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Pegging (sexual practice)

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A naked man is on all fours. A naked woman is knelt behind him wearing a pink strap-on dildo. The woman is preparing to penetrate the man's anus with the dildo.
A woman pegging a man doggy style with a 4-strap harness and dildo

Pegging is a sexual practice in which someone (usually with a vagina) performs anal sex on someone else by penetrating their anus with a strap-on dildo.


The neologism "pegging" was popularized due to the sex education movie Bend Over Boyfriend released in 1998. After it became the winning entry in a contest for the "Savage Love" sex advice column, held by Dan Savage in 2001 upon observing that except for the phrase "Strap On Sex" used by Queen and her partner Robert in their national lecture series (Robert was the original Bend Over Boyfriend at the Good Vibrations lectures). The concept lacked a common name and there was no dictionary entry for the act.[1][2] Other words include "buggery" or "sodomy", but these refer to anal sex in general.[2] "Strap-on sex" can be used for vaginal or anal intercourse between people of any gender using a strap-on, and is thus less precise than pegging.[3] Some queer people prefer "strap-on sex" instead of "pegging" because they feel the latter is too hetero and cis centric.[3]

Beckett and Miller use "pegger" and "peggee" to refer to the person penetrating and the person being penetrated; "top" and "bottom" are also used.[3]


Pegging is penetrative sex with a strap-on dildo, usually anal penetration. It is usually defined as a heterosexual practice in which a woman penetrates the anus of a man.[3] This definition of pegging is very centered around cisgender and heterocentric identities. However, anyone can be penetrated anally regardless of their genitals or gender.[2]


The person penetrating their partner uses a strap-on dildo, often a silicon phallus, attached with a harness or strapless (a dildo that also penetrates the pegger).[3] Use of lubricant is recommended.[3]

Pleasurable aspects

Stimulation of the anus, rectum, and especially the prostate, is pleasurable. Prostate stimulation may even lead to an orgasm.[4] (see Prostate massage#As a sexual practice for more information).

Gender roles

According to Tristan Taormino, gender and gender roles play an important part in pegging.[2] Pegging reverses traditional cisgender heterosexual gender roles in sexual practices: the man is penetrated by the woman, becoming passive rather than active.[2]

Pegging is also about power: it reveals the power inherent in different roles and preconceived notions about who is and is not powerful. It takes the supposedly stable connection between gender and who gets to penetrate whom and exposes it as a lot more fluid than traditional heterosexuality would have us believe. (...) pegging dismantles the man-woman-penis-vagina foundation of heterosexual sex.

— Beckett & Miller (2022), foreword by Tristan Taormino

In popular culture

According to Beckett and Miller (2022), most popular representations of pegging are derogatory, negative or even amounting to sexual assault.[5]

Prior to the coinage of "pegging":

Various popular culture references since the coinage of "pegging":

  • Pegging was featured in the 2005 series of the UK comedy Peep Show (2005), in a scene where Jeremy (Robert Webb) is pegged by his then girlfriend Michelle (Shelley Blond).[11]
  • It was featured in the television show Weeds, during the episode "Crush Girl Love Panic" (2006).[6] Here, pegging appears to be non consensual and is played as a joke towards the male character being forced into anal sex.[5]
  • In the January 2007 pilot episode of Dirt, Lucy Spiller (Courteney Cox) blackmails Prince Tyreese (Rick Fox) with photographs of him being pegged by a prostitute.[6]
  • The September 2007 film YPF features a storyline in which a couple who feel their lovemaking has become boring over time, attempt to spice up their sex by trying pegging.[6]
  • As an author of sex guides and informational books on various sexual taboos, Violet Blue wrote and released The Adventurous Couple's Guide to Strap-On Sex in 2007.[12]
  • Tristan Taormino's Expert Guide to Anal Pleasure for Men (2009) is an adult instructional video for anal sex for men made by Tristan Taormino and released through Vivid Entertainment.[13]
  • The theatre company Pack of Others have an entire theatrical performance devoted to "spreading the word about the pleasures of prostate stimulation and strap-on sex".[14] The show has toured nationally and won Best Comedy at the 2008 San Francisco Fringe Festival.[15]
  • In Season 1, episode 1 of Shameless (2011), Frank introduces his neighbors Kevin and Veronica while a clip is shown of Veronica pegging Kevin.[16]
  • In the episode "Knockoffs" of TV series Broad City, Abbi Abrams pegs Jeremy Santos.[17] According to Beckett and Miller (2022), this is the most positive depiction of pegging in film.[5]
  • In the 2016 movie Deadpool, an R-rated pegging scene was enacted as part of a montage of sexual activity between Deadpool and his girlfriend Vanessa Carlysle.[18]
  • In the episode "To Peg Or Not To Peg" of TV Series The Bold Type, Kat pegs Cody.[19]
  • In episode 12 of TV series Vida Lyn pegs Rudy. In episode 20 it is referenced that she pegged Johhny.[20]
  • In the second episode of the second season of Bonding, Pete mentions pegging in his standup routine.
  • In the webcomic Ménage à 3 (2008—2019), one of the main characters, Gary, has a continuing relationship with a girl named Peggy, who likes to peg.[21]

See also



  • Beckett, Cooper S.; Miller, Lyndzi (2022-10-14). The Pegging Book: A Complete Guide to Anal Sex with a Strap-On Dildo. Thorntree Press LLC. ISBN 978-1-952125-22-5.


  1. ^ These three links chronicle how the term pegging came into usage.
  2. ^ a b c d e Beckett & Miller (2022), foreword by Tristan Taormino
  3. ^ a b c d e f Beckett & Miller (2022), "what is pegging?"
  4. ^ Levin, R. J. (January 2018). "Prostate-induced orgasms: A concise review illustrated with a highly relevant case study: Prostate-Induced Orgasms". Clinical Anatomy. 31 (1): 81–85. doi:10.1002/ca.23006. PMID 29265651. S2CID 36790429.
  5. ^ a b c Beckett & Miller (2022), "media representation of pegging"
  6. ^ a b c d e Nault, Curran (Summer 2010). "Bend Over Boyfriend to Take it Like a Man: pegging pornography and the queer representation of straight sex". Jump Cut (52). Archived from the original on March 3, 2016. Retrieved July 5, 2016.
  7. ^ Sade, Marquis (2010). La Philosophie dans le boudoir [Filozofija v budoarju ali Nemoralni učitelj] (in Slovenian). Ljubljana: Center za slovensko književnost. p. 110. ISBN 978-961-6789-14-1.
  8. ^ Philosophy in the Boudoir: Or, The Immoral Mentors. Penguin Classics. 2006. p. 74. ISBN 978-0143039013.
  9. ^ Sweet, Brian (2000). Steely Dan: Reelin' in the Years. Omnibus Press. p. 42. ISBN 978-0-7119-8279-6.
  10. ^ "Official Steely Dan FAQ". Archived from the original on January 27, 2012. Retrieved July 5, 2016.
  11. ^ "Peep Show – Episode Guide – Episode One: Mugging (11 November 2005)". Channel 4. Archived from the original on 16 December 2009. Retrieved July 5, 2016.
  12. ^ About The Book. Simon & Schuster. 21 June 2007. ISBN 9781573442787. Retrieved August 14, 2022.
  13. ^ Bridges, Ana J.; Sun, Chyng; Wosnitzer, Robert; Scharrer, Erica; Liberman, Rachael (September 2008). "A comparison of male and female directors in popular pornography: what happens when women are at the helm?". Psychology of Women Quarterly. 32 (3): 312–325. doi:10.1111/j.1471-6402.2008.00439.x. S2CID 143657655.
  14. ^ "Peg-Ass-Us". Pack of Others. Archived from the original on August 16, 2016. Retrieved July 5, 2016.
  15. ^ Jones, Chad (September 23, 2008). "Fringe felicitations: Best of winners, encores announced". Archived from the original on July 22, 2011. Retrieved July 5, 2016.
  16. ^ Shameless - Opening scene, retrieved 2022-10-07
  17. ^ Hope, Clover (February 5, 2015). "Last Night's Broad City Was All About Pegging". Jezebel. Archived from the original on July 16, 2016. Retrieved July 5, 2016.
  18. ^ Le Vine, Lauren (February 9, 2016). "We Need to Talk About the Pegging Scene in Deadpool". Refinery29. Archived from the original on July 7, 2016. Retrieved July 5, 2016.
  19. ^ Frey, Meaghan (2020-02-27). "The Bold Type Season 4 Episode 6 Review: To Peg or Not to Peg". TV Fanatic. Archived from the original on 2020-08-06. Retrieved 2020-05-26.
  20. ^ "Vida Season 2 Episode 6 Recap: Strap-On, Snitches, and Secrets". 21 June 2019. Archived from the original on 22 June 2020. Retrieved 22 June 2020.
  21. ^ "Pixie Trix Comix - Ménage à 3 - Bringing him chocolates". Archived from the original on 2021-06-07. Retrieved 2021-06-07.

Further reading

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