What is the pretzel sex position? Plus, all the benefits of this intimate pose

The pretzel sex position is the new one to try for those who love getting intense and intimate

Couple laughing in bed together before trying out the pretzel sex position
(Image credit: Getty Images)

The pretzel sex position is a great way to spice things up in the bedroom and instantly improve intimacy with your partner, as it’s designed for those who love intense eye contact and dual stimulation. 

But don’t worry, unlike the doughy snack the position is named after, you don’t have to consort yourself into uncomfortable shapes to get the most out of this unique angle. It might take a couple of rounds to get right but when you find that perfect spot, the pretzel can deliver guaranteed orgasms for everyone involved. 

It’s one of the best sex positions to try with a partner as it has the potential to hit both the g-spot and clitoris at the same time - providing you have your best vibrator to hand. Here, two sex and relationship experts explain everything there is to know about how to do the pretzel sex position and all the benefits that come with it. 

What is the pretzel sex position?

The pretzel sex position is similar to scissoring, explains clinical sexologist Ness Cooper (opens in new tab). "Both bodies involved entwin in a tight knot that supports them during sex," she explains. "The partner being penetrated lies slightly on their side, and the one penetrating straddles their partner's bottom thigh as they penetrate them."

Pretzel sex position illustration

(Image credit: HMaddison)

As the top partner is facing forward and kneeling between the bottom partner's legs with their hands free, the position allows for plenty of intense eye contact and intimate touching.

While the pretzel is one designed for penile to vaginal sex, it's great for any individuals who want to explore penetration from a new angle, Cooper says, making it one of the best lesbian sex positions as well. "There’s nothing stopping those looking to explore penile to anal sex, or strap-on to vaginal or anal sex, trying the pretzel."

What are the benefits of the pretzel sex position?

1. Dual stimulation

If you're someone who struggles to orgasm through penetration alone, the pretzel should be the top of your list since you can include additional stimulation with hands, fingers, or one of the best sex toys

"If someone with a vulva is being penetrated during the pretzel, their partner's thigh can rub over the clitoris, adding extra sensations and stimulation. Depending on the position of the partner's thigh, the leg can move and allow easier access for fingers to stimulate the vulva and clitoris too," says Cooper, who is also founder of The Sex Consultant (opens in new tab) and in partnership with sex toy brand Lovehoney (opens in new tab)

2. Additional support

We all want to be as comfortable as possible during sex, which sometimes leads us to pick lazy sex positions like the speed bump or the butterfly sex position. But the pretzel is a great alternative with the same function as, despite its name, it's one of the most supportive and comfortable positions for anyone with back or other mobility issues. 

"The positioning provides support for both partners during sex as one partner's thigh threads between the other's," explains Cooper. "This makes it a good position for anyone who normally has a pillow under their back for extra support, since their partner's legs can act as the replacement."

3. Improved communication

There’s no denying that the pretzel is trickier than others as it requires partners to constantly communicate with each other to find out what feels good. “You may need to check in and ask your partner how it feels, whether you need to adjust, or explain how it could be better for the both of you,” Madalaine Munro (opens in new tab), a leading sexologist who specializes in helping couples improve intimacy in their relationship, says. 

While open and honest conversation should be part of any sexual activity, the pretzel forces partners to step up their communication level even more. "This position allows for deeper penetration, which may feel uncomfortable at times, so it may require an angle change or an adjustment,” she says. “This requires honest communication and saying what you want, which is a brilliant skill for outside the bedroom too.”

There’s even research to back up this idea, as a study by the University of Texas (opens in new tab) found that better verbal communication during sexual activity was associated with improved sexual function and experience. They also found it plays a huge role in improving women’s sexual desire overall, so if you’re struggling with low libido or want to learn how to have better sex, then the best thing you can do is start talking in the bedroom.  

How to make the pretzel sex position even better

To bring the intimacy to the next level in the pretzel position, you could move closer together as you reach climax. "When you are close to climaxing, the top person can lie down on top of the bottom person and the bottom person can wrap their legs around to create a slightly different position, where you can climax in even more closeness," Munro says. 

“This can be a beautiful way to transition through the waves of sexual intimacy and end up in an embrace at the end, which is also perfect for a post-sex cuddle.”

Grace Walsh
Grace Walsh

A digital health journalist with over five years experience writing and editing for UK publications, Grace has covered the world of health and wellbeing extensively for Cosmopolitan, The i Paper and more.


She started her career writing about the complexities of sex and relationships, before combining personal hobbies with professional and writing about fitness. Everything from the best protein powder to sleep technology, the latest health trend to nutrition essentials, Grace has a huge spectrum of interests in the wellness sphere. Having reported on the coronavirus pandemic since the very first swab, she now also counts public health among them.