What is the 'knee thing'? TikTok's latest *steamy* term decoded

Wondering what the mysterious 'knee thing' is on TikTok? Let's just say it will make literally weak in them...

Picture of a women's legs as she lies on a bed with orange sheets/ in a pink template
(Image credit: Getty Images/Maria Maglionico / EyeEm)

Seeing videos of the 'knee thing' all over your FYP but have no idea what it means? Allow us to fill you in on this particularly steamy term—spoiler alert, it's pretty stimulating stuff...

Yes, it seems we've got yet another bedroom-related code word on our hands after the whole mascara trend saga. TikTok, while being our go-to for beauty and style trends (like the coastal cowgirl aesthetic), is also becoming a treasure trove of relationship and sex intel. Take the ever-so-popular speed bump sex position for example, or even the pillow trick.

That being said though, because of the app's strict guidelines, users have had to get pretty savvy with their coded sex terminology to be able to discuss such topics freely. So, for anyone baffled by the vague or jokey TikTok 'knee thing' explainers, allow us to fill you in on what exactly this move entails and how to try it yourself...

What is the 'knee thing' on TikTok?

So far, the 'knee thing' hashtag has over 19 million views to its name, with users singing its praises by insinuating that—like how the 'belly press' hand trick is said to take sex to the next level—the knee thing does the same, but for a make-out sesh or foreplay.

But what does the move entail? Well, as the name suggests it involves someone's knee positioned very intimately...


♬ original sound - Deanlm

♬ original sound - PrettyXBoi

Effectively, the 'knee thing' is where two people are making out—preferably horizontally (we'd recommend a bed, for comfort but the floor works too for you hardier folk). The person on top then moves their knee in between the other person's knees and uses it to press and rub against the other person's vulva, to stimulate the clitoris.

The 'knee thing's Urban Dictionary entry defines it as: "a makeout technique common between two vagina-having people, mainly when lying down or standing against something. In simplistic terms, one rubs their knee against the other's clit."

Or, to simplify it even further: "When a knee is pushed between someone's legs, up against their crotch (usually done to a girl), for the purpose of stimulation." 

Basically, it's a form of dry humping or someone's knee acting like a makeshift clit vibrator...

This is likely a move you've experienced a few times (or a lot of times) but never realized it had or really warranted a name. TikTok has now, it seems, dubbed it the knee thing and while it's not exactly the most illuminating or imaginative term in the world, once you know and your partner knows, you can request it to your heart's content—so that's something!

How do you do the 'knee thing'?

As mentioned, the 'knee thing' is perfect for a hot and heavy make-out sesh and is pretty straightforward. 

Clothing is optional for this move and you'll probably want to be lying on a bed or couch. Now, the person on top (or you can be side to side) then moves their knee between the other person's legs—gently, please don't just knee your unsuspecting makeout partner—and starts rubbing, to stimulate the vulva and clitoris. 

The tempo and pressure are down to personal preference but if you're looking to really spice things up you could introduce a bit of lube into the equation—if you've opted for the no-clothes option that is.

Naomi Jamieson
Lifestyle News Writer

Naomi is a Lifestyle News Writer with the Women's Lifestyle team and has recently earned her Gold Standard diploma in Journalism with the NCTJ. She has a background in design, having studied Illustration at Plymouth University but has taken a leap into the world of journalism after always having a passion for writing. She currently writes pieces on beauty, trends, fashion, and entertainment for GoodTo and My Imperfect Life. She also tests and reviews beauty and skincare products and tries out the latest TikTok hacks for My Imperfect Life.

Before working for Future Publishing’s Lifestyle News team, she worked in the Ad production team. Here she wrote and designed adverts on all sorts of things, which then went into print magazines across all genres. Now, when she isn’t writing articles on celebs, fashion trends, or the newest shows on Netflix, you can find her drinking copious cups of coffee, drawing and probably online shopping.