How To: The Rider (known as the “Cowgirl”)

The Cowgirl Position is due for a gender-neutral rebrand and is better described by the term The Rider. One of the three most common and popular sex positions, it places the receiver on top and in charge. Because it can be quite energy demanding, this guide includes multiple options to vary it and make it less strenuous for the riding top.


Just like the Missionary position, the Cowgirl is overdue for a rebrand. A genderless position, just as suitable for vaginal as it is for anal penetration, it deserves a more inclusive name. 

The colloquial term Cowpoke is a gender-neutral alternative to cowgirl or boy, which happens to take on a witty double entendre in this context. Personally, I like calling it The Rider, because it perfectly describes what you are doing in this position, namely riding.

How to Do It

The standard version of The Rider places the penetrating person horizontally on their back with the receiving person straddling their hips to ride or grind on their partner’s penis or strap-on toy.

A Break for the Penetrating Partner

The majority of positions place the penetrating partner on top, or in the more physically active role. The Rider, on the other hand, gives the person with the penis or strap-on a break from thrusting. 

On their back and with their hands available, they may instead focus on touching and caressing their lover, play with their breasts or nipples, and stimulate their clitoris or penis.

The Receiver is in the Driver's Seat

For the approximately eighty percent of vulva owners who cannot orgasm from penetration alone, being on top helps them position themselves in ways that reach either external or internal parts of the clitoris. Keep in mind that this may require some patient experimentation and that going slow, at least at first, makes it easier to map out what feels good for you and your partner.

Being in control is also advantageous for partners who are new to and experimenting with anal. When the one being penetrated has the chance to lower themselves onto their partner at their desired pace it also helps them relax, which again makes anal more comfortable.

A Titillating View

The vast majority of penetrating bottoms will get off on the marvelous view of their partner bouncing above them. But there are those who dislike being on top for that very reason, claiming it makes them feel too exposed and self-conscious about their bodies. Those with larger-sized breasts can additionally find all that bouncing rather uncomfortable. Wearing a bra for support, a nice top, a silk robe, or something else that makes you feel sexy and less self-aware can help ease the inhibition or discomfort.

Rider Variations

The Angle Makes All the Difference

In general, when your pelvis is angled forward, toward your partner, their penis or strap-on dildo will reach deeper and stimulate the cervix and A-spot of a vagina or the posterior walls of the rectum. When angled in the opposite direction, away from your partner, you are likely to stimulate the G-spot if you have a vagina, or the P-spot (prostate) if you have a penis.

Making the Rider More Sustainable

Hoisting yourself up and down a penis or dildo, especially in an upright seated position, can be far more strenuous than thrusting with a penis or dildo attached to you. (I speak from experience). If you wish to last on top for a while there are many things you can do to change it up and ease the load:

1. The Leg Wrap. Wrap your feet under your partner’s thighs for leverage.

2. Protect Your Knees. Place pillows under your knees for comfort.

3. The Rocking Chair. Take breaks from vigorous thrusting by sitting upright and rocking back and forth.

4. Holding Hands. Lean on your partner’s chest, or have them give you a hand by placing your palms in theirs, to help you push off them.

5. Camel Pose. Lean all the way back and back to hold onto your heels or your partner’s legs.

6. The Squat. Stand on your feet and squat up and down. This requires good knees and some leg strength but is a great way to vary the depth and get a proper bounce motion.

7. The Seated Bottom. Have the penetrating bottom sit up, in bed or on a chair, with their legs straight out, or in a lotus position. The riding top can hold onto their partner’s shoulders or thighs to lift themselves up.

8. Horizontal Ride. Lean all the way forward to lay on top of your partner, placing either your hands or underarms next to their face. From here you can move your hips without having to lift your entire upper body.

Enjoy the Ride!

The Cowgirl/boy/person/poke aka The Rider has earned its place among the top three most popular sex positions for good reason. By putting the receiver on top, it allows them to take charge of the depth, speed, and angle, and thus, their own pleasure. If you happen to find that position gets strenuous very fast, I hope this helped provide some ideas to help you stay in the saddle and enjoy the ride a bit longer.


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