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December 16, 2021 56 min

The idea of what is involved in being "good in bed"  has a lot of factors, and staying power is certainly one of them.  Premature ejaculation is a source of anxiety for many men, and on the  other end of the scale, delayed ejaculation can cause similar issues. In  a bid to clear up some of the misinformation out there, urologist and  pelvic surgeon Rena Malik, MD addresses the average length of time that sex lasts in real life.

In  a new video on her YouTube channel, Malik refers to a study which  collected data from 500 couples around the world, who recorded the  duration of sexual intercourse using a stopwatch. The data is limited to  penetrative sex, excluding foreplay, and only heterosexual couplings  were studied in the research. Penetrative sex is measured in terms of  intravaginal ejaculation latency time (IELT), the time from the  beginning of penetration to ejaculation.

The  study revealed that the IELT which men consider to be the "ideal" length  of time is 16 minutes, but they estimate that the real time is closer  to 9 minutes. However, according to the study, the average IELT is  actually just 5.7 minutes.

Malik notes, however,  that the recorded times ranged from less than a minute to 55 minutes.  "Interestingly, it varied by location," she says, explaining that Turkey  had the lowest average IELT of 4.4 minutes, while the United Kingdom  had the highest IELT of around 10 minutes.

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