National Geographic Society

  • Connect:

Sex: How It Works Facts

A 3D scan showing the intensity of a couple's kiss.

A 3D scan showing the intensity of a couple's kiss. (View larger version)

Photograph by Pioneer Productions


  • Women on average think about sex 10 times a day, whilst men, almost double, thinking about sex almost 20 times a day. That's almost 7,000 times a year.

  • About 1.1 million American men and 800,000 women between the ages of 25 and 45 have never had sex.

  • Many people state that the optimum time for sex is between 3 and 13 minutes.

  • One study showed that 85% of men report that their sexual partner had an orgasm during their most recent sexual encounter, but only 64% of women report that they had an orgasm during their most recent sex.

  • One study showed that 70-80% of women usually achieve orgasm only by clitoral.

  • Sperm leaves the penis during ejaculation at about 28 miles per hour.

  • About 400 million sperm cells could fit on the head of a pin.

  • The clitoris has double the number of nerve endings as the end of the penis.

  • Despite numbering in their hundreds of millions, sperm only makes up about 3% of a man's semen.

  • It takes a sperm an hour to swim a few inches.

  • A teaspoon of semen contains about 5 calories.

  • It's thought that a longer ring finger results from higher testosterone exposure in the womb.

  • There are about 34 million people living with HIV worldwide.

  • Unused sperm is reabsorbed back into the body.

Michael Lauzon
Michael Lauzon

So, according to your TV show "Sex: How It Works", I'd be considered asexual because I don't have sex, and that's just wrong, the reason why I don't have sex is because women have never wanted anything to do with me, I've been asking girls out for almost 30 years, and in all that time I've been turned down every single time!

Kahron Spearman
Kahron Spearman

@Michael Lauzon ....also...stop masturbation immediately for 2-3 weeks.  Then restart and limit masturbation to like 1-2 times a week.  You have to "resensitize" your penis (or allow it to do so), and get away from your hand.  Once you're with a women, you're going to understand why that's important sexually.  The other benefit: increased focus on tasks that you really need to be doing, or starting.  Also, if you are watching porn, you should stop altogether.  I don't say this as a religious person, because I'm not.  But you need to have mental images of real women, with real stuff happening in life.  To me, porn should just be a very occasional, temporary stop-gap, to use when necessary.  But that's just me.

Kahron Spearman
Kahron Spearman

@Michael Lauzon If you're being serious in what you're saying....then, you are clearly doing something wrong.  Either you're putting them up on a pedestal, or acting beta, or being too forward (which isn't likely), - it's something.  My guess, with your attitude, is that you're being beta.  You look like a big guy - that doesn't have to be a negative.  Use it to your advantage.  Find clothing that fits better.  Get rid of that hat and your old "comfortable" clothing.  Get regular haircuts and keep your bread trimmed up.  Make sure your general hygiene is up to par, every day, i.e. the normal stuff a man needs to do, like showering, staying moisturized, and keeping your nails/feet neat and clean.  You should also be getting a face regimen started - I recommend just a cheap and basic - Cetaphil bar soap (dedicated just for your face), a good scrub, and moisturizer.  Hit the gym and start running outside more, while it's warm - you're in Toronto.  Drink more water and eat less sugar.  Take some public speaking classes or read up on books about being confident.  I would stay away from those "how to get women" books, for a variety of reasons.  Just don't do it.  Now, if you do these things, you will only have the girl's attention.  Once you have it, then ask her questions....see what sorts of interests she might have.  I'd advise you to meet women in places that include activities you already enjoy or would like to do - it's more likely she will be on the same wavelength as you.  Women aren't mysterious people in the mystical forest.  They have issues, they get worried, they take a sh*t - just like you.  Don't be suave, if you're not.  Don't pretend.  Don't be anything you're not - be you.  You are good enough as is, and just need some polish.  You're clearly not a quitter, because you keep trying.  Stay at it - all they can do is say yes or no.  Once you do get one, and you build up to mutually beneficial situation of some sort - cool.  Take your time with it, but be a man.  Be a gentleman, but never a push over.  Pay attention and really listen to her - she wants to be heard, first and foremost.....this is absolutely critical to remember.  Argue your points with respect.  Agree to disagree, if necessary, but be understanding.  Be aggressive, but never disrespectful.  Oh....last note - if you want a woman to STAY over once she's there, your spot needs to be clean, smell good, and no clutter - keep the kitchen and bathroom spotless and clothes washed.  Get rid of your linens and towels, and purchase some better ones.  A messy pad, just like a man's shoes and physical upkeep, says a lot about a man.