What is Sexological Bodywork?

Sexological Bodywork was developed by Dr. Joseph Kramer in California in the early 1990’s.

It involves learning about human sexual function and combining this with embodiment techniques to create more harmony and pleasure in our experience of sex with our partner(s) and also with ourselves.

Sessions are delivered in a gender neutral language and are focussed on being sex positive and body positive, drawing on the concepts of Tantra, Taoism, Embodiment and the Anatomy and Physiology of the human body.

By listening to the body’s subtle clues and practising mindfulness in breath, sound, touch, and movement we can work directly with the nervous system to create new neural pathways for relaxation and pleasure in our bodies.

Heart crotch, Lorraine Pentello, Sexological Bodywork, Melbourne

How does it work?

Most people believe that the erotic touch of a lover and the clinical touch of a medical exam are the only ways that we can experience genital touch, but Sexological bodywork offers a different type of touch that is free from agenda.

It can be difficult to understand what this touch might feel like if we have only experienced these two examples of touch. The only way to truly know what it is like is to have a session.

In session the client is in complete control of what happens to their body, and they are free to explore their pleasure and arousal with gentle guidance.

There is no pressure to perform, reciprocate or please a partner, so clients are free to explore what pleasure feels like for them without having to worry about ‘getting it right’ for someone else; kind of like having a personal trainer for your sexuality.

With this type of touch we can learn about how our bodies work from an anatomical perspective as well as a pleasure perspective; we can learn how to move though shame, manage and change sensations of pain, address body image issues, and ultimately feel more pleasure sensations in our bodies.

The first time I tried this modality it was mind-blowing! To be really frank I found it quite challenging to have all the attention on me and my pleasure. I learned a lot about my body through this work. I overcame a lot of blocks and hurdles in my sexuality and continue to do so. I found it so rewarding that I signed up for the training.

Australian Sexological Bodyworkers are goverened by the Somatic Sex Educators Association Australia (SSEAA) and we work within their code of ethics, which includes practicing only one way genital touch from pratitioner to client, wearing gloves for all genital and anal touch and strictly prohibiting sexual relationships with clients.

Bum, Lorraine Pentello, Sexological Bodywork, Melbourne

What happens in a Sexological Bodywork session?

The session starts by setting an intention. This might involve learning how to relax while receiving pleasure, learning how to squirt or have G-spot orgasms, learning how to last longer or overcome erection difficulties, increase or decrease libido, overcome pelvic pain, genital sensitivities or remediate scar tissue from surgery or injury.

Once an intention has been figured out, your practitioner will offer a variety of different exercises and you can choose the option that resonates the most with you.

You are guided in this process, but ultimately what happens in the session is led by you.

You will never be expected to do anything that you are not comfortable with.

Sexological bodywork is a modality that works best when blended with the skills and techniques that the practitioner already has. Each practitioner brings along their own flavour to the sessions, so while there may be consistency in the general methods, how they are delivered will be up to your practitioner. This means that a session from one practitioner might look very different to a session with another.

In most cases a bodywork session starts with a body scan. This is a body awareness meditation where we draw our attention through the different parts of the body, we may find areas of tension, numbness or pleasure. If you’re working with me we might also do gentle bodywork such as craniosacral therapy or light feather touch if that is something that you feel comfortable with.

Our bodies know what they want and need and are a constant source of information for us. Throughout the bodywork session we check in and access the body’s wisdom.

Most sessions end in a similar way to how they start with a short 3-5 minute breath meditation similar to savasana at the end of a yoga class called integration. This allows the nervous system time to encode the information it has just learned and create new neural pathways for pleasure. This means that next time we try the exercise it should be easier to do.

Often l find music to be quite useful in integration and I will play soft music or sing gently to you in a soothing lilt (only if that feels right for you, we will discuss these boundaries before we start).

Home play exercises are also a great way to integrate the information from the session and are often co created during the session. This gives you the opportunity to practise the things you have learned between sessions. This can involve solo practices as well as partnered exercises.

How many sessions and how regularly will I need them?

Everyone is different and their needs and expectations might change over time too.

In the beginning you might need more frequent sessions to master the techniques then top up sessions after that if you would like to deepen your connection with your body and/or your partner(s). Some people start with fortnightly or monthly sessions then assess their progress after a few months.

Others might just want one or two sessions close together and feel like they got what they needed from it.

You don’t need to know all this before you start. You can work with your Sexological Bodyworker to figure out the best path for you.

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