Edging is a new name for an old concept: orgasm control. Practised by the Taoists since the Han Dynasty (more than 2 000 years ago), the idea was that while sex was an inevitable fact of life, dudes didn’t have to spill their ‘life force’ at the mere glimpse of a woman's ankle.

The solution? Develop techniques to prolong pleasure without orgasm, eventually achieving a state of such supreme control that the male could orgasm without ejaculation.

Today ‘edging’ draws on the idea of maintaining arousal without orgasm, but for both men and women

Of course, like many good ideas, these Taoist sex techniques survived history and there are some super-humans still practising them today.

We mere mortals, however, can dabble in orgasm control along simpler terms.  

Today ‘edging’ draws on the idea of maintaining arousal without orgasm, but for both men and women. And while the practice now may be more prosaic than spiritual, its fundamental principle can have a profound effect on your sex life.  

Learning to take your time

It’s a simple technique: just before you peak, you pull back from the edge, relax, and then work up to your climax again.

Think of edging as riding the wave of pleasure and choosing when to pull back and when to body surf to shore, instead of being whipped up by a wave and dumped before you’ve had a chance to enjoy your surf.

It’s part tease, part savouring the sexperience, without rushing to ‘end’ it with orgasm. In the pause moments between building your climax again, lie back, close your eyes and feel the sensations in your body.

Practicing solo

I’ve heard of edging as a form of self-care. I like this. Women, especially, are not used to taking the time they need to build desire to a high enough pitch for orgasm. Edging during masturbation helps you construct that experience for yourself.

For guys who struggle with ejaculating ‘too quickly’ during penetrative sex, solo play with edging will help them identify that ‘point of no return’ and practice working a pause into that.

Riding the wave together

Whether you’re vibing together or focusing your attentions on each other one at a time, edging during partner play is a great way to work those communication skills and learn how to be present.

Don’t freak out if your guy’s junk goes flaccid occasionally or you to need some lube. Those are the natural peaks and troughs of sex that takes longer than a few minutes.

Pay attention to over-stimulation which can lead to kind of drop off in pleasure and for some people can feel painful. Keep talking about what feels good.

Have fun with it

Don’t take your practise too seriously, especially if you’re trying to prolong the time he takes to ejaculate. If the experience is riddled with anxiety, you’re doing it wrong.

And accessorise your experience! Use lube, include toys and play with different forms of erotica. Above all, listen to what your body needs to feel good, even if that means trying out positions that might feel weird for you.

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