Next time you go to the gym, avert your eyes from the sweaty woman doing the super circuit because for all you know, she could be having an orgasm. Yes, be warned. This article could change the way you see the gym forever.
According to recent research women might not need a man, a vibrator or any other direct stimulation to orgasm.
Head researcher Debby Herbenick and her team at the Center for Sexual Health Promotion at Indiana University were inspired to research the alleged "coregasm" - named after the idea that stimulating the abdominal muscle can result in orgasm.
Herbenick pointed out that in spite of receiving much attention through urban legend and media focus, the coregasm has received very little actual research. In 1953, Alfred Kinsey reported on the phenomenon through information volunteered by a small percentage of a group of women they had interviewed.
Using an online survey, Herbenick found that 124 women who answered said they had experienced exercise-induced orgasm, while 246 reported experiencing sexual pleasure through exercise.
The researchers found that 40 percent of women from both groups said they had experienced this pleasure and/or orgasm on more than 11 occasions.
Those women who reported orgasm during exercise felt some embarrassment whilst exercising in public. They also said that while the physical experience might have been there, it was not accompanied by sexual fantasy or even thinking about someone they were attracted to.
Researchers looked into what type of exercise was most likely to stimulate orgasm and found that the abdominal workout was most strongly linked.
Of those who reported orgasm during exercise, 45 percent said it was during ab workouts, 19 percent linked to stationary bike, 9.3 percent to climbing ropes or poles, seven percent to weight lifting and another seven percent to running. The other percentages attributed their orgasms to various other exercises including yoga, swimming, aerobic and elliptical workouts.
Herbenick says that the team has yet to discover why certain exercises cause orgasm. Either way, she suggest that exercise might help enhance women's sex lives.
With sexual problems at the top of the list of health concerns for women - one in four women report not reaching orgasm during sex - these findings could help to confirm that exercise is an important part of a woman's wellbeing.
The results also turn another theory about female orgasm on its head: that it is in some way linked to sexuality and reproduction. In fact, further research into exercise-induced orgasm might show that orgasm is not linked to these two aspects at all.
Perhaps most importantly, studying exercise-induced orgasm might help women and scientists to learn more about the process of the female orgasm.