Women are trying out a TikTok theory that ab exercises can stimulate orgasm. An expert says a ‘coregasm’ is possible.

Women are trying out a TikTok theory that ab exercises can stimulate orgasm. An expert says a ‘coregasm’ is possible.

  • Women are trying out a theory shared on TikTok that ab exercises can stimulate orgasm.
  • Dr Debby Herbenick, who has extensively researched the phenomenon, says it is called a “coregasm.”
  • While the causes aren’t entirely clear, they can often follow intense abdominal training.

Women on TikTok are testing out a theory that ab exercises can make them orgasm. According to a sex and exercise expert, it’s a real thing, and it’s known as a “coregasm.”

The theory has been around a long time, but has resurfaced thanks to Annie Knight, a fitness and lifestyle TikToker from Australia with 18,000 followers, who posts videos about her thoughts, workouts, and life in Brisbane. She shared a TikTok on September 17 which received 1.4 million views. 

“We need to discuss the fact that women can have orgasms from doing ab workouts,” Knight said in her TikTok. “This was all news to me. Like, I did not know this until I saw a TikTok and then I was talking to two of my friends and I was like … this can’t be true. Who has an orgasm doing an ab workout? And both of them went really silent.”

Knight said it had happened to both of her friends, who told her they cannot do certain exercises at the gym such as the plank, or use ab-training machines, out of fear they will orgasm in public.

“Anyway, you can imagine I’ve been doing ab workouts ever since,” she said.

Several women have used Knight’s audio on their own TikToks where they try it out, with varying degrees of success. There have been 18 videos posted in the last two weeks where women try out various ab exercises at home or at the gym to try to reach orgasm.

Fitness influencer and personal trainer Jessica Davidson was one of them, who filmed herself doing leg lifts while hanging from a pull-up bar.

“Yeah look it happens,” she wrote as the caption on a TikTok where she appears to stop during a set and collect herself. “Don’t ask me why or how.”

Coregasms are real and often occur due to intense ab work

Dr Debby Herbenick, a professor at the Indiana University School of Public Health and author of the book “The Coregasm Workout,” who has published two papers on the phenomenon, says it is commonly called a “coregasm,” but known scientifically as an exercise-induced orgasm (EIO), as Insider’s Gabby Landsverk previously reported.

“It is possible to orgasm from a workout,” Herbenick told Insider.

The first mention of EIOs dates back to Alfred Kinsey’s work on human sexuality in the late 1950s and early 1960s, but Herbenick says she has published the only two papers on it. Both men and women experience EIOs, Herbenick said, and her 2021 study of over 2,000 people over the age of 14 found that 9% of people overall had ever had one, and closer to 10% for women.

While the causes of coregasm aren’t entirely clear, they are often experienced following intense abdominal training

“The most common forms of exercise are those that demand a great deal of engagement from the core abdominal muscles,” Herbenick said, such as pull-ups, crunches, or leg raises, wither lying down or using gym equipment like a captain’s chair or Roman chair, where the body is supported on elevated arm rests and the torso vertical against a chair back.

You’re unlikely to have a coregasm from, say, 10 crunches, because that doesn’t exhaust the core for most people. It’s more often in the range of 50-200, according to Herbenick.

“For exercises like crunches, the key is engagement and seemingly to exhaust the core,” Herbenick said.

However more demanding exercises like pull-ups, which require strong core engagement, can cause EIOs after just 5-8 repetitions.

Exercise also means different things to different people, said Herbenick. Some people experience one by doing household chores, such as sweeping, or from physical labor such as lifting airline baggage or heavy equipment.

“I’ve often heard from folks in the military as well as elite athletes who have experienced EIO,” she said.

Herbenick added that it is perfectly normal and there is no reason to believe it is harmful.

“Many women in particular feel empowered by the experience,” she said. “Though certainly, some learn to do certain exercises in private if they find it difficult to hide the fact that their body has had an orgasmic response.”

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