Ian Allen for Self Magazine
Sex's role in athletic performance has been hotly debated for decades—especially when it comes to the love lives of Olympic athletes. In light of the upcoming Olympic games in Rio, adult store Adam & Eve teamed up with Dr. Mike Young, an Olympic coach, to determine exactly how sex and masturbation influence a person's athletic ability. The duo monitored the sexual activities of 21 male and female collegiate and national athletes over the course of three weeks, reporting on their performance in speed, strength, and agility exercises during that same period.
Despite the small focus group (21 athletes can hardly be representative of the human population), the resulting report provides a fascinating look into the physiological and psychological side effects of sex—whether with a partner or by oneself. In summation, sex's impact on athletic performance is entirely dependent on the individual person, and could be considered a mind game more than anything else.
"When it comes to sexual activity and athletic performance, it really is a case where an individual's perception is the same as their reality," said Dr. Young in his concluding statement. Despite this somewhat generalized finding, the study did uncover some interesting highlights. For example, more frequent sex and masturbation was correlated with lower running times, higher vertical jump heights, and greater overall strength in both women and men.
But if anecdotal evidence is any indication, many Olympic athletes seem to believe that sex positively influences their performance in the games. "There's a lot of sex going on at the Olympics," Hope Solo, goalkeeper of the U.S. women's soccer team, once said. "I've seen people having sex right out in the open, getting down and dirty on the grass, between buildings." Similar stories were reported by athletes from the table tennis team and the Olympic organizers.
Check out Dr. Young's full report here, and tell us: Have you noticed a similar correlation between your sex life and athletic abilities?