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Jelqing: What It Is, How to Try It & 35 Must-Knows Before You Stretch Yourself

In an effort to make their penis larger, some people will go to great, erm, lengths. But what is jelqing and does it even work?


For as long as the world has been turning, men have been obsessed with penis size. Whether it’s length, width, girth, or anything else related to its appearance, men are literally preoccupied with the whole thing. But surely jelqing takes it to a whole other, and possibly more painful, level?

You only have to look on the Internet to see a million and one so-called ways to make the penis larger.

Some work a little, while others are nothing but myths. You’d think men would have learned to love what they were blessed with, but no! New trends keep a-coming.

Before we get to the bottom of jelqing and what it is, let’s take a look at why it might have become quite popular. One study found that 45% of male participants were unhappy with their penis size! Either this study was performed in the sad land of little dicks, or men are developing a serious complex about their nether regions.

It’s no wonder new trends that promise to fix the whole issue keep emerging. [Read: Grower vs shower – How it’s different and ways to tell which penis is better]

Society makes men feel underwhelmed with their nether regions

But it’s no wonder when you think about it. All facets of society tell them that women love a big dick. Whether this is true or not depends on who you ask, as size preferences are as varied as fingerprints, but the myth still persists that bigger = better.

Still, one study used 3D models to find out the average size preference for women’s long-term lovers’ penises.

The findings? Most women preferred a penis size of 6.3 inches in length and just shy of 5″ in circumference.

While you have to say that all women are individual and like different things, it’s no wonder men feel so pressured to be on the bigger side.

But let us tell you a secret. It’s really not about the size, it’s about what you do with it. It’s no good having a huge member if you can’t use it properly. And that’s something most women will agree on. [Read: Why are men so obsessed with their penis size?]

What is jelqing? And the science behind it

So you want to know what jelqing is, how it’s done, is it safe, does it work, and… oh yeah, how the heck do you pronounce that thing? We’ve got you covered. We’re telling you all there is to know about the pros and cons of jelqing!

First, how do you pronounce it? Think “jerking,” but with a gel at the front. Gel + king = jelqing. You could also slang term it jelq, or jelk.

Jelqing is a form of manual stretching designed to lengthen the penis and make your erections stronger. Jelqing is a technique used on the penis that can be best compared to milking a cow. Hot, right?

It’s believed to have originated in early Arabic civilizations, so it’s been around for a while.

So, let’s talk science. Blood plays a pivotal role in jelqing. Don’t worry, it’s not nearly as creepy as it sounds.

Jelqing forces blood into your chambers, and ideally, over time, will expand how much blood your penis can hold. The theory goes that the bigger you expand your chambers, the larger your penis can get in both length and girth once it becomes erect. [Read: 37 health benefits of masturbation, bad side effects, and other must-knows]

How is jelqing performed?

If you really want to try this rather painful-sounding technique, here are step-by-step instructions on how to jelq your penis. However, we would advise you to read the rest of this feature before you do—it’s not exactly without its risks.

1. Start by getting your penis nice and warm. You can do this with a heating pad or a warm cloth.

2. Next, gently stretch your penis forward, to the right, to the left, and down below.

3. Lubricate your hand for easy jerking… Err, jelqing. [Read: How to use lube to liven up your sex life instantly]

4. With a half-chubbed penis in hand, arrange your index finger and thumb in an “A-okay” grip around the base of your penis.

5. Pull your hand forward toward the head of the penis.

6. Avoid jelqing the glans or head of the penis.

7. Repeat this process for 5 to 10 minutes a day, 3 times a week.

Most articles on the art of jelqing tell you to avoid performing the exercise on a fully erect penis. How it could not end up erect after all the lubing and stroking, we have no idea! [Read: Random boners – why men get these erections and 20 ways to get rid of it]

Are there any side effects to consider?

Since we’re talking about the yanking, pulling, and stretching of the base of the penis, it shouldn’t surprise you to know that there are a couple of risk factors involved with jelqing. In some cases, this technique may even lessen the effectiveness of your boner!

The most common side effects include:

1. Bruising on the penis

2. Pain or soreness along the shaft

3. Skin irritation from rubbing

4. Scar tissue resulting from rubbing too hard

5. Erectile dysfunction *ED* [Read: Why does losing an erection bother men so much?]

So, before you attempt jelqing, it’s vital to read into it fully and know what you’re getting yourself into. None of these side effects should be taken lightly and your sex life could be damaged forever if you go too far.

What precautions can you take to minimize side effects?

Despite the fact that jelqing can be dangerous if you don’t do it correctly, there are some ways to minimize the risks. After all, this practice has been around for centuries, so it’s not all bad.

Here are a few ways to minimize the risks associated with jelqing and perhaps gain some benefits instead. [Read: How to use a penis pump – the guide for the curious beginner]

1. Lube up your penis

This should be pretty self-explanatory. If you use lube, your hand will slide rather than tug and that’s going to minimize the chances of pulling too hard and causing damage. However, don’t use too much lube otherwise you might not get any grip at all.

2. Don’t get all the way hard

This one might be difficult, yet experts say not to be totally hard when jelqing. Of course, you can’t help it if it ends up that way mid-point, but at least start without a total boner. [Read: How to tell if a guy has a boner – 20 signs and turn-ons to get him hard]

3. Stop if you feel pain or discomfort

With all that tugging, it’s going to feel a bit weird, but it shouldn’t be painful or very uncomfortable. If it is, stop. Your body is telling you that you’re doing more harm than good.

Trust us, the “no pain, no gain” theory doesn’t work here.

4. Sit down or lean against a table or wall

The point here is that you’re supporting yourself so you’re not going to pull or tug too hard on your member. Doing so will obviously hurt and could cause damage. [Read: Sex positions that could leave you with a broken penis]

5. Don’t overdo it

Look, we get it. Some guys are obsessed with their penis size and are desperate for a larger one. But you should not do jelqing exercises more than two times per day at the very most.

Doing so increases the risk of injury, and then you won’t really care how big your penis is because you’ll be in too much pain!

6. Talk to your doctor

Talk to your doctor if you plan to do these exercises for longer periods of time each day, to do them more frequently, or over the long term.

Almost certainly your doctor will advise you not to, but we’re hoping that if you don’t listen to us, you’ll listen to them. [Read: Well-endowed – what it’s really like to sleep with a big dick]

If you are going to jelq away, do so in a slow manner. Penis exercises can be notoriously risky and dangerous if done improperly. The biggest mistakes men make when performing a penis exercise are:

1. Jelqing too quickly.

2. Doing too many reps before your body is used to the exercise.

3. Not warming up properly, which can lead to burst capillaries and discoloration. Ouch!

4. Jelqing for too long, which can cause swelling in the foreskin. And no, that won’t make it look bigger, it’ll just make it look weird and it’ll hurt. [Read: Painful sex – health reasons why sex can be painful for men]

Does jelqing work?

The answer to this question is highly debatable. Unfortunately, aside from many men’s online claims that they’ve achieved great results from consistent jelqing, there really isn’t any scientific evidence available to prove it.

Much like other ridiculous penis enlargement techniques *such as the penis pump*, some men say it isn’t worth a try, while others swear by their enhanced length and girth! So, does jelqing work? You be the judge. [Read: Penis facts! 18 shocking and weird dick facts you have no idea about]

At what point should you discontinue jelqing?

If you do try jelqing, listen to your body. You might assume that these exercises are supposed to hurt, but they’re not. If you feel pain then you have to stop immediately and don’t assume that you can work through it.

The only thing you’ll do is cause yourself an injury and a lot more pain to deal with. [Read: Curved penis – how, why, and tips and sex positions to flaunt a bent boner]

If you notice any of these symptoms, stop jelqing immediately:

1. Pain or discomfort

2. Itchiness

3. Bruising or discoloration

4. Red spots on the shaft

5. Numbness or tingling

6. Vein rupture—pain, swelling, bruising, bleeding, and any other rather nasty symptoms you might spot

Facts about penis size

Just as there are many different methods of making the penis bigger, there are also many different types of penises. The penis comes in all different shapes, lengths, and girths.

If you’re curious to learn more about the male sex organ or whether you measure up, we’ve calculated some quick penis fun facts. [Read: Do women like the penis? 22 things that make a perfect cock that girls love]

1. According to a 2015 study, the average erect penis size is 5.17″.

2. Flaccid penises average 3.61″.

3. Smoking can negatively affect sexual function. So, if you need an excuse to stop, you’ve found it!

4. A stretched penis is roughly the same length as it would be erect, although considerably more painful.

5. Only 6% of the male population uses extra-large condoms. Does that tell you something?

6. A huge 79% of men are growers; the opposite of showers!

7. The largest penis on record is a whopping 13.5″ erect and it belonged to a guy called Jonah Falcon. All the guys reading this are now open-mouthed in shock and all the women are cringing at the thought!

8. The smallest penis ever on record? 0.39″. [Read: Does size matter – big vs small dick and 24 good and bad qualities of both]

Alternatives to jelqing

If you think that jelqing sounds a little risky and painful, you’d probably be right. However, there are a few alternatives you might want to consider instead.

1. Penis pump

Penis pumps have long been used as a way to help with erectile dysfunction. Basically, you place your penis inside a tube and then, when pumped, the pressure helps to boost blood flow to the penis. This then makes the penis hard, and over time, helps to boost longer and stronger erections.

But does it work? Well, it has a lot more positive reviews than jelqing that’s for sure, and some doctors recommend using penis pumps for people who suffer from ED *erectile dysfunction*.

Studies show up to 90% of ED patients receive some benefit from using a penis pump. But of course, it varies from person to person. [Read: 19 signs to tell if your girlfriend has had bigger and more things that count]

2. Traction device

Yes, it sounds uncomfortable and when you learn about what these devices do, you’ll probably cringe, but they’ve been around for a long time.

Proof of their effectiveness is varied and there is no solid evidence to suggest they work, but many people do say they’ve found improvement in penis size.

Basically, this type of device stretches the length of your penis over time. It’s a little like jelqing in some ways, but rather than using your own hand and exercises, you use an actual device.

3. Accepting your penis size

You’re going to roll your eyes at this one but it’s the best alternative to jelqing, and even better than jelqing at all!

Basically, you should make peace with your penis size and learn to love it. In fact, learn to use it properly!

Women will thank you for this far more than they will thank you for putting in the time and effort with jelqing or a penis pump! [Read: The big penis – advice for the haves and have-nots]

Trying to make your penis bigger just hints at self-esteem problems and quite frankly, no device or exercises are going to help that if you can’t accept what you have already.

Jelq away but with caution!

The fact that jelqing has been around for so long says something. But that something also comes with many risks and the potential for serious injury.

If you want to try it, do so slowly and carefully. And remember, moderation is key!

[Read: Dad bod – what it is, the appeal, and 14 signs and ways to get soft and sexy]

So what is jelqing? Well, it’s either the biggest payoff from exercise since the six-pack, or a giant waste of your time. If you’ve tried jelqing and had fantastic or fantastically bad results, let us know in the comments below!

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Preeti Tewari Serai
Preeti Serai
Preeti, the founder of LovePanky, is an eternal optimist and believer in the beauty of love and life. With an exhaustive experience in love, relationships, and ...