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How Long Should Foreplay Last?

Extended Foreplay Could Be the Key to Achieving Intense, Full-Body Orgasms

There are certain things in life that should never be rushed, including a good meal and good sex — but especially sex. Although the average duration of intercourse is actually much shorter than most of us think (15 to 17 minutes at best, according to data), the secret to intense orgasms is in foreplay. We spoke with holistic relationship and sex expert Kim Anami, who shared what most men and women get wrong about the pregame.

"I think for most people, foreplay is a very cursory experience; it's very limited and very quick," Kim told POPSUGAR. "There's a graze of the nipples, there might be a little bit of stimulation — if you're lucky — on the labia and the perineum, the inner thighs. But you can spend just 15 minutes stimulating the breasts."

Many couples are so eager to get to the main act that they dismiss all the steamy steps leading up to penetration. But good things come to those who wait. Kim went on to introduce us to the idea of "extended foreplay," which is exactly how it sounds: delayed gratification. Take your time and hold off on intercourse for as long as possible while treating foreplay as a full-body experience. Don't just focus on the most popular areas; show some love to every single part of the body, including the neck and stomach. For just how long, exactly? Kim says, "A minimum of 30 minutes." A whole half-hour dedicated to foreplay isn't realistic for every day, but that extra time will pay off.

"The most satisfying sex is when it's been delayed and extended."

"The most satisfying sex is when it's been delayed and extended, and then your whole body is awake and alive," she said. "And you're much more likely to have full-body orgasms when you do that because you've involved your whole body and not just your genitals."

Foreplay isn't only limited to physical touch, either. Sex is much more passionate when you're connected on a deeper level with your partner. "People also miss the idea of psychological foreplay and emotional foreplay," said Kim. In addition to making an effort to be more in tune with each other, it's also important to make sure that you clear the air of any tension before jumping into the intimate stuff. For example, if you two had a fight earlier that day, resolving things (or at the very least, addressing them) will result in better sex. Similarly, holding onto any lingering resentment can translate to the bedroom and may prevent the both of you from enjoying sex to its fullest potential — or even disrupt your libido for the evening.

So leave all your problems at the door, give your entire body the attention it deserves, and savor every moment.

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