Should sex last 5 minutes or two hours? Should time even be a measurement of success in the sack? No matter the answer, most people take note of how long they last in bed — and given these private (or public) musings, there are plenty of “misunderstandings and expectations that are just not based on facts and science,” says John Wincze, clinical professor in psychiatry and human behavior at Brown University. So what’s the truth of the matter? Here, with help from Wincze, are just the facts.
Most Men Last from 1 to 10 Minutes
The duration of sex has been studied a lot. Both masturbation and vaginal sex have been timed and surveyed, and the results fall within a similar, and wide, range. Most sexual encounters, from the time of penetration to orgasm, last from one to 10 minutes. Wincze says, given all the studies that have contributed to this estimate, this range encompasses about 90 percent of the male population.
Sex Therapists Think 7 to 13 Minutes is the Sweet Spot
For a finer understanding of general expectations, Penn State researchers surveyed 50 American and Canadian sex therapists in 2010 about what timing the experts thought was best. The therapists said that three to seven minutes was “adequate” and seven to 13 was “desirable.” They said one to two minutes was likely too short for most people, but that 10 to 30 minutes was probably too long.
Recently, an app that measures sexual activity released data that revealed how long users in different states seemed to be lasting. According to a story by Nerve, the Spreadsheets app recorded average durations that lasted from 1:21 (Alaska) to 7:01 (New Mexico). This app does not account for foreplay.