With sex coaching becoming a more widespread profession, many people are interested in finding out how to become a sex coach. There are diverse training and sex coach certification approaches out there and it can be difficult to know which one to engage with. While they may seem similar, there are actually some very significant differences in the philosophies, boundaries, training formats and certifications for each approach.

In order to decide which is right for you, we’ve included a thorough description of each of the training options.

Who is a Good Candidate for Sex Coach Training?

People from many different backgrounds can become sex coaches. Here are a few examples of good candiates:

  • If you have been informally helping your friends with their sexual issues.
  • If you have been a client and gone through your own transformation.
  • If you are a professional who works with individuals and couples around relationships and want to make yourself more effective or available to a wider clientele interested in sexuality.
  • If you are a licensed therapist who wants to learn more about sexuality, with the goal of  integrating sex education and coaching into your therapy practice.
  • If you are already working in a related field and want to expand your expertise to other modalities. For example, you might be a sexological bodyworker who wants to do more relational sex coaching, or you might be a talk sex coach who wants to have more experiential tools available to you and your clients.

Key Personality Traits of a Good Sex Coach

There are a few key personality traits that are helpful to know about if you’re considering to become a sex coach – including being:

  • Highly accepting and non-judgmental – Since shame is such a big part of why people get stuck around their sexuality, it is particularly helpful if you are a highly accepting and non-judgemental person. You will need to work with people from all different backgrounds who have a wide variety of desires and activities they want to participate in. You want to embrace the beautiful variety of desires with open arms.
  • Comfortable with emotions – Sex is a very sensitive topic and many people feel a lot of emotional pain as a result of sexual shame and trauma. If you are someone who people often come to for emotional support because you allow them to have all their feelings without trying to fix them, you may be a great candidate to become a sex coach. This is also a learnable skill, and a thorough sex coaching training will teach that.
  • Able to celebrate accomplishments – Clients are way more motivated when they know their efforts are is paying off. When you help your clients celebrate all they are doing right in their learning and growing process, you will be an excellent helper in their journey.
  • Good at listening – In order to be a great sex coach, you need to avoid feeling like your job is just to dish out advice, and make sure you know how to listen. So many people never have a chance to talk about sex with anyone. They may feel shy or uncertain, so you will need to gently coax them to talk about themselves and then listen deeply and fully.
  • A good detective of human nature – To get to the bottom of sexual issues, it is helpful if you are deeply interested in humans and what makes them tick. Since humans are very complex, especially in terms of emotions and sexual desires, being a student of humanity is a valuable skill to have as sex coach.

What to look for in a Sex Coach Certification Training

  • Well educated, knowledgeable, and experienced teachers – Anyone who is teaching sex coaching should have extensive training and experience in the field. Find out where your trainers were educated, and whether they have their own successful practices.
  • Supervision and feedback as you grow as a practitioner – Your training should offer additional organized opportunities for supervision or feedback after the certification. Learning to be a great sex coach is an ongoing process and you will need support in advancing.
  • A thorough sex coach certification process that requires you to demonstrate the skills you’ve learned – Being a good sex coach isn’t just about learning the information from a training, it is about being able to work well with clients. Any good sex coach certification process will require you to demonstrate the skills you have learned. Make sure the certification includes a session with a trainer or client so they can see your work.
  • Ongoing trainings – A competent training program will offer additional, advanced trainings. It will also have ways for you to retake the trainings by assisting in or being in a leadership role.
  • Support in starting your business – While the most important part of a respectable sex coach certification program is definitely an in-depth philosophy and tool set, it is also essential that you are able to find clients to work with. A comprehensive certification program will also give you entrepreneurial training and support you as you start your business.

What Kind of Sex Coach Do You Want to Be?

Once you’ve researched how to become a sex coach and you’re ready to get serious with training, there are two main pathways you can pursue: experiential sex coaching and talk-based sex coaching. You want to choose the one that fits best with your personality and boundaries.

Experiential Sex Coaching

Experiential sex coaching is one of the two avenues to becoming a sex coach and getting certified in. The underlying philosophy of experiential coaching is that people are much more likely to transform their lives by doing rather than just talking – especially in the realm of sex and relationships.

In experiential sex coaching, you not only talk with your clients about their goals and concerns, you also teach them by practicing with you hands on in the office. You can also offer homework so your clients have ways to incorporate the learned skills into their day-to-day lives.

Experiential sex coaches use a multitude of different modalities including breathwork, touch, practicing with real-time emotional communication, bodywork, practicing with attachment, sharing fantasies, teaching seduction techniques, practicing with dating, on so on.

The following modalities fall under the category of experiential sex coach trainings:

Somatica Sex Coach Certification

Philosophy: Somatica sex coaching was created to fill a huge gap in services between traditional talk coaching/therapy and bodywork/surrogacy. Somatica offers a space where you can grow and learn in a safe, boundary-conscious container. The Somatica Method is based on the belief that every person can live their individual dreams and have fulfilling and connected relationships. Somatica practitioners help their clients to eradicate shame in every area of their lives – but especially in the realm of sex and relationships.

The philosophy includes the idea that people thrive sexually when they are skilled in both physiological (sensual) and psychological (mental) arousal technique. A great sex life is based on knowing what kinds of feelings take you to the heights of your erotic potential.

Somatica is a highly relational practice where the coach and client engage in emotional and erotic practices in service of the client’s growth and learning. In Somatica sessions you will learn how to stay connected with yourself, while also connecting with your loved ones and sexual partner(s).

Boundaries: Somatica is a strictly clothes-on practice. The touch is two-way but never leads to orgasm.

The Somatica Core Training is a 6 month program which includes:

  • 20 days (160 hours) of in-person, intensive training over the course of 6 months. The 20 days are offered as four, 5-day modules.
  • Self-paced online study.
  • Marketing and starting your business training, with follow up seminars available.
  • An extensive reading list, including required and recommended reading offered throughout the training period (additional 40 hours).
  • One-on-one, small group, and larger group experiences.
  • Required live practice sessions between modules.

The modalities of Somatica include attunement, attachment, embodiment, inner child work, deshamifying, identifying and sharing needs, feelings, and boundaries. They also cover erotic skills including breathing, energetic connection, sensual touch, seduction including romance, passion, dominance and other sexual styles. It teaches you emotional communication – including repairing breaks in the relationship to deepen intimacy, coping to ways you are difficult in relationship, empathetic listening, and emotional communication.

To get the Somatica sex coach certification you will need to complete 100 hour of working with clients and 20 supervisions sessions and to pass the certification exam.

Advanced trainings on character strategy and working with couples are available.

Sexological Bodywork Training

Philosophy: Sexological bodyworkers often refer to themselves as sex educators as opposed to sex coaches. Its doctrine consists of the belief that people can have expansive experiences of physical pleasure in their bodies. Sexological bodywork is about an individual’s connection with themselves and their own body and pleasure and does not focus on emotional or erotic connection to others. Practitioners help their clients by reducing shame and teaching how to have deeper experiences of sense-based pleasure.

Boundaries: Touch is one-way or unidirectional from educator to student. The educator stays clothed at all times, while the client is sometimes naked. Gloves are used for pelvic and anal touch.

Sexological Bodywork training includes:

  • A nine-week home study course through videos and practices sessions. You then submit write-ups of your responses to those practice sessions.
  • A 14-day in-person embodiment intensive course.
  • A three month supervised practicum, where you practice 25 sessions under the guidance of a trained mentor.

The modalities of sexological bodywork training include breathwork, massage of the whole body including erogenous zone (also called Taoist bodywork), scar tissue remediation, and erotic forms of yoga and meditation (also called Orgasmic Yoga).

If you’d like to find out more about sexological bodywork training in the US, Spain, Switzerland, Germany, Canada, Brazil and Australia, you can find more information on the Sexological Bodywork Training website.

Certification in sexological bodywork is complete once you have finished the home study, in-person, and practicum requirements.

Talk-Based Sex Coaching

Talk-based sex coaching is the other pathway to becoming a sex coach. In talk-based sex coaching, the practitioner consults with you about your issues, listens to your feelings, and then offers ideas about how you might learn and practice new skills. Talk-based sex coaches use talking as their main modality, and also offer homework and practices you can do outside the office to continue with your growth.

Many talk-based sex coach trainings are conducted online. This means you will be doing most of your learning on a computer, with very little face-to-face interaction. While convenient, the biggest drawback to this method is that it’s very difficult to learn how to coach a person from an online training. Having vast knowledge about sex is one thing – but learning how to work directly with people is a whole different skill set that takes a lot of direction, supervision and practice.

Talk-based sex coach training may be best for you if you want to build a sex advice website, work with clients over your computer through conference-style sessions (Skype or Zoom), or if you are not comfortable with touch or other forms of intimacy with a client.

Other Professionals in the Field

There are many other professional coaches in the field of sex who call themselves by different names, including Intimacy Coaches, Love Coaches, and Somatic Sexologists.

Their modalities can differ vastly – if you are interested in finding out more, explore the links above.

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Celeste Hirschman
Celeste Hirschman, MA is the Co-Creator of the Somatica® Method and Co-Founder of Somatica® Institute. She trains coaches in the Somatica® Method of Sex and Relationship Coaching. She has her own private practice in San Francisco, where she works with clients to have profoundly pleasurable and fulfilling lives. She has co-authored multiple academic articles published in peer-reviewed journals and is the co-author of two books, Cockfidence - The Definitive Guide to Being the Man You Want to Be and Driving Women Wild and Making Love Real - The Intelligent Couples Guide to Lasting Intimacy and Passion. Celeste has her MA in Human Sexuality Studies from San Francisco State University (SFSU) and her BA in Women’s Studies from the University of California, Santa Cruz (UCSC). Celeste has taken the Hakomi Pro-Skills Training as well as multiple other trainings on sexuality and relationships. Celeste also has a Certification in Sexological Bodywork from the Institute for Advanced Study of Human Sexuality (IASHS).