How to Masturbate: Advice for Men

Written by the Manual Team · Medically approved by Dr Earim Chaudry - MD

In 30 seconds…

Masturbation is a wonderfully healthy thing to do. It is incredibly common, both in and out of relationships, and it can improve both your sex life and your general well-being. Self-pleasure is never something to be ashamed of.

Yet, given that we men don’t talk about it enough, it can be helpful to hear advice on how to masturbate properly. Take it slowly, explore different holds, speeds, and movements, and find what you enjoy. Masturbation – like all pleasure – is personal.

Do it safely, though, and if you feel like you are masturbating compulsively, it is time to change your habits. Avoid porn, get exercising, and talk to someone – no matter how embarrassed you might feel.

How to Masturbate Enjoyably

People masturbate. It’s a natural part of life – and it is hugely common among all people, both men and women, from an early age. Whilst the exact figures on masturbation rates differ widely, it’s safe to say we all do it – or, at least, we’ve all done it.

And that’s a great thing. Studies show that masturbation reduces your stress levels, helps you sleep, and reduces the risk of prostate cancer. It’s excellent for your well-being – and, put simply, it can be fun. 

Yet, as with all things we do, we can get into a bit of a rut with our masturbation habits. Some of us may even do exactly the same as we did the very first time we gave it a go. Whilst that’s fine, you might be missing out on some joy.

In this article, we’re going to give you some advice on how to masturbate properly. From some masturbation best practices to what to do if it doesn’t feel right – or if you’re worried you do it too much – we’ll cover the lot.

 

Tips on How to Masturbate Properly

There is no way to masturbate “properly” in any specific sense. There’s no real right and wrong when it comes to self-pleasure. However, if for any reason you are unsure about masturbation best practices, here are some tips to get you started – or to get you changing things up a little.

 

Take Your Time

When masturbating, there is no need to rush. In one study, researchers found that the average time men took to ejaculate when masturbating was just under five minutes. However, there isn’t any upper limit – so go for as long as it is enjoyable.

Something that some researchers have found is that the habit of rushing may come from early experiences of masturbating, when you reached your peak as fast as possible to avoid being caught. You don’t need to do this. You’ll probably enjoy it more if you don’t – and you may last longer during sex if you take your time when going solo.

 

Remember It’s Not All about the Orgasm

In the same way, masturbation doesn’t need to be a race to orgasm. Men in particular associate the pleasure of sex with the orgasm, yet this doesn’t need to be the case. As you will know, the whole process of masturbation can be enjoyable too.

So, rather than focusing on your destination, enjoy the road.

A technique known as “stop-and-start” can be helpful here. Masturbate until you feel like you are about to come, and then let your arousal reside until you are flaccid. Then start up again until you are about to come and then ease off. On the third time, let yourself come.

It’s a technique that can help you last longer during intercourse – but it also makes it less about the orgasm.

 

Change Things Up: Speed, Grip, Movement, Even Position

If you have a fairly predictable approach to masturbation – in which you follow the same pattern every time – it might be nice to change things up. You might find that you like something else a little more.

Try changing the speed at which you move, try swapping hands, or try to hold yourself a different way. If you are always lying on your back when you masturbate, get on your hands and knees or stand. It can change the experience dramatically.

 

You Needn’t Just Focus on the Penis

The penis isn’t the only sensitive place for men. In fact, incorporating other parts of your body into your masturbation might bring extra pleasure.

Your balls and your perineum – the bit between your balls and your anus – are both highly sensitive. Meanwhile, don’t be shy about exploring anal play too.

 

Try a Sex Toy

Similarly, you needn’t limit yourself to your hands: the market is full of sex toys that can take your masturbation to a new level. Fleshlights, prostate stimulators, and pocket strokers are all popular sex toys that you can try.

 

Let Your Pleasure Guide You

Most importantly in all of this, let your pleasure and curiosity be your guide. There’s no obligation to take an hour-and-a-half when masturbating, nor are you doing self-pleasure wrong if you don’t use a sex toy.

Do what you enjoy – and don’t be afraid to discover what that might be. Just do it safely.

 

How to Masturbate Safely

Many men struggle to talk about masturbation. Whether it is because of embarrassment, shame, or fear of judgment, this can be a little problematic – as it makes it difficult for people to know what is normal.

Besides enjoying yourself, if there is one thing to note in an article on masturbation best practices, it is that you do it safely. We mean this both physically and psychologically. Because whilst there are lots of myths about masturbation, it is true that you can hurt yourself whilst masturbating and that you can masturbate too much.

 

Why Does it Hurt to Masturbate?

Masturbation shouldn’t hurt your penis. Yet, if you like to jerk off vigorously or you like to hold your penis quite tightly, it is possible to cause it a little damage.

This can be as mild as chafing, little tears in your skin, or oedema – when your penis tissue swells. All of these should heal in a day or two at most.

Some men can develop what is called Peyronie’s disease, when you build up scar tissue within your penis. Though rare, this can be permanent and painful when masturbating or having sex. It’s best to have a doctor check this out.

 

How Much Masturbating is Too Much?

There is no hard number that constitutes “too much” masturbating. Some people can healthily do it twice a day, whilst others may think it a lot if they do it twice a week. There is no right answer to this.

What is more important is your attitude and mindset when masturbating. Twice a day can be healthy if it is not affecting the rest of your life. However, if you think about masturbation often throughout the day, or if you feel anxious about the next time you will be able to pleasure yourself, you might be showing some signs of addiction.

The same applies if you are cancelling social engagements to masturbate, or if it is damaging your relationships.

 

How to Stop Masturbating Compulsively?

If you feel like you are masturbating compulsively – i.e. if you cannot resist the urge to masturbate or if it is interfering with your wider life – there are ways to cut down. Whilst masturbating should be a pleasure, overindulgence can be the sign of a mental health issue, and you should talk to a specialist.

In the meantime, however, there are ways to reduce the amount that you masturbate.

These can include interrupting the habits that usually accompany it. Try to avoid watching porn, for example. Or, even prior to that, change things up so that you don’t relax on your bed or in your bedroom – or wherever it might be that you masturbate. Sit in the kitchen, for example, instead.

Exercise can help too. The endorphins you get from masturbating are released by exercise too, whilst it can also make you tired and sleepy enough to not need to masturbate in bed.

At some point, professional help might be necessary. Compulsive masturbation can be a serious issue. Even if you cannot make yourself stop, a professional will be able to.

 

Key Takeaways

Masturbation should be enjoyable. And whilst men’s pleasures and desires are as varied as men themselves, masturbating safely and healthily should be a priority.

If you feel like you are masturbating excessively, or if you are not enjoying it, stop, or talk to someone you trust. Masturbation shouldn’t be something that we are ashamed of.