Penetrative sex feels amazing…if you have a penis. Who among us doesn’t love a long session with hard thrusting? The issue is, your partner may not be able to orgasm through intercourse alone. In fact, studies indicate that only about 20% of vulva owners can orgasm from typical P-in-V intercourse; the rest require some form of clitoral stimulation to climax. Problem is, “Most sex positions fail to provide clitoral stimulation given the distance between the clitoris and the vaginal entrance,” explains Ian Kerner, Ph.D., LMFT, sex therapist, and author of She Comes First.
This is where the coital alignment technique (CAT) sex position, comes in handy. The coital alignment technique is a sex position that helps stimulate the external portion of the clitoris during P-in-V sex; the focus is less on thrusting and more on grinding. “Psychotherapist Edward Eichel developed the technique in the 1980s in an effort to close the orgasm gap,” Kerner explains.
Here’s everything you need to know about how to do it—so both you and your partner can get off.
How to Do the Coital Alignment Technique (CAT) Sex Position
In this position, the partner with a vulva should lie on their back with their legs comfortably spread, as they would in missionary position. On top of them, the person doing the penetrating should raise themselves on their arms with their shoulders high and their back arched. “In yoga, the position would be very similar to the upward facing dog position,” Kerner explains.
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The key is for the penetrating partner to shift forward, so their penis or dildo is pressed against their partner’s pelvis pointing down, rather than up. This way, they rub against their partner’s external clitoris on their way to entering the vagina. “The clitoris is being stimulated by the top (dorsal side) of the penis and benefiting from the pressure and friction of the vertical movement,” Kerner explains.
Remember, the focus here isn’t on thrusting. This is not a position for deep penetration. “A lot of the time, the male partner isn’t inserting much more than the head of his penis,” Kerner says.
Here’s what the CAT position looks like:
It might take some adjusting to find the exact angles that feel best for you and your partner. It might be helpful to put a pillow underneath your partner’s back—this will help them angle their pelvis upward, allowing the top side of your penis to stimulate their clitoris more directly.
“Often, the partner with the vagina will wrap their legs around their partner’s waist, helping to create the seal between pelvises and allowing partners to get in sync in a rocking motion,” Kerner adds.
Are there any drawbacks to the CAT sex position?