In a 2006 Men’s Health story, we wrote about a porn star who climaxed every time she did hanging leg raises. Soon after, emails poured in from other women who had also gotten off while working out.We dubbed the phenomenon “the coregasm,” since it seemed like core exercises were often the moves that triggered the orgasm.
Soon after, Men’s Health Sex Professor Debby Herbenick, Ph.D., started doing some detective work. Through her research, she found that 10 percent of women and men have experienced an orgasm from exercising.The guys in her studies reported getting off and having an orgasm while doing situps and pullups, lifting weights, climbing ropes, and running.The crazy thing is coregasms don’t have to involve any thoughts about sexor friction on your genitals. They often seem to result solely from working your abdominal muscles, says Herbenick, author of the new book The Coregasm Workout: The Revolutionary Method for Better Sex through Exercise.
Scientists haven’t yet figured out how that’s possible. Some theories involve stimulation of internal body parts, like nerve pathways, that are associated with orgasm, Herbenick says.
Most guys who have experienced the phenomenon describe the climaxes as more intense than the ones they have when masturbating, but less awesome than when they’re with a partner. Oddly enough, many men have coregasms without ever having an erection.
This isn’t something we’d necessarily recommend trying to achieve—at least not in a public gym. Exercise-induced orgasms often involve ejaculation, says Herbenick, and that could obviously get messy.
But if you do feel a coregasm coming on, you can prevent it by stopping whatever exercise you’re doing, she says.