How having sex in these positions can help you sleep BETTER

"I'M too tired" is usually the excuse to avoid a bedtime romp.

But now research has shown sex can actually help you sleep better – particularly when you do it doggy style.

More than 1,600 people had their sleep monitored in a study to see if they slept better following sex.

They were told to try out 25 popular sex positions over a three-month period to see which ones improved REM sleep.

REM sleep is a stage of sleep when you dream most vividly.

You cycle through all stages of non-REM and REM sleep several times during the night, with more REM sleep periods towards the morning.

The study by – a website that gives advice for a better night’s sleep – found doggy style is the sex position that sends people off into dreamyland the most.

After doing doggy, REM made up 33 per cent of participants sleep – a 43 per cent increase on the typical 23 per cent REM each night.

The lotus position (39 per cent), the eagle (35 per cent) and the bridge (30 per cent) are among the sex positions that increased REM the most.

However, trying out the corkscrew before bed has been found to decrease REM sleep the most – by 26 per cent.

Horizontal, better known as a "69er", decreased REM sleep by 22 per cent, and the spider by 17 per cent.

And standing sex also reduced REM sleep by 17 per cent.

What positions were best and worst for sleep?

Data shows the position: how much it increased REM sleep compared to the average of 23 per cent, and total average REM sleep after sex in this position.

Doggy Style: +43 per cent, 33 per cent
Lotus: +39 per cent, 32 per cent
Eagle: +35 per cent, 31 per cent
The Bridge: +30 per cent, 30 per cent
Cowgirl: +26 per cent, 29 per cent
Flatiron: +26 per cent, 29 per cent
The Caboose: +22 per cent, 28 per cent
69: +17 per cent, 27 per cent
Leap Frog: +17 per cent, 27 per cent
G-Whiz: +13 per cent, 26 per cent
Liberated Missionary: +9 per cent, 25 per cent
Reverse Cowgirl: +9 per cent, 25 per cent
Wheelbarrow: +4 per cent, 24 per cent
The Butter Churner: +4 per cent, 24 per cent
Table Top: +4 per cent, 24 per cent
Ballet Dancers: 0 per cent, 23 per cent
Spooning: 0 per cent, 23 per cent
 Magic Mountain: 0 per cent, 23 per cent
Pretzel Dip: –4 per cent, 22 per cent
Missionary: –9 per cent, 21 per cent
Valedictorian: –13 per cent, 20 per cent
The Spider: –17 per cent, 19 per cent
Standing sex: –17 per cent, 19 per cent
Horizontal 69: –22 per cent, 18 per cent
The corkscrew: –26 per cent, 17 per cent

REM sleep should make up just under a quarter of a person’s night sleep.

It is considered important because it stimulates parts of brain involved with memory and learning.

It also helps to process emotions, experts say.

But too much may be linked with depression, according to one concerning study, although it wasn’t clear which one causes the other.

Why does sex help with sleep?

The fIndings showed sex increased men’s REM sleep more than women’s – 12 per cent compared with two per cent.

Alex Ion, one of the contributors to, says this may be because  “women are more mentally stimulated during intercourse than men – who are more physically stimulated”.

“Women, are therefore more likely to be alert after sex, whereas men are typically tired after ejaculation”, they claimed.

But it also may come down to the fact women simply don't orgasm as much as men.

Previously research has suggested adults sleep better after climaxing – when a surge of hormones are released.

Alex said: “Aside from the physical nature of sex, the primary reason it can increase your REM sleep, is that during intercourse a hormone called oxytocin is released.

"Also known as the 'love hormone', oxytocin lowers cortisol levels [related to stress] in the brain making you feel more relaxed.

"High levels of cortisol result in anxiety, faster heart rate and ultimately a worse sleep!"

Women can experience a spike in oestrogen, which helps with REM sleep, while men get a surge of prolactin, which causes tiredness, according to Healthline.

Sex positions can help stimulate an orgasm, and therefore the release of sleepy hormones.

Doggy, the bridge and the eagle have all been pinned as top sex positions for women to reach orgasm. 

Alex said: "The positions ranking high in this study, such as ‘doggy style’, the ‘lotus’ position and the ‘eagle’, allow for deeper penetration and a greater orgasm, heightening the amount of oxytocin released.

"This also contributes to women seeing only a two per cent increase in REM compared to men who see a 12 per cent increase, as women are less likely to reach an orgasm during sex."

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