Winter is here and it’s a chilly one – so why not get hot under the covers. Sex is a great way to warm our bodies, our minds and our relationships. It does not matter if we are single, a couple or a thrupple – warming up can be the main event.. We can never have too much foreplay! Foreplay is fun. Foreplay warms our hearts, our minds, our skin, and even our muscles.
What is Foreplay?
When asking people about foreplay, I often hear them explain various forms of genital-play. I explain foreplay as sex-play which does not involve the genitals or key erogenous zones: clitoris and vulva, penis and testicles, perineums; anuses; or nipples.
Foreplay is the erotic, the sensual touch of skin. The challenge I offer individuals and relationships is: If you cannot excite yourself (for solo play) or partner/s, without touching the genitals then what are you doing. People are often taken aback. This challenges the sexual scripts many of us developed through our early lives. Let’s consider the importance of foreplay to healthy and fun sex play.
Gettin’ it on with Foreplay
Foreplay is about creating connection. It is about warming-up the body; getting ourselves ready. When we exercise, we do stretches and aerobic activity before the workout. Before performing, singers will run scales or do mouth exercises. With sex play it’s the same thing. If we begin warmed-up, even hot, then possibly it will result in getting hotter, or more aroused. Fun all-round really.
Start Foreplay Early
Foreplay doesn’t begin 15 minutes even 30 minutes before sex play. Think about foreplay as beginning earlier in the day, or even days. Sex requires us to be engaged; to be present. Our minds have to be on the same page as our partner/’s’. Often times, one partner is ready for sex and the other hasn’t even considered it. Getting yourselves in the same frame of mind will only increase the enjoyment for all, as well as improve the relationships health.
Send a sexy message to your partner. It can be about how aroused you are by them. It can be detailed about what foreplay activities you want to share with them – but remember many people have restrictions at work so be sure to consider their schedule and commitments! I know if I am in a middle of management meeting a text suggesting sex play would not be welcomed.
Communication is the key to good sex. Simple! Talk to your partner/s about they like when it comes to touch. Firm? Soft? Ticklish? How does your partner like to be touched. Listening to understand is the key. And when we actively listen we build trust and connection. You can read more about active listening and its effects on your relationship here.
Creating Connection – Heart Holding
Creating connection extends the trust building started with communication. Heart holding is a simple activity which only needs to take a few minutes. It works in couples, thrupples and in solo play (although done a little differently).
Sitting or standing with your partner, place your right hand on each other’s hearts. (The heart is located in the centre of the chest. Think: CPR position.) Hold hands with your other hand. Gaze into each other’s eyes and try to synchronise your breathing. Spend two- or three-minutes engaging. When you are ready ask your partner if they are ready too before moving to touch activities.
Heart holding builds connection and helps centre the partners in-the-moment. It brings focus – an erotic focus.
(If you are engaging in solo play, simply lay comfortably and place your right hand on your heart and rest your left hand over your genitals, or even your abdomen. Spend a few minutes focusing on the warmth of the touch before moving off to erotic self-touch.)
Breathe deeply. Draw the breathe in through your nose and slowly exhale through your nose or mouth. If you are the receptive partner, close your eyes and focus on your breathe and the touch you experience. If you are the giving partner try to match your partner’s breathing. Breath can help bring connection and is mindful – keeping you centred in the moment. Deep breathing helps with better blood flow. Better blood flow equals more arousal of the skin and the body overall.
Spice Up the Touch – Explore ‘n’ Tease
Whenever we begin touching, always start with broad strokes to encourage blood flow flow to the skin. This skin is afterall, our largest organ. To continue focus your touch on specific areas of the body. Maybe the arms; the neck; the abdomen, even the hands or feet. Change the pressure of the touch from light to firm. Use the tips of your fingers; your nails and the back of your hand for different sensations.
Anticipation is the key here: where are you going to touch; how will you touch. Tease your partner (or yourself). With consent blind fold your partner to help heighten the sensation of anticipation and touch.
Use your touch to explore the body. Find a spot that is sensual for your partner. The inner thighs; the inner arms. The neck. The face.
You can use massage oil, like the Intimate Earth Energising Massage Oil, or even a light oil like bran or coconut oil. You can even use talcum powder to help the hands move over the skin. (Don’t use both. It gets messy quickly.) You even can try a scented candle to set the mood, and use the wax for the massage. The Lelo Scented Massage Candle is made from shear butter, natural soy wax and apricot kernel oil. It burns at a low temperature allowing you to sue the melted wax for your massage.
Get warm this winter and spice up your sex play with foreplay.
Remember a healthy life includes a healthy sex life. And a healthy sex life is sane, (con)sensual and safe.
Dr Christopher Fox is a Psychosexual and Relationship Therapist at Sex Life Therapy in Melbourne. He has clinics in Collingwood, Frankston and online. He regularly appears in the media and runs workshops for the general public and professionals. Dr Christopher is also Senior Lecturer in Sexual Health (Sexology) at the Faculty of Medicine and Health, University of Sydney where he coordinates the Psychosexual Therapy training program..
Disclaimer: The information contained in this document should be read as general in nature and is only to provide an overview of the subject matter covered. Please read product packaging carefully and follow all instructions.