Good sexual intercourse lasts minutes, not hours


Satisfactory sexual intercourse for couples lasts from 3 to 13 minutes, contrary to popular fantasy about the need for hours of sexual activity, according to a survey of U.S. and Canadian sex therapists.

Penn State Erie researchers Eric Corty and Jenay Guardiani conducted a survey of 50 full members of the Society for Sex Therapy and Research, which include psychologists, physicians, social workers, marriage/family therapists and nurses who have collectively seen thousands of patients over several decades.

Thirty-four, or 68 percent, of the group responded and rated a range of time amounts for sexual intercourse, from penetration of the vagina by the penis until ejaculation, that they considered adequate, desirable, too short and too long.

The average therapists’ responses defined the ranges of intercourse activity times: “adequate,” from 3-7 minutes; “desirable,” from 7-13 minutes; “too short” from 1-2 minutes; and “too long” from 10-30 minutes.

“A man’s or woman’s interpretation of his or her sexual functioning as well as the partner’s relies on personal beliefs developed in part from society’s messages, formal and informal,” the researchers said. “”Unfortunately, today’s popular culture has reinforced stereotypes about sexual activity. Many men and women seem to believe the fantasy model of large penises, rock-hard erections and all-night-long intercourse. ”

Past research has found that a large percentage of men and women, who responded, wanted sex to last 30 minutes or longer.

“This seems a situation ripe for disappointment and dissatisfaction,” said lead author Eric Corty, associate professor of psychology. “With this survey, we hope to dispel such fantasies and encourage men and women with realistic data about acceptable sexual intercourse, thus preventing sexual disappointments and dysfunctions.”

Corty and Guardiani, then-undergraduate student and now a University graduate, are publishing their findings in the May issue of the Journal of Sexual Medicine, but the article is currently available online.

The survey’s research also has implications for treatment of people with existing sexual problems.

“If a patient is concerned about how long intercourse should last, these data can help shift the patient away from a concern about physical disorders and to be initially treated with counseling, instead of medicine,” Corty noted.


65 Responses to Good sexual intercourse lasts minutes, not hours

  1. saka elkhodir May 21, 2012 at 1:41 am #

    I will like to know y I don’t sex drive any more with my wife but when I go to other woman I get this sexual drive
    I don’t get erected enough when I am with my wife I want to do it but I can not because of my erection
    Y it always happen like that with her not else where

  2. SexToyEnthusiast April 15, 2012 at 12:11 pm #

    3 to 13 minutes for optimal sex is more than I usually Get….hmm…

  3. Hyacinth March 10, 2012 at 7:20 am #

    same here. UI hate it most is is just fucking 1min. I disvirgin the girl and her viagina tastes like what i never felt before. I am new in sex game though.

  4. Dave February 21, 2012 at 10:17 pm #

    first things first, masturbate once before sex, get the first impatient nut out of the way. secondly, if you can’t control it on your own, then use distractions, and don’t think / pay attention to whats going on, instead think about something else, sing a song in your head, look around the room and think about the stuff there, some people like to think about things that may be a turn off. third, when you feel yourself getting close but you don’t want to finish yet, then by all means slow down, even take a break and use other appendages to pleasure with.

  5. Opawhale December 12, 2011 at 1:00 pm #

    By private lessons you mean?
    If you mean what I think you do I would love them ;)

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