Remember the good old days when you defined every sexual act by the bases—first base was kissing, second base was a little under the sweater action, and so on? Back then, defining "sex" was as easy as counting up to home base; either you went all the way or you didn't. Unsurprisingly, sex has gotten a whole lot more complicated since then, probably because we've learned there's a heck of a lot more going on than four simple steps. Criteria for defining acts as "sex" or "not sex" changes from person to person, and it can depend on who's doing it, which body parts are involved, and even whether or not we orgasm, according to a new study published in The Journal of Sex Research. Researchers at the University of Utah, Salt Lake City surveyed participants men and women online about what they considered to be sex. They presented participants with 21 different types of sexual acts—including penetrative vaginal sex, anal sex, oral sex, 69, simultaneous masturbation, deep kissing, cybersex, and others—and asked them to rate the acts as "definitely sex," "probably sex," "probably not sex," and "definitely not sex.
What Exactly Counts as Sex?
What is Sex? - Defining Sexual Intercourse and What It Feels Like
Sexual intercourse or coitus or copulation is sexual activity typically involving the insertion and thrusting of the penis into the vagina for sexual pleasure , reproduction , or both. There are different views on what constitutes sexual intercourse or other sexual activity , which can impact on views on sexual health. Various jurisdictions place restrictions on certain sexual acts, such as incest , sexual activity with minors , prostitution , rape , zoophilia , sodomy , premarital and extramarital sex. Religious beliefs also play a role in personal decisions about sexual intercourse or other sexual activity, such as decisions about virginity ,   or legal and public policy matters. Religious views on sexuality vary significantly between different religions and sects of the same religion, though there are common themes, such as prohibition of adultery.
What is Sex?
When it comes to hooking up, some terms are clearer than other. You and your friends all probably agree that kissing with tongue is called a French kiss , and that "second base" means boobs are involved somehow. But when it comes to sex , there seems to be more confusion.
By Sabine Walter, Pierre A. What is sex, exactly? And when do you stop being a virgin? Sexual relations cover activities beyond intercourse: They also include outercourse, oral sex, and anal sex.