Young couple in love lying embracing in bed

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BRIGHTON, United Kingdom — Do you need to be good at math to have great sex? Not exactly, but a new study explains how the right formula could help lead to greater satisfaction. Mathematicians at the University of Sussex have created the first ever formula for reaching sexual climax. The team started with men for one simple reason — they say it’s easier for guys to achieve orgasm.

Taking inspiration from math equations which try to improve the performance of athletes, researchers combined data from years of studies looking at physiological (physical) and psychological (mental) arousal. These studies featured over 10,000 sexual acts involving hundreds of men and women in lab settings.

Here’s why things go wrong in bed for men

The team notes that they tracked the four stages of the male sexual cycle: excitation, plateau, orgasm, and resolution. For men at least, the researchers found a very simple problem which can lead to a bad sexual experience — thinking too much too early. Results show too much psychological stimulation too early in the cycle makes it more likely that a man fails to climax.

Based on that finding, the team actually created two mathematical equations, one covering the physical aspects of climaxing and one focusing on the mental aspects of great sex.

“In the past, researchers have tried to write a model to describe the physiological path to climax, but without success. Drawing on established data, as well as our own previously published work on modelling biological phenomena such as epidemiology and immunity, we have developed the first successful mathematical model of sexual performance. Our results cover the physiological and psychological aspects required to reach climax. They reinforce, and mathematically prove, existing studies into the psychology of sex,” says Dr. Konstantin Blyuss, a study co-leader and reader in mathematics in the University of Sussex School of Mathematical and Physical Sciences, in a media release.

“A key finding is that too much psychological arousal early in the process can inhibit the chance of reaching climax. Simply put, our findings can be summarized as ‘don’t overthink it’.”

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Where’s the formula for women?

Compared to women, study authors say men have a much simpler arousal cycle, making the male orgasm a great “starting point” for this work. The team is now going back to the drawing board to create a similar math equation that’ll leave women just as happy as their male partners.

“Our findings shed light on a socially taboo subject, which we believe could have useful applications for the clinical treatment of sexual dysfunction, as well as for providing the general public with a tested formula for improving their sex life,” says study co-leader Dr. Yuliya Kyrychko, a reader in mathematics in the University of Sussex School of Mathematical and Physical Sciences.

“With what we have learned from this study, we intend to mathematically model the female sexual response, which is physiologically – and mathematically – more complex than the male response.”

The findings are published in the journal Chaos.

About Chris Melore

Chris Melore has been a writer, researcher, editor, and producer in the New York-area since 2006. He won a local Emmy award for his work in sports television in 2011.

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3 Comments

  1. Emory Kendrick says:

    I was not aware the guys had a problem. But…good to have solution for something that doesn’t exist.

  2. marybost says:

    As usual, women’s needs marginalized. I’d like to see the source that says women’s cycle is simpler than men’s. At WHAT age? I know men have issues, but women go through hormonal upheaval. No offense to the author – he’s just citing a source.

    1. Nick says:

      The sentence you’re referencing says the exact opposite of what you posted.
      “Compared to women, study authors say men have a much simpler arousal cycle…”

      You have now been un-marginalized.