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Standing Sex Positions That Will Take Your Sex Life To New Heights

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    Photographed by Natalia Mantini.

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    One evening at a particularly raunchy dance party in Brooklyn, my partner and I realized that we just couldn’t wait to make it back to either of our bedrooms. In a horny frenzy, we scanned our surroundings for a private area outdoors, and wandered into a parking lot full of trucks. After we hastily scrambled between a concrete wall and the front of an 18-wheeler and pulled our pants down just enough, I flopped forwards onto the hood of the truck, grabbing the side mirrors to brace myself. What ensued was some of the hottest, naughtiest-feeling sex of my life — it was so sudden and out of the ordinary, it felt like a scene out of a movie.

    I’m usually a total bottom and generally stick to a finite set of dependably-orgasmic (and horizontal) sex positions. But during vertical sex, I’m much more active, and usually have to engage my muscles (especially my pelvic floor) in ways that in-bed sex doesn’t usually require. And personally, getting all that blood pumping can make it easier for me to orgasm. Afterwards, I find myself adorably sweaty, flushed, blissed out, and often ready to pass out. But while upright sex can seem daunting, or more trouble than it’s worth, it can actually create more possibilities for intimacy.

    “Being able to have sex standing up not only adds variety [to] one’s sex life, but also provides options for spontaneity, especially in tight spaces,” Madeleine Castellanos, MD, functional medicine physician and sex therapist, tells me (and considering how much I loved my truck-yard experience, I couldn’t agree more).

    “Adding surprise to our sexual repertoire also re-stimulates dopamine receptors in the brain,” says sex coach Patti Britton, MD. “These are one of the many neurotransmitters responsible for lust.”

    Obviously, I had to find out more ways I could work standing sex into my repertoire. But as I researched sex positions, I had trouble finding a guide that was inclusive of gender and had variations accommodating a wide range of physical abilities — standing sex can be quite the workout. Most traditional guides describe sexual roles for the “man” and the “woman,” but I knew that all of these positions could be enjoyed regardless of genitals.

    So I enlisted a few sexperts (like Dr. Castellanos and Dr. Britton) to help me round up the best standing sex positions. In this guide, I’ve indicated the “giver” as the more active partner, the one doing the penetrating — but of course, the penetrative positions for the “giver” can be performed with a penis or a strap-on. (Strap-ons are actually advantageous, since you can rotate the dildo to find the most comfortable position for each partner.) Conversely, the “receiver” is the more passive partner, the one being penetrated either vaginally or anally (although you will need to be more delicate in these positions if you are using them for anal).

    Ahead, my favorite standing sex positions. Trust me when I say these will bring your sex life to new heights.

    The gap between what we learned in sex ed and what we're learning through sexual experience is big — way too big. So we're helping to connect those dots by talking about the realities of sex, from how it's done to how to make sure it's consensual, safe, healthy, and pleasurable all at once. Check out more
    here.


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  2. Illustrated by: Paola Delucca

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    Mopping

    Yogis, rejoice! In this sturdy pose, the receiver bends over and “tents” their body, much like a downward dog, while the giver stands behind. This configuration allows for vigorous sex without risking the two of you falling over (it happens!).

    The receiver also has the ability to control the pace and depth of penetration by bending or straightening their knees. While this pose won’t deliver direct G-spot/prostate stimulation, it is great for those who crave deep, intense penetration. As a person who tires quickly, I find that this pose is great towards the end of having standing sex when I find myself running out of steam. Taking the pressure off of my legs and core and putting a bit of work into my arms allows me to keep going for even longer.

  3. Illustrated by: Paola Delucca

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    90-Degree Angle

    This position allows for momentum and gravity to ramp up the intensity of penetration. The giver stands behind the receiver, much like in the mopping position. But instead of the receiver bending over and using the floor to brace themselves, the giver holds the receiver’s hands behind their back to keep them upright at a 90-degree angle. Not only does this position allow for deep penetration, but it also lets the receiver relax while their weight acts as a counterbalance.

  4. Illustrated by: Paola Delucca

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    The Sexy Prune

    If you’re a size queen or king, you’ll love how this position creates a sensation of tightness and fullness, regardless of a penis or dildo’s size. The receiver lays on their back on a surface that is waist-level for the standing giver. The receiver raises their legs to make a 90-degree angle and has the option to cross their legs to create greater friction. As the giver penetrates, the pelvic muscles of the receiver create compression. Internally rotating the legs will create more pressure in the vaginal canal, while externally rotating the legs creates more pressure in the anal canal.

  5. Illustrated by: Paola Delucca

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    Fire Hydrant

    In this position, the receiver stands as the giver kneels or sits below them and performs oral sex.

    “Standing helps a person feel sexy and powerful,” says Dr. Castellanos, adding that “letting your partner kiss and caress your whole body up and down” as you stand can make the experience even sexier.

    It’s so true — if I’m giving a blowjob in this position, I love having both of my hands free to wrap around my partner’s thighs or reach up and grab at his chest. Even though we aren’t face-to-face, this can be an incredibly sensual pose.

    As the receiver of this position, I also love the beautiful aerial view of my partner’s face buried in my crotch. Pro tip: The receiver can lean against a wall if standing for long periods of time causes discomfort.

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    Candle

    Ah, one of my favorite poses for tight spaces — the Candle is essentially spooning, or getting fucked from behind, while standing. In this position, the receiver can tighten or loosen how tightly they’re keeping their thighs together in order to control the sensation.

    Additionally, the receiver can lean into a wall for added support — I personally find it incredibly arousing to be confined and smooshed up against a wall, especially in a small shower.

    During my research, I found that this pose seemed to be among the most popular. Dr. Britton says that this could be because it “allows you to have your hands free to kiss and caress your partner’s back and neck.” It’s also a relatively simple position, and allows both partners to be completely upright — not just the giver.

    “It’s more of a cardiovascular workout, and you can have more control over how your body moves with your partner, leading to more pleasure and sensation,” notes Shannon Chavez, MD, a licensed psychologist and sex therapist based in L.A.