Let’s be honest: When we see sex in movies or television, we rarely see people over 60 enjoying it. We are not given enough opportunities to remember that many couples in their 60s, 70s, and beyond lead active and fulfilling sex lives. Every day at Sportsheets, we set out to make sex more inclusive and accessible to as many people as possible. And that most certainly includes seniors and their partners. We know that sex over 60 is a reality (a delightful reality), and we have advice, toys, and aids to help you and your partner make it satisfying and fun.
But specific needs, wants, and abilities change as we grow older. So while not all of these tips may apply to you, we hope that some of these resources can help you maintain a satisfying sex life as you and your partner age together.
We’ve certainly said this before, but fulfilling and satisfying sex over 60 starts with open communication between partners. It’s a mistake to think that the need for communication diminishes as we get older or, worse, to think that you already know all that you need to understand about sex—or your partner. Your sex needs and abilities and desires change with time, and so it’s important to keep the discussion going—even if you and your partner have been together for many years or decades. When considering specific topics to discuss, keep in mind:
We’ll be blunt: STDs in people over 45 are a huge and growing problem. You may have grown up in a time when public education and discussion about safe sex was much more rare—but today, all the knowledge you need is at your fingertips. That’s why you should make it a point to talk about options for safe sex with your partner, even if pregnancy is no longer a risk for you.
Age can factor into your sexual health and performance in a myriad of ways. Below we discuss issues surrounding erections and lubrication in more detail, but changes can happen across the entire body. Do you have a stiff neck? Pain in an elbow or knee? How’s your blood pressure? Sex can be a full-body experience (though it doesn’t need to be!), so make sure to be clear with your partner about how your body feels, and how that affects what you want to experience.
Many people find a new freedom or willingness for experimentation as they age, and for some, sex over 60 can be some of the most adventurous of their lives. Are there new experiences you or your partner would like to have? You are never too old to experiment.
That said, every part of your body likely doesn’t work or feel quite the same way it did when you were younger, so you shouldn’t expect or try to make your sex life the same, either. And let’s emphasize: we’re talking about your sex life changing, not diminishing. A lifetime of experience—and years of shared intimacy for long-term couples—can lead you to intensely passionate sex. You may just want to keep a few concepts and positions in mind.
Many over 60 prefer sexual positions that ease the pressure on their joints and shift focus to mutual satisfaction and away from intense physical stamina. Below are five fantastic positions for sex over 60, along with some options for toys and aids. Remember: sex toys are not just for the young! They are fun tools that can enhance the pleasure and satisfaction for all partners.
This is an ideal position for many senior partners. If you experience pain or difficulty standing for long periods or leaning backward, then the flexion of this position may bring some relief to your back and your hips. Spooning is perfect for intimate sex that doesn’t require aggressive movement of the lower back and hips.
This classic can be adapted to lessen the pressure and agility needed to perform it. To modify this position, have the receiving partner kneel in front of the bed, with a pillow beneath their knees and their belly and chest pressed firmly into the bed. This will ease the pressure on their hips and back, and makes use of the bed for stability. You can also place a pillow underneath the forehead for additional support.
Both partners should lie down on their backs, nestled closely side-by-side. Then, the receiving partner should throw one leg over their partner’s and position themselves at an angle that allows for entry. This position takes a lot of stress off of the lower back and shoulders.
We mentioned this position as an excellent option for wheelchair sex, because it allows for deeper penetration while using the chair for stability and comfort. You should sit in the chair, with your back flush against the backrest for support, and have your partner sit on your lap, with their legs and feet over yours. Your partner can use the armrests for stability, and control the angle, speed, and depth of your sex. Any chair or seat in your home with a firm base and a straight back can be used for this position.
If you have joint pain or osteoporosis, sex that requires you to squat your knees or be on all fours can be painful. Standing sex eases stress on the knees and back. Try standing with your back to your partner, and your upper body supported by leaning against a wall or a ledge (a kitchen or bathroom counter with a pillow for your elbows can provide a lot of support). Your partner can enter you from behind while reaching ahead to use the same ledge or wall for support.
When we think about and discuss sex, the focus is often on intercourse itself. And yet as we grow older, natural changes to the body can pose challenges to intercourse. After menopause, many women find that they do not naturally lubricate as much as before. Similarly, up to 60% of men in their 60s experience problems with erectile dysfunction. But challenges are not foregone conclusions.
As we said when discussing sex with paralysis and sex as a quadriplegic, there are a number of potential solutions to issues with erection or lubrication. For men who can become aroused but have difficulty keeping the erection, a cock ring or harness with a cock ring are both inexpensive ways to boost your confidence in the strength and sustainability of your orgasm. Prescription medications are effective for some men, and your local health supply store is likely to offer a variety of over-the-counter remedies promising more vigor in your erection. Meanwhile, lube is easy to buy and will become your best friend if you notice a change in your level of lubrication. Some women report increased vaginal sensitivity after menopause, so it’s especially important to make sure that you and your partner are prepared with lubricant.
Some senior men will experience limited benefits from erectile interventions, and some women over 60 report intense pain associated with intercourse. At first, it’s probably going to be difficult to think about sex differently than you have most of your life. That’s okay—give yourself the time to adjust, but keep in mind that there’s (most definitely!) more than one way to have great sex. It’s worth remembering that only a small percentage of women—25%—report consistent orgasms from intercourse. You can view this as an opportunity to focus on other kinds of touching and pleasure. For example:
Massages release endorphins, relaxes muscles, and can be deeply intimate and erotic. Using a finger massage kit, in or out of the shower, will heighten the stimulation your partner feels and can be very easily combined with oral sex.
Masturbating with your partner can be an extremely satisfying and fun experience. Some couples like to lie next to one another on the bed while they masturbate, hearing and feeling their partner’s pleasure. Other couples like to watch one another masturbate. And some partners like to help masturbate one another. If you’re experimenting with your partner and masturbation, try incorporating a man sleeve or a silicone vibrator.
You can use these toys to build to different levels of arousal and stimulation. A tickler will let you playfully explore your partner’s body with light sensations. A whip, flogger, or paddle are perfect if you and your partner want to play with the line between pleasure and pain.
No sex toy is suddenly ‘off the table’ when you hit a certain age. Find something that you love, that works for you, and embrace it. But if you’re not sure where to start, some of the following toys may be particularly suited to sex as an older adult.
A doggie-style strap can be used in a number of positions beyond just doggie-style, to let one partner create and control motion and thrust with their arms more than their hips or lower back. It can also be used to stabilize either partner.
Tethers and cuffs have so many uses. If you and your partner want an introduction to bondage and restraint, this is a good place to start. More than that, you can use the cuffs and tethers to stabilize your arms and legs in a variety of sexual positions.
You can stabilize yourself for a variety of positions—particularly standing sex—with the suction handle, which will attach to flat smooth surfaces, whether the shower or in other rooms in your home.
Especially after menopause, discussing and planning for lubrication is an important conversation between partners.
Toys like the man sleeve are great for individual satisfaction or mutual masturbation.
Adjustable nipple clips attach to either partner’s nipples, creating a light (or hard, depending on your preference) pinching sensation.
You can use a cock ring to increase sensitivity and sustain an erection longer.
A strap-on with a hollow dildo, the Everlaster comfortably fits a soft or semi-erect penis, and can be used for sex with erectile dysfunction or to continue sex after orgasm.
Anal beads are wonderfully stimulating on their own for both partners, and some men use them to help achieve an erection through prostate stimulation.