Upgrade your missionary sex with seven variations, getting more out of the popular sex position.
Missionary sex position is one of the most popular.

People often call the missionary position (missionary sex) the classic, vanilla, or even lazy choice; still, humans commonly choose it as their go-to sex position.

In this article we also include a few positions that are related to missionary.

In this article:

Note: Read the whole article or scroll down to the KEY TAKEAWAYS section at the end of this article for a short summary.


  • There are several variations to make missionary sex better for both you and your partner. For example, you could change the angle of the woman's hips by holding her legs or propping her up with a pillow. Other ways include incorporating sex toys, blindfolds, and dirty talk.
  • It's believed that the term' missionary position' evolved from Christian Missionaries who encouraged new converts to engage in this position in the colonial era.
  • Compared to most other sexual positions, missionary is a low-energy, relaxed position with minimal risk of injury.

What Is the Missionary Position?

What is the missionary position?
Missionary Position. Credit: Steady Freddy®

The classic missionary position is a typical sex position that two people engage in during intercourse, where the female lies on her back while the male is on top.

Since this position requires both partners to be face-to-face, it promotes closeness and intimacy.

The missionary position gives you more eye contact and access to touch and caress one another during penetrative sex – and that's only the beginning of all that missionary has to offer!

ALSO READ: Sex Positions to Help Men Last Longer

Benefits of the Missionary Position

It builds intimate connections between you and your partner through touch and eye contact.

Missionary position is great for everyone, regardless of physique and body proportions.

Benefits of a missionary position include:

  • It allows for heightened intimacy
  • It's low-energy
  • It lets you focus on pleasure
  • It's a great first position to get into and out of easily
  • It builds intimate connections between you and your partner through touch and eye contact

How to Do It

Missionary sex is one of the most accessible sex positions. It offers pleasurable penetration for both partners and the most skin-to-skin contact.

From a man's perspective:

As the man (or penetrating partner), you'll want to get on top of your partner and position yourself between their legs as they lay on their back in front of you. You'll look down on your partner and have more control over the sexual act regarding both pace and depth of penetration.

From a male superior position, you can kiss, caress, and watch your partner from above. It is also one of the most unique positions to allow for easy access and clitoral stimulation during penetration.

From a woman's perspective:

As the woman, you'll lie flat on your back with your legs spread apart to make room for your partner to slide in between. From here, you can tilt your pelvis up, down or sideways to enhance pleasure.

As you look up towards your partner, you can use your hands to touch their body while pulling them in closer by wrapping your legs around their hips for additional stimulation.

Missionary Position Variations

The Bridge

Missionary Position The Bridge
Missionary Position (The Bridge). Credit: Steady Freddy®

To get into this position, start as you would when performing missionary.

Once you begin having sex, the woman will lift her hips off the ground, keeping her shoulders flat. At this time, the man can hold her body into position by placing both hands under her hips.

Inspired by the yoga position, the bridge causes tension in the woman's pelvic floor muscles, making penetrative sensations even more intense.

Knees Bent

What is the missionary position?
Knees Bent Missionary Position Variation. Credit: Steady Freddy®

In this variation, the woman starts by pulling her knees towards her chest in a bent leg position as she lays on her back.

The male partner will then kneel facing her, allowing her to rest her feet against his chest for optimal alignment and support during sex.

Around the Neck

Around the neck missionary position
Around the Neck Missionary Position Variation. Credit: Steady Freddy®

The female partner must lie on her back and pull her legs up tight towards her chest to get into this position.

Once in position, the woman will wrap her leg around her partner's neck during penetration.

On Her Side

On her side sex position. Credit: Steady Freddy®

As the name describes, this position starts with the female partner lying on her side. With one leg flat on the bed, the woman will raise the other high onto her partner in a "scissor" shape.


Acrobat missionary sex position. Credit: Steady Freddy®

The press-down is an intimate sex position that helps connect each other's bodies in more ways than one.

While engaging in missionary sex, the man will use one hand to push down lightly onto the woman's lower stomach.

During sex, this pressure can help stimulate a woman's G spot more intensely.

Prop Up

Prop Up Missionary Position Variation. Credit: Steady Freddy®

The prop-up puts the woman's pelvis in an excellent position for more pleasurable and deeper penetration.

Using a pillow, you will prop her hips into an upward angle so that her pelvis is lifted.

Spread Eagle

To get into the spread eagle position, the woman must start with her legs spread wide and to the side.

While kneeling, the man lies between her legs with his weight on his arms.

Like the classic missionary position, the spread eagle requires more flexibility but can offer more skin contact.

Standing Butterfly

Standing butterfly sex position. Credit: Steady Freddy®

Since the man needs to be standing, it's best to perform this position on the edge of a bed or sturdy table.

With the woman lying flat on her back, the man will enter her from a standing position and raise her pelvis upwards.

The woman can then rest her legs over his shoulders.


Seated missionary sex position variation. Credit: Steady Freddy®

This sexual position begins a little differently than most.

Instead of kneeling, the man will begin seated with his legs bent to the side of her body. Using this new angle, the woman will rest her legs over his shoulders as he uses his arms to pull her legs closer.

You can share control of the rocking motion for a more sensual experience.

The Squeeze

The squeeze missionary position variation. Credit: Steady Freddy®

This variation helps to introduce more depth of penetration and enhance skin-to-skin contact.

You'll begin in the regular missionary position, except with the man's body lengthened like he is performing a plank.

Next, the female partner will wrap her legs around his body below his hips and squeeze them tightly as he pushes his pelvis back and forth.

Slow and Steady

…work together and notice subtle changes in your partner's body language.

Sometimes, more speed does not mean greater pleasure.

Try slowing down the tempo and changing up the hip motion from back and forth to a circular grinding motion.

Remember to work together and notice subtle changes in your partner's body language.

ALSO READ: New Things to Try in Bed: 16 Fresh Ideas for Exploring Intimacy

How to Penetrate Deeper in the Missionary Position

The Prop Up variation creates the perfect position for a deeper, more enjoyable penetrative experience that can lead to more stronger orgasms.

One of the best ways to get deeper penetration is by changing the angle of your body. You can easily do this by placing a pillow below your partner's pelvis to elevate her hips (see the Prop Up variation above).

From here, you can get your partner to raise their legs over your shoulders so you have a firm hold on their body as you press your hips back and forth.

The Prop Up variation creates the perfect position for a deeper, more enjoyable penetrative experience that can lead to more stronger orgasms.

ALSO READ: What's your best sex position? Let's find out.


  • Human sexuality allows us to experience and express ourselves through sexual activity - in this case, with different sex positions that feel the best
  • The missionary position is simple yet exciting, increasing passion, intimacy, face-to-face connection, and pleasure for both men and women
  • Missionary sex offers many variations to explore to maximize pleasure, stimulate the clitoris and help you achieve an orgasm

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Medical Disclaimer: This article is for informational purposes only and is not intended to give medical advice or substitute for the medical advice of a physician.

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