The jelq is the backbone of every penis enlargement exercise program. If your goal is to improve the size and hardness of your penis, the jelq is a proper beginner’s exercise. The good news is jelqing is a penis stretching technique that requires no equipment. Learn how to jelq, its benefits, and how to do it safely.
NOTE: The video below is an instructional video on how to do the basic jelq. It includes frontal nudity and may not be suitable for all audiences. Please consider this, before clicking play.
Scroll down to learn more about the jelq:
- What is Jelqing?
- How to jelq? A Basic Guide
- Jelq Variations
- Does jelqing really work?
- FAQs: How does jelqing increase my penis size and hardness?
- Jelqing Pros and Cons
- The Bottom Line
Written by Rob Michaels
How to Jelq
What is the Jelq
- Jelqing is a penis-enlargement exercise – By using jelqing exercise routines, men have added significantly to their penis length and girth. Jelqs are typically done for 5–20 minutes a day, 2–5 days a week.
- Jelqing uses a ‘milking’ like motion – It’s an ancient Arabic technique where the hands pull on the penis causing it to lengthen. The term jelq translates to ‘milking,’ with the exercise closely resembling the act of milking cattle.
- According to the book Penile Augmentation – Dr. Won Whe Kim described jelqing as the “technique of stroking the penis to erection from base to top, but stopping short of ejaculation,” and repeating the process again and again.
- Jelqing is a safe male enhancement exercise when performed correctly – With proper warm up, technique, and adequate rest days, it is completely safe. Just make sure to avoid over training. This can help you reach your penis enlargement goals, as well as improve erection hardness.
How to Get Started Jelqing
Basic jelqing involves penis massaging techniques done in a simple fluid motion. *Note: Do not start jelqing until you read all of the important jelqing FAQs, cautions, and tips below.
How to Jelq – Step-by-Step:
- LUBRICATE – Before you start, lubricate your penis with baby oil, Vaseline, or another specially formulated lubricant.
- ERECTION LEVEL – Do not jelq with a full erection. Penile exercising with 100 percent erection level is dangerous if you’re not trained well yet. Bring your erection level to 50–75 percent by slightly stroking your penis. Your penis should be relaxed enough to push blood through its smooth muscles during the exercise.
- OK-GRIP – Use your thumb and main pointer finger to form an OK-grip, as shown in the accompanying photos.
- START AT BASE – Place the grip around the base of your penis, as close to your pubic bone as you can.
- MOVE UP – While maintaining light pressure on the grip, slowly move your grip towards the tip of your penis. The ideal jelqing pressure is one that does not hurt, but effectively pushes blood up the penis.
- STOP BEFORE GLANS – Stop the grip directly before it reaches your glans. This completes one jelq. Each jelq should take approximately 2-3 seconds. .
- REPEAT – Once you’re done with one jelq, take your other hand and repeat the process.
The Pros and Cons of Jelqing
- No equipment is needed for this form of penile enhancement.
- According to Healthline, jelqing and other penile exercises can help you feel comfortable about your body and better understand your erection.
- There’s numerous anecdotal evidence online of men sharing jelqing’s benefits.
- Although not widely accepted by the medical community, some medical professionals attest to its effectiveness.
- Must be done several minutes a day, at least 5 times a week; takes dedication to stick to a consistent routine.
- Results take time – It may take weeks to several months or even years to see results.
- Can have unpleasant side-effects like bruising or injury when not done correctly.
- Very few studies have been done to prove its effectiveness.
What is a Good Basic Jelqing Penis Enlargement Routine?
The following is a basic jelq routine ideal for beginners who want to try a penis enlargement exercise. If you’re looking for more advanced exercises, check out our Jelqing Exercise Table of Contents for a variety of jelq routines with increased intensity.
Do the following routine 2 to 3 times a week to start. Shoot for every other day at first, then advance toward 5 days on, 2 days off.
*Don’t exceed more than 5 days straight.
Your body needs to rest, to allow it to create the new cells for growth.
And, don’t try to progress too quickly.
Rushing the intensity and/or number of days you jelq can lead to injury.
|5 minutes||Warm Up|
|5 minutes||Penis Stretches|
|10 minutes||Basic Jelq|
|5 minutes||Warm Down|
Does Jelqing Really Work?
A question we often get asked is:
“Does jelqing actually work? Does the jelq really enlarge the penis?”
The answer is:
Yes. Jelqing works for penis enlargement.
Though medical institutions have not devoted much research on studying the effectiveness of jelqing, a number of certified professionals have, including Dr. Richard Howard II.
In my interview with Dr. Howard, he says, “Penile exercising is part of wholeness and integrity of the individual. There seems to be a need in human nature to partition things or have either or, but in my view you can integrate it all – like in the principle of bodybuilding – which should logically include PE.”
Please note that the following results are just what men reported. Like most surveys, there can be an error in what was stated and what actually occurred.
As mentioned, regretfully, there have been very few scientific studies on the effectiveness of jelqing. It’s not surprising, medical studies are expensive and there’s little money to be made if a study proves that jelqing is an effective means of penis enlargement.
However, one study was done by an English doctor in the 1970s. In the book Penis Enlargement Methods—Fact & Phallusy, Gary Griffin discusses the ‘Chartham Study’ by Dr. Brian Richards, published in the British Journal of Sexual Medicine.
In the Chartham Study, they got 30 male participants who did various penile exercises together with a vacuum pump over the course of three months. By the end of the research, two men dropped out and 28 men experienced ‘permanent and verifiable penile enlargement.’ The results showed:
More recently, another jelqing study was conducted by Dr. Jeff Ferrara, MD. Eight participants were trained in jelqing and supervised measurements were taken each week. After 3 months, the results showed:
- Average length increase: 0.13 inches
- Average girth increase: 0.30 inches
You can read more about Dr. Ferrara’s jelqing study here.
Stronger Erections: Body Cue That Means It’s Working
When you start experiencing stronger erections, that’s a very good sign.
Like all exercise, the penis gets bigger and harder by adapting to the stress of the jelqing exercise. To keep the growth, you’ll have to gradually increase the intensity overtime.
Not sure if you’re ready to advance your routine? Here are ‘body cues’ you should watch out for:
- If your erections are improving, keep gradually increasing your routine with more sets and advanced techniques.
- If your erections are plateauing or getting worse, slow down and decrease your frequency. Remember to pay attention to this body cue.
What’s The Right Erection Level to Start Jelqing?
Start jelqing with a 50 – 75 percent erection level. These erection percentages are just approximations to guide men on the right hardness level. To give you a more visual idea, check this Erection Hardness Scale we made based on the European Association of Urology.
- As per the per the EAU Erection Hardness Scale, jelqing should be done between a Level 2 (peeled banana) and Level 3 (unpeeled banana).
- The point is to avoid full erections when you start jelqing, until you build up to it.
When I Jelq, Why Can’t I Start with a Full Erection?
You don’t go to the gym the first day and start by lifting 300 lbs, do you? It’s the same principle for jelqing. Doing this exercise with a full erection can lead to injury especially for beginners. So start slow and gradually build your routine.
How Do I Warm Up or Warm Down when Jelqing?
Again, let’s use the bodybuilding analogy. Warming up before you exercise and cooling down afterward both help you prevent injury and ensure you get the most from your workout. The same is true for penis exercises like jelqing. Five to 10 minutes before you jelq, warm up your penis, to get it loose and ready for more strenuous exercise.
Here are some great ways to warm up before your jelqing routine:
- Wrap a warm hand towel or washcloth around your penis
- Take a hot shower
- Use a heating pad
- Use a warmed up rice-filled sock
- Use a penis pump – Can be used as a warm up device 5-10 minutes before jelqing
Using Penis Extenders
Many men use penis extenders to enhance their routine. Although it’s not part of jelqing, it can help you achieve optimum enlargement goals. Extenders can be used several hours a day and can be worn daily under normal clothing, as well as at night during sleep.
In fact, a study published by Dr. Paolo Gontero in the British Journal of Urology International tested penis extenders as a tool to help treat ‘short penis.’ By the end of six months, results showed 2.3 cm increase in flaccid length, and 1.7 cm in erect length. This is one of several studies that show scientific evidence on the effectiveness of penile stretching methods.
What Lubricant Should I Use to Jelq?
Lubricants can help you get the most from your jelqing routine by reducing friction. There are a variety of lubricants on the market as you’ll see in the chart below.
However, never use shampoo or body soap as a lubricant.
The scents can become an irritant to the delicate skin of the penis.
To read a full review on lubricants, go to our article on Personal Lubricants: The Best and the Worst Lubricants for Penis Exercises.
What is Dry Jelqing?
The Dry Jelq, or jelqing without lube, may cause some chafing, but it’s easy to do in discrete places like the shower and requires less clean-up time. The process for dry jelqing is the same as the basic jelq. Other men prefer this because it doesn’t require them to cleanup any lubrication.
Dry Jelq Tip:
Try using a lighter grip than when you jelq without lube.
This helps prevent chafing when you dry jelq.
Take note: Applying lubricant reduces friction while doing a jelq routine. This is why ‘dry jelqing,’ or doing the exercise without lube, is generally not recommended especially for beginners. Like I mentioned earlier, dry jelqing may irritate the delicate skin of the penis.
Proper Jelqing Tips
The Right Jelqing Angle
The angle you use to jelq depends on which part of the penis you want to stretch. Jelqing at a downward angle to stretch the ligaments will help increase length. You can also use a particular angle to concentrate on the part of the penis you want to stretch.
According to Dr. Richard Howard, exercising the penis in all directions – down, up, left, and right – helps distribute blood flow thoroughly to help encourage penile growth.
Jelqing Stroke Time
Start by jelqing at a rate of about 3 seconds per stroke. As you advance, you increase the stroke time to between 5 and 10 seconds, for a more intense jelq. You can also change it up by doing quick jelqs of 1 to 2 seconds per stroke to vary the exercise intensity.
Change Up the Grip
To ensure you’ve evenly jelqed the entire circumference of your penis, don’t be afraid to change the positioning of your OK-grip.
- Change from the standard, palm up grip, to the overhand OK-grip, with your palm down.
- Or rotate the grip slightly to the left and right throughout your session.
Avoid Over and Under Training
Over training can lead to injury. Think about it. If you just started running and had only a few runs under your belt, chances are you’d be incredibly sore if you run 15 miles. Or worse, you could really do damage to your body.
The same is true with over training with penis exercises. It’s not worth an injury from a too intense or too long session. You can also over train by not taking sufficient rest days.
Under training is also an issue. Under training comes from doing the same routine day-after-day, not using the right intensity or not performing the exercise consistently.
There are several variations you can try to maximize your gains.
NOTE: The videos below are instructional video on how to do jelqs. These include frontal nudity and may not be suitable for all audiences. Please consider this before clicking play
- Side Jelq – This is commonly done to correct a penis curve. Jelq against the curve at a slightly higher erection level. Side jelqs are also great girth builders. You can learn more about Side Jelqs here.
- V-Jelq – The V-jelq puts pressure on the sides of the penis shaft. It’s called a “V-jelq” because you make a V with your index and middle finger. Use your palm facing up and jelq with the V grip upward. You can learn more information about V-Jelqs here.
- One-Handed Jelq – As the name suggests, you only use one hand with the one-handed jelq. It’s also done with more intensity by advanced jelqers. You can learn more about One-Handed Jelqs here.
- Mini-Jelqs – This jelq variation is also done to help treat a penis curve. Mini-Jelqs are performed on the weaker side of the penis to help stimulate blood flow, which also helps correct penis curve You can learn more about Mini Jelqs here.
- Horse Squeeze – The Horse Squeeze is a more intense girth exercise suited for men who are used to more advanced routines. Do not try this penis exercise unless you’ve mastered the basic routine. You can learn more about the Horse Squeeze here.
Why is Penis Size Important?
According to History and Cultural Perspective by Dr. Won Whe Kim in Penile Augmentation, the penis has defined masculinity and power throughout history. All over the world, the penis has been a symbol of a man’s ego. Its length, girth, and function has been an important issue since ancient times.
Men’s penises come in a wide variety of shapes and sizes, and even today, a larger manhood is still a sign of social status, power, masculinity, stamina, and fertility.
Knowing this, we shouldn’t be surprised when studies show most men are unsatisfied with their size and want a bigger penis, as shown by research in the Psychology of Men and Masculinity. In the same research, studies reveal penis size is linked to general physical attractiveness and satisfaction with one’s body and facial appearance. Another study in the International Journal of Impotency Research shows many men still want penile enhancement surgery even if they have normal sized penises.
However, even if most men are not satisfied with their size, Dr. Lever’s research reported 84% of women are actually satisfied with their partner’s penile size. Moreover, similar findings have been reported in the Archives of Sexual Behavior, showing how penis size is not as important to women. Despite this fact, men are still likely to seek methods of penile enhancement.
While researchers have tried to know the average penis size for different groups of men, there are still few studies that tell us how penis size really affects a person’s sense of satisfaction.
How does jelqing work?
Jelqing works by forcing blood through the penis, which is made of approximately of 50 percent smooth muscle. This force increases the internal pressure in the smooth muscle and other tissues, which stretches the skin and creates “micro-tears” in the tissue. The tissues may appear engorged as they heal, making the penis look longer.
Just like building muscle in any other part of your body, through this controlled damage and rebuilding, the smooth muscle grows. With the penis, this results in increased length and girth.
To further understand how jelqing works, let’s take a closer look into muscles. There are three types of muscle: cardiac muscle, which is the heart; skeletal muscle, which are muscles we typically exercise; and smooth muscle found in organs and blood vessels.
Though these three types of muscles are different, they’re all composed of proteins crucial for muscle function.
Moreover, skeletal muscle and smooth muscle grow when placed under stress, such as exercise. Another study also showed that injecting skeletal muscle cells into the smooth muscles of the penis improved hardness and erection strength, illustrating how much the two muscles are alike.
“The proper functioning of the smooth muscle is necessary for the normal erection process,” says Dr. Michael DiSanto of the University of Pennsylvania. In short, smooth muscle is just as important to your penis as cardiac muscle is to your heart.
However, not all men have the same amount of smooth muscles in their penis. Some men have penises with more than 50 percent smooth muscle, while others may have less than 30 percent. This difference is the primary reason why other men cannot achieve strong erections.
According to Dr. Eric Wespes who published his findings in the International Journal of Impotence Research, “The amount of smooth muscle in the penis is the essential factor that determines a man’s ability to achieve normal erections.”
Dr. Wespes’ study shows that men under forty-one had an average of 46 percent smooth muscle in their penis; men between forty-one and sixty had 40 percent; and those older than sixty had 35 percent. Older men have weaker erections and their penis often shrinks in size, which is primarily caused by decrease in penis smooth muscle.
How long will it take to see results from jelqing?
Everyone is different, so how long it takes you to see results depends not only on the effort you put into your jelqing routine, but also your own unique physiology. Some PEGym.com members have reported seeing flaccid results in just a couple of weeks, while others report measurable results in four months, some even years.
However, based on PEGym’s survey of 1,000 men:
The average time it takes to see the earliest results is between 2 to 4 months.
Just keep in mind penis enhancement, like any exercise, takes time. And your own progress will vary from others.
Are jelqing results permanent?
The good news? Penis enlargement results from jelqing, when done right, are permanent. Through jelqing, you’ve created that new tissue, and it’s yours to keep and enjoy.
There may be reports that say jelqing must be done continuously in order to maintain any gains. While it’s true there are men who lose their gains once they stop–
Proper penile exercises and cementing routines often yield permanent results.
To help make penile exercise gains permanent, you need to do a cementing routine that gradually weans you out of the exercise instead of quitting suddenly.
Moreover, every time you get an erection, you’re getting light penis exercise, which actually helps you maintain your gains. So make sure to do proper exercises and a cementing routine – it’s a muscle. You use it, or lose it.
Is Jelqing Safe?
If you follow basic precautions, like warming up before you begin to jelq, listening to your body cues, and avoiding over training, then jelqing is completely safe.
As with any exercise, you may experience some less than desirable side effects if you jelq incorrectly, skip warm ups or over train by doing too many reps too quickly before your body is ready. In fact, a study published in the Translational Andrology and Urology noted reports of bruising, pain and fibrosis after improper jelqing (fibrosis is the thickening and scarring of connective tissue due to injury).
When not done properly, some of these side effects may include:
- The Baseball Bat Effect
- The Donut Effect
- Red Spots or Discoloration
The Baseball Bat Effect
With the Baseball Bat Effect, the penis begins to look like a bat, with the head becoming the biggest part of the penis. The best thing you can do to prevent the Baseball Bat Effect is to jelq properly.
Also, when you jelq, make sure you are jelqing your entire penis – not just the upper part of the shaft. Start at the very base of your pubic bone and stop directly before the head.
The Doughnut Effect
The doughnut effect can happen after long or intense jelqing sessions. During this time, fluid is pushed toward the glans, collecting in a ring just below the glans, looking like a doughnut.
For uncircumcised men, this usually results in the foreskin swelling. In both cases, the swelling is only temporary and will go away after a few hours.
Red Spots or Discoloration
One of the most common side effects of jelqing are reddish spots or dots appearing on the penis. These spots are the result of tiny burst capillaries, but they usually go away within 24 to 48 hours. However, this is also a sign you were not properly warmed up before jelqing or built up intensity too quickly. When this happens:
Get some rest, then jelq again when it’s gone.
Take it easy next time.
The Bottom Line
Many men have made penis enlargement and increased sexual health a goal. From all the options available, penis exercises, like the jelq, is one effective way to reach those goals.
Remember: There is no magic fix to instantly show gains.
Although there may be little research on jelqing as a penis enlargement method, it wouldn’t hurt to learn how to do proper penile enlargement exercises. Any man would be pleased with the possibility of achieving greater gains. This technique can also help you feel more comfortable and confident about your body.
If you dedicate yourself to jelqing and penis exercise education, safe and successful results can be achieved.
 Wylie, K. R. & Eardley, I. Penile size and the ‘small penis syndrome’. British Journal of Urology International. 99, (2007). pp. 1449–1455.
 Woods, S. G. “Sex.” Esquire 141.6 (2004): 84. Academic Search Complete. Web. 14 Nov. 2018.
 Park, N. C., Kim, S. W., & Moon, D. G. History and Cultural Perspective. “Penile Augmentation.” Springer. 2016.
 Jewell, T., Wilson, D.R. “Does Penis Stretching Work? Penis Stretching: 5 Exercises for Length and Girth.” Healthline. 13 Apr. 2018. Web. 14 Nov. 2018.
 Michaels, R. “Interview with Doctor Howard.” My Penis Doctor. Web. 14 Nov. 2018.
 Michaels, R. “Penis Exercises: A Healthy Book for Enlargement, Enhancement, Hardness, & Health.” Semprove, Inc. (2013).
 Griffin, G. “Penis Enlargement Methods—Fact & Phallusy.” Palm Springs: Added Dimensions, 1996.
 Ferrara, J. “Does Jelqing Work? Jelqing Results from a 3 Month, 7 Male Subject Study.” PhalloGauge. Web. 9 Aug 2018.
 Mayor, S. “Erection Hardness Scale Proves Effective In Assessing Erection Quality.” Medical News Today. 28 Mar. 2008 Web. 14 Nov 2018.
 Gontero, P. et al. A pilot phase-II prospective study to test the ‘efficacy’ and tolerability of a penile-extender device in the treatment of ‘short penis’. BJU Int. 103, 793–797 (2009)
 Bogaert AF, Hershberger S. “The relation between sexual orientation and penile size.” Archives of Sex Behavior. 1999;28:213–221.
 Lever J, Frederick DA, Peplau LA. “Does size matter? Men’s and women’s views on penis size across the lifespan.” Psychology of Men and Masculinity. 2006;7:129–143.
 Mondaini N, Ponchietti R, Gontero P, Muir GH, Natali A, Caldarera E, et al. “Penile length is normal in most men seeking penile lengthening procedures.” International Journal of Impotency Research. 2002;14:283–286.
 Stulhofer A. “How (un)important is penis size for women with heterosexual experience?” Archives of Sexual Behavior. 2006;35:5–6.
 Seidel, C.L., and N. W. Weisbrodt. “Hypertrophic Response in Smooth Muscle.” Boca Raton: CRC Press, 1987.
 Kim, Y., et al. “Injection of Skeletal Muscle-Derived Cells into the Penis Improves Erectile Function.” International Journal of Impotence Research. Vol. 18 (2006), pp. 329-324.
 DiSanto, M. E. “Corpus Cavernosum Smooth Muscle Physiology: A Role for Sex Hormones?” The Canadian Journal of Chemical Engineering, Wiley-Blackwell, 2 Jan. 2013.
 Wespes, E. “Smooth Muscle Pathology and Erectile Dysfunction.” International Journal of Impotence Research. Vol. 14 (2002), pp. 17-21.
 Reacher, J. “Can This Ancient Arabic Procedure Make Your Penis Bigger?” Prostate.net. Web. 9 May 2018.
 Lee, J. K., Tan, R. B., & Chung, E. “Erectile dysfunction treatment and traditional medicine—can East and West medicine coexist?” Translational Andrology and Urology, 6(1). (2017) pp. 91-100.
About Rob Michaels
Rob Michaels is the founder of PEGym.com and the author of the bestselling book, Penis Exercises: A Healthy Book for Enlargement, Enhancement, Hardness, & Health.
Rob Michaels has been featured in numerous media platforms, including Men’s Health, GQ Magazine, and Salon.com, among others. As a male enhancement expert, he has spent more than a decade researching different male enhancement techniques and reviewing products that men can use safely. He continually strives to develop effective programs that will help men gain confidence and a healthy sexuality by achieving their male enhancement goals.