sex, including foreplay, isn’t about, and doesn’t need to be about, getting to an erotic end result or goal. It’s about you and your lover having a blast and relishing that shared pleasure.