Lower back pain is a common problem and is a hindrance especially when having sex, but not anymore. According to researchers, the test has been conducted for various sexual positions that may help avoid you saying “Not Tonight Honey, I Have A Backache.”

For men who find it painful to put their backs into it during sex, a new Canadian study suggests that some positions are better than others.

Research Insights

Researchers identified certain sex positions as less likely to trigger lower-back pain but choosing the best ones depends on the type of pain the men experience.

The patient with their physical therapist or whoever their primary care provider is will work out which category of back pain they fall into,” said the study’s senior author Stuart McGill, who directs the Spine Biomechanics Laboratory at the University of Waterloo in Ontario.

He and his colleague wrote in the journal Spine that past research has tied the frequency of sexual activity to quality of life and used it as a marker of health and disability. Other studies have also found that up to 84 percent of people with lower-back pain report having sex less frequently.

About one in five men with lower-back pain report discomfort during sex – specifically with pelvic movements and finding comfortable positions, they point out.

Despite the evidence that pain during sex may lead to decreased sexual activity among people with lower-back pain, McGill and his colleague say there had never been a scientific analysis of movements and posture during sex.

“For the first time, we can give guidance to the clinicians when patients come in with all kinds of pain triggers, to give them some evidence-based ranking of different positions,” he told Reuters Health.

Sex position to try

If people can find positions that don’t affect their back-pain triggers, McGill said, they may have a more active sex life.

Doctors typically recommend spooning – where the partners lie on their sides with the man behind the woman – to reduce pain, but McGill said that recommendation and others were mostly based on opinion.

McGill cautioned that positions really need to be tailored to the person and their specific sensitivities.

For example, while spooning has been recommended, it is actually one of the worst positions for men who get pain when they lean forward.

Instead, a position where the woman gets on all fours and the man kneels behind her was suggested as least taxing on the back. Some people refer to the position as “doggy-style,” said McGill. Additionally, the man lying on top of the woman with his arms outstretched and supporting his body was thought to be less likely to cause pain.

The details of the study

For the new study, the researchers recruited 10 healthy male-female couples in their mid-20s and mid-30s to be analyzed by a computer while they attempted five different sex positions provided by the researchers.

The researchers were then able to compare the men’s spine movement during sex to movements known to trigger lower-back pain. Based on those comparisons, they found some positions that may be less likely to cause pain.

For example, while spooning has been recommended, it is actually one of the worst positions for men who get pain when they lean forward.

“Even within a category, we would perform slight modifications with each of these styles with the patient,” he said. “You’ve got to tune the technique for the individual and sometimes that tuning is quite subtle.”

More studies are planned for women with lower-back pain and people who had hip surgery, McGill added.

Source: Reuters