When athletes are getting ready for the big game or sporting event, you better believe it involves a lot of intense training. But what happens when things get physical (and we don't just mean on the treadmill)? A new study conducted by Adam & Eve, a sex toy company, in collaboration with expert and coach Dr. Mike Young, found that athletes who regularly participated in sexual activity had improved performance come testing.
According to a press release, the study followed 21 male and female athletes over the course of three weeks, monitoring their sexual activity and their performance in speed, strength, and agility exercises. By tracking both masturbation and sex, and comparing them to athletic performance, researchers found some surprising results.
Physically, the study suggests that it all comes down to the chemicals released during orgasm, many of which mimic the feelings and side effects certain athletes have tried to achieve using illegal substances. For instance, norepinephrine, a chemical that increases alertness, arousal, and blood flow, is comparable to epinephrine, or adrenaline. Oxytocin is a natural alternative to the steroid hormone prasterone. Getting laid is basically a performance-enhancing drug.
The psychological results are even more interesting. "When it comes to sexual activity and athletic performance, it really is a case where an individual's perception is the same as their reality," Dr. Young explains in the release. "If they feel like participating in a sexual activity will improve their athletic performance, then it more than likely will."
The opposite is also true, which gives athletes a unique amount of power. Those who believe there is a positive relationship between sexual activity and athletic performance can simply seek out those opportunities as an effective way to prepare for their events, and those who don't need only abstain. Indeed, some consider it bad luck.
Whichever method athletes choose, it's safe to say with this newfound knowledge, this year's Olympics might be very, very interesting.
This article originally appeared on Cosmopolitan.com. Minor edits have been made by the Cosmo.ph editors.