What Is Tantric Sex?
For many of us, we have sex with one particular goal in mind: orgasm. You can’t blame us, orgasms are great. However, oftentimes our quest to climax can cause us to lose focus from our partner and ourselves. Centering sex around an orgasm can even be anxiety-inducing if we are orgasming too fast or not getting there at all.
Let us introduce you to a concept you’ve probably already heard of– tantric sex. A practice that is not centered around orgasms but can cause mind-blowing transcendental orgasms when they are achieved. Tantra also is known to take the pressure off performance, allowing participants to relax and more effectively build arousal.
But plot twist, Tantra isn’t just about sex. It is an ancient 5,000-year-old Hindu practice that focuses on becoming in tune with yourself, your body, and your partner. Tantra extends not just to our sexual life, but to our entire life. Through various rituals like tantra breath and tantra meditation, this spiritual practice can take you and your partner (or even just you) to a whole new sexual level.
So… where do we sign up?
How to Prepare for Tantric Sex
Tantra begins in the mind, so preparing yourself mentally can actually help better prepare your body to have a tantric experience.
Sally Kempton, author of Awakening Shakti: The Transformative Power of the Goddesses of Yoga, describes “in-breath and out-breath” as a mirror to our “divine creative gesture.” According to Kempton, inhaling draws us into ourselves, while exhaling draws us outward to the world or our partner.” In other words, oxygen may just put the “O” in orgasm. Try the following breathing exercises alone or with your partner:
Bhastrika (Bellows Breath)
Breath in and out vigorously 27 times. As you exhale, focus on the sensation of your pelvic floor lifting. This will bring energy and attention to the pelvic region and help access the magical conglomerate of sexual energy known as kundalini held at the base of the spine. After your 27 rounds of Bhastrika, inhale fully and hold while clenching your lower abdominal muscles.
You may want to opt for a chair in this one. Sit with your spine straight and your feet on the floor. Relax your shoulders and place your hands over your belly button. Inhale deeply and feel your belly slowly inflate. Then try to keep your chest relaxed as you exhale forcefully, feeling your belly contract towards your spine. Repeat 21 times.
When feeling stuck in your head, move your body! Movement, even less constructed movement like dancing freely, opens up your body and releases tension. Seriously, if you are not about the yoga life, dance around your room for a few minutes and skip this section. But if yoga seems cool to you, try this simple tantric yoga move to increase sensitivity and open your body to all the sensations it is about to feel:
Sun Salutation or Surya Namaskar
Step 1: Stand tall in mountain pose with your arms straight above you and your palms touching.
Step 2: Slowly bring your palms down to your heart.
Step 3: Take 5 deep breaths
Step 4: Extend your arms back overhead into mountain pose, keeping your gaze forward
Step 5: Release into a forward fold
Step 6: Bring hands to your shins or thighs while focusing on lengthening your spine
Repeat three times.
How to Have Tantric Sex
Keep in mind: there is no right or wrong way to have tantric sex. There is no rule book, and there is no singular way to achieve a spiritual connection to yourself or to your partner. But we will do our best to provide some guidelines. You can practice every item on this list, or you can incorporate just the things that appeal to you.
Set a Vibe
Tantric sex is a ritual. You and your partner are about to go on a sexual journey, and it is essential to create a vibe that is distinct from your everyday life. So light some candles, fill your space with pillows and soft lighting, and put on a playlist that puts you in the mood. Use one of your own or use the one below.
Tantric massage can help relax away your partner’s physical boundaries. Massage can be the first, middle, or final step in your tantric experience, or it can even be the entire experience. Have the receiver lie down with their hands at their side. Focus on massaging their hands and fingers. Work your way up their arms to their shoulders, back, ending at their hips. From there, if both you and your partner are comfortable and relaxed, you can begin massaging their genitals. The Sanskrit term for this type of genital massage is called either a yoni (for a female) or lingam (for a male) massage.
Yab Yum is a tantric sex position that easily facilitates synchronized breathing, eye contact, and spiritual connection. Devika Singh, a wholistic sex educator and tantra coach, describes the Yab Yum position as “a full embrace.” Here’s what it looks like:
While partner one sits cross-legged, partner two sits on partner one’s upper thighs. If this position doesn’t feel comfortable to you, you can try doing it sideways or any other position that allows you to face your partner.
A key element in tantric sex is keeping your eyes open to observe what is transpiring between you and your partner. Gazing into the eyes of your partner can be a highly intense experience. Try getting into the Yab Yum position and looking deeply into your partner’s eyes. Savor the intimacy, discomfort, and connection you are forging. Try to do this for 10-15 minutes.
After you have become comfortable with the sensation of sustained eye gazing, try incorporating synchronized breathing. You can use either of the breathing techniques you tried in your preparation for tantric sex, or you can simply try to match each other’s breathing patterns. To do this, try breathing in while your partner breathes out then switch. While breathing, feel free to kiss, caress, and allow the sexual experience to come to fruition on its own.
It is amazing how sometimes all we need to improve our sexual performance is to stop worrying about our sexual performance. When we see other humans as objects of potential sexual pleasure and sexual experiences simply as ways to achieve orgasm, we are missing out on the opportunity to experience true sexual ecstasy. Practicing tantric sex can undoubtedly bring you multitudes of longer, earth-shattering orgasms (sometimes literally even in multitudes), but more importantly, it can allow you to feel fully alive in your own body.