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Davis, California

Tuesday, April 23, 2024

Love Lab’s safer sex materials now include bubble wrap and knee pads

Yeah, pregnancy is a big deal. But what if I scrape my elbow?


BY ANNABEL MARSHALL — almarshall@ucdavis.edu 


What’s the worst thing that could happen as a result of sex? Unwanted pregnancy? STIs? Emotional damage? What about jamming your finger?

Sixty percent of college students will injure themselves during sex, with 15% breaking bones and 7% losing teeth or nails. These figures are startling, and not just because I made them up.

Safer sex is possible and practical. Across Yolo County, California and the U.S., educators are making a conscious effort to promote safe sex. I visited a new Love Lab workshop, where Ava Gillian teaches the best practices for avoiding injury. Sixteen students sat at rapt attention. “Don’t bend it,” Gillian instructed, writing the words out on the whiteboard. “It’s not a toy.”

These workshops are part of a UC Davis initiative to reduce sex-related damage on campus. Attendees are invited to share their intercourse injuries: sprained ankles, accidental piercings, broken toes, dislocated shoulders, scalping, etc. 

“If you weren’t a contortionist before, you are not a contortionist once you take off your clothes,” Gillian reminded them.

The education is paired with resources for UC Davis students. Alongside condoms, dental dams and lube, students can also find knee and elbow pads, safety goggles, helmets, bubble wrap and more at the MU and Silo. Stickers promoting the project read “Safe is Sexy!” 

“My safe sex icon is Bob the Builder,” Aidan Brunette, a student at the workshop, said. “Because he always wears protective gear. We all know he pulls.”


Written by: Annabel Marshall — almarshall@ucdavis.edu 

Disclaimer: (This article is humor and/or satire, and its content is purely fictional. The story and the names of “sources” are fictionalized.)