For some (annoying) reason, the missionary position is often disregarded as the easiest and therefore, the most boring sex position of them all. First off, it's as boring as you make it. And second, it's a classic for a reason, okay?!
For anyone who doesn't know, missionary sex is where the giver—a man, male-bodied person, or penetrating partner (someone wearing a strap-on dildo)—is on top. The receiver—a woman or female-bodied person—lies on their back. The partners face each other, and that's missionary!
Below, sex and relationship expert Annabelle Knight explains the different ways to add a bit of variety to the position.
Go for maximum skin contact.
"One of the beauties of sex in the missionary position is that it allows for lots of skin contact," Annabelle says. "So go for maximum skin contact."
What to do: Rub your hands up and down your partner's back or along their sides. Pull them close, and feel your chests pressed together.
"The missionary position doesn't mean you have to lie still as your partner moves," she says.
What to do: Try bending your knees, planting your feet on the mattress (or ground) and moving your hips. You can rock your hips back and forth, or move them in circles.
Remember, most (around 70 to 80 percent) of people with vaginas can't climax purely through intercourse. So what's the natural response? "To stimulate your clitoris during penetration, which will increase your chances of orgasm," Annabelle says.
What to do: Good news, the missionary position is particularly well suited to this. Simply reach down and stroke yourself while your partner penetrates you.
Experiment with toys.
Sex toys are so much fun, and also make partnered sex more exciting and varied. You'd be a fool not to try them at least once. Annabelle suggests introducing "a small bullet vibrator into your lovemaking."
What to do: Either of you can use it to stimulate your clitoris before and during penetration.
Put a ring on it.
It's also worth experimenting with one of the most popular couples' sex toys—a vibrating love ring, aka cock ring. This is worn around the penis during sex. It restricts blood flow, giving the person harder and longer erections. It contains a small bullet vibrator on top to maximize your pleasure, by vibrating against your clitoris while your partner grinds.
What to do: Use a lot of lube so you're both comfortable, and slip the cock ring down to the base of your partner's penis. Switch the vibrator on, and enjoy the extra stimulation.
Make eye contact.
"This has to be the most important plus for missionary sex when it comes to intimacy," Annabelle says. So, if you're not creeped out by intense eye contact, "look deeply into your partner's eyes."
What to do: One fun way to add real intimacy is to try to hold eye contact during orgasm—preferably during a shared orgasm, when you are both climaxing together.
Kink it up.
Without the ability to move your arms, or see what is happening, every tiny touch will feel more intense, Annabelle explains.
What to do: Introduce some handcuffs and/or a blindfold, just to add an element of surprise to proceedings and vary your routine.
Obvs we all know by now that communication is the one true key to great sex. But missionary position is the perfect one for speaking softly to each other.
What to do: Tell them how much pleasure you are feeling, instruct them what to do next—whatever turns you on.
This article originally appeared on Cosmopolitan.com/uk. Minor edits have been made by the Cosmo.ph editors.