Sex can be a lot of fun, but it can lose its appeal when you have a bad back and certain positions do nothing but exasperate your problem. Luckily, there are a number of sex positions to try if you have a bad back that will keep you comfortable while doing the deed.
Oddly enough, a number of these positions are research-based. In 2014, The Washington Post reported on research done at the University of Waterloo in Canada that looked into back-friendly sex positions. After a lifetime of believing that spooning was the only position, lead author of the study Natalie Sidorkewicz decided to seek the real answer.
"Spooning had previously been considered a one-position-fits-all for both men and women with back pain," she told The Washington Post. "That ignores the fact that there are different kinds of back pain triggered by different kinds of movements."
For those with back pain, the main thing to understand is that there are actually two types. Those who are "flexion-intolerant," who experience pain when they touch their toes or sit for a long time, and those who are "extension-intolerant," who might experience pain by lying on their back or stomach. But no matter which type of pain you or your partner may suffer from, here are seven sex positions that work for those with a bad back.
1. Doggy Style With You On Your Elbows
According to Everyday Health, the sex position known as rear-entry quadruped or mQUAD1 — i.e. doggy style — is likely much more comfortable for men who are flexion-intolerant.
2. Doggy Style With You On Your Hands
Although mQUAD2, the variation of doggy style in which the woman is supporting her upper body with her hands, is equally as comfortable for flexion-intolerant men, this sex position is even better for women with a bad back, according to Prevention.
3. Missionary Style With Him On His Hands
According to the aforementioned Everyday Health article, missionary in which the man supports his upper body with his hands and the woman's hips and knees are slightly flexed is considered a "spine-sparing" approach for flexion-intolerant men.
4. Missionary Style With Him On His Elbows
The other variation of missionary style, in which the male is supporting his elbows and the woman is more flexed, is not ideal if your partner is flexion-intolerant, according to the aforementioned Everyday Health article. However, for extension-intolerant men, this is actually a comfortable position that should be favored.
5. Missionary Style With A Pillow Under You
According to the aforementioned Prevention article, missionary with a pillow under your back is a naturally comfortable position for women with a bad back. This is because your spine is in a neutral position, which eases any pain and discomfort.
6. Spooning With Both Of Your Knees Flexed
The mSIDE position, also known as spooning, has long been assumed to be the best position for couples in which one or both have a bad back. However, according to the aforementioned The Washington Post article, researchers found that this position actually isn't easy on the spine and is not recommended for the flexion-intolerant. But if your partner is extension-intolerant, then this position is a comfortable one for him.
7. You On Top Using Your Hips And Knees
According to the aforementioned Prevention article, a good thing to keep in mind if you're the one suffering with a bad back is that you want to be able to control the motion. This is true for men too, but a position of you on top with you controlling the activity using your knees and hips (instead of your spine) is ideal.