What Makes Dancers So Good in Bed?
What do dancing and sex have in common? Well, for starters, both activities are primal, sensual, instinctive, even liberating. Both give you the chance to let loose, give into your physical urges and get lost in the rhythm.
There's no denying the link between dancing and sex. We just need to look to pop culture for dozens of examples. In "Dirty Dancing," Baby discovers her own sexual urges while learning ballroom dancing. In "Footloose," dancing is banned in the ultra-conservative town of Beaumont in an attempt to curb the sexual urges of the teenagers who live there.
It's no wonder that many people believe dancers are gods in bed. But just how much truth is there to that urban legend? Are dancers really extra-gifted at sex?
If you've ever watched a nature documentary, you already know that plenty of animals have their own "dances" that help them attract a mate. Many people believe that humans aren't actually all that different—that swaying your hips in the club is actually a biological ritual to help you suss out a potential companion.
"Darwin had a theory that dance was part of the evolutionary selection process for finding a good mate and we use dance to communicate how good [our] genes are," said Helen Birch, a U.K.-based sex and relationship expert and clinical hypnotherapist.
While the theory may sound a little far-fetched, some studies suggest there is some truth to it. Peter Lovatt, a dance psychologist (for real), wrote for Psychology Today in 2010 that at the more fertile stage of their cycle, "women move their hips more when they are dancing compared to when they are at the less fertile stage." Apparently, the majority of men find this fertile dancing more attractive, which suggests that we are biologically programmed to judge potential mates based on their dancing.
'Darwin had a theory that dance was part of the evolutionary selection process for finding a good mate and we use dance to communicate how good [our] genes are.'
And, according to a survey of 2,000 women published by the Daily Mail in 2003, 80 percent of women claim that men who are better, more extravagant dancers are more likely to perform well in bed. Yet another study found that men with higher testosterone levels were more likely to experiment on the dance floor and therefore experiment in the bedroom.
In other words, we can tell a lot about a potential sexual partner just by checking out their moves on the dance floor. "Based on these recent studies, Darwin's theory could well be more than an urban legend," Birch said.
Dancing, sex and you
Being a good dancer isn't just about proving yourself to potential partners. It can also be about improving your own relationship with sex.
"Dancing is a great way to boost confidence and become comfortable in your own skin," Birch said. "Sex and dancing are similar primal activities. They are both physical and require connection with your body. They both require you to get out of your head and into your body to be truly in the moment."
By getting used to rhythmic movements and connecting your mind and your body through dance, you can also begin to open up physically in the bedroom. If you find yourself feeling shy, closed off or unconfident, taking a few dance lessons may help you shed those layers of physical discomfort in the bedroom.
"Modern living leaves humans totally disconnected from their bodies," Birch said. So, it's more and more common to feel awkward or self-aware during sex. Experimenting with dance may help you to stop overthinking and start enjoying yourself a little more.
Dancing, sex and your partner
Dance training isn't just useful for your own confidence levels. After all, the more confident and free you feel, the more your partner will be able to relax, too.
Plus, you may pick up some physical skills from dancing that help you during sex. "Muscle memory kicks in," Birch said. "The sensual moves that are learned in a dance class are retained in the muscle memory and will be remembered during sex." In other words, if you learn a hip movement in a hip-hop class, you may find your body subconsciously repeats that movement in the bedroom—and chances are, your partner will enjoy it just as much as you do.
Not all of the theories are true
It's clear that there's a tangible link between sex and dancing. Nevertheless, this doesn't mean that all of the urban legends are true.
While experience with dancing can make you more in tune with your body, you don't have to be a professional ballerina or a contortionist to have great sex. Flexibility and perfect dance skills aren't really what matters in the bedroom—it's less about how good you are at dancing and more about how comfortable you feel in your own skin. As Birch put it, "Dancing reminds your body of how sexual it can be," regardless of your shape, size or ability.