By Moira Bryan

Whether they’re taking part in a drop-in game of basketball, playing for the NAIT Ooks or representing your country at the Olympics, the topic of whether or not you should be getting in some pre-game action can come up.

One study published in Biological Psychology found that penile-vaginal sex led to lower blood pressure during times of stress, with this affecting men more than women. This suggests that people who have sex are better able to manage themselves during times of stress.

While sex can be a way for people to release stress and lift their spirits before a game, some athletes prefer to keep it in their pants on game day.

“No sex on game day,” said one men’s hockey player. “It tires me out and I can’t focus very well.”

When men orgasm, one of the chemicals released in the brain is prolactin. This hormone can decrease levels of testosterone in men and counteract the effects of dopamine, which helps regulate attention and satisfaction. This can explain the loss of focus and energy if athletes get it on before the game. For some athletes, giving your- self a bit of recovery time between sex and game-time is key.

“If I have sex in the morning before an evening game, I’m good, but if I do it too close to the game then I won’t play well,” said a men’s basketball player. “It’s not even that I’m tired, I’m just unfocused a bit and I can’t really get in the groove of the game.”

For women, the effects can be the complete opposite. Some athletes say that sex can get them in the perfect mood before the game.

“I had sex before a game once and it may have been the best game I ever played,” said a women’s hockey player.

Even Ronda Rousey says that sex can give her the extra boost she needs.

“I try to have as much sex as possible before a fight,” Rousey said to Jim Rome back in 2015.

Whether or not sex before a game will boost your performance or not is dependant on the person. Multiple studies have shown that it’s more beneficial for women compared to men. Regardless, you may want to give yourself a bit of recovery time and not go at it immediately before the whistle blows.