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Flaccid Penis Size versus Erection
The "Great Equalizer" Exposed

The Great Equalizer
is one of the main themes used to comfort men who worry about their penis size after having seen bigger flaccid ones in the lockers of their health club. It is an expression invented by sex researchers Masters, Johnson and Kolodny (1986) in their book Sex and Human Loving to describe the fact that men with a smaller non-erect penis usually have a larger percentage volume increase during erection than men who have a larger flaccid penis.

Many doctors and sex experts use this cool sounding phrase in a misleading way by adding that although flaccid penises vary a lot in dimensions, erections are almost all the same. Even a well respected site as has this to say in its Male Genitalia Guide:

"smaller flaccid penises grow significantly more than larger flaccid penises so that when erect, both penis groups are essentially the same size. In other words, the volume of everybody's penis is similar; Longer penises are thinner, shorter penises are fatter."

Oh yeah? Although Masters and Johnson's statement is true, meaning that the smaller the flaccid penis, the greater the percentage of growth during erection, it doesn't mean that the resulting erections are as big as the ones starting with a large flaccid penis. Just look at the two examples below...


Comparison of percentage of growth in volume

Does anyone truly believe that these two penises
 will be practically the same size when erect?

This small flaccid penis will still be small when erect.

This big flaccid penis will be BIG when erect.

penis A:

flaccid length:  2 inch
flaccid width:   inch
flaccid volume: 0.9 cu inch

erect length:  5 inch
erect width:   1
erect volume: 8.8 cu inch

increase in volume: 1000% (10 X)

penis B:

flaccid length:  6 inch
flaccid width:   1 inch
flaccid volume: 11.4 cu inch

erect length:  8 inch
erect width:   2 inch
erect volume: 34 cu inch

increase in volume: 300% (3 X)

Pretend the guy with penis "A" tells a therapist
he is worried his penis is too small:

penis guy A: Doctor, I saw this guy with a huge flaccid penis. Now I am worried that mine is too small.

therapist: Why are you worried, your penis grows much more when becoming erect than the large flaccid penis. Yours grows TEN times larger, the other guy only grows three times larger. You should be happy and stop worrying about your size RIGHT NOW!

Of course he won't mention that even his erection is still smaller than the other guy's flaccid size...

...and the other guy's erection is almost four times bigger than his one...!

"Great" Equalizer...?



Comparison of percentage of growth in length

Examples of flaccid penis length versus erect length

  • Let's say that the average 2 inch long flaccid penis grows to an erection 5 inch long. That's a big 200% increase in length. Wow!
  • Now let's say that the average 5 inch long flaccid penis grows to a 7 inch erection. That's "only" a 150% increase in length. Poor them!?
  • And the guy with a 1" flaccid penis probably grows to a 3" long erection. That's a phenomenal 300% increase! What a lucky guy!

The above table shows the dramatic difference in size between a small and a large penis, whether flaccid or erected. Although proportionally the smaller penises grow a lot more, it is clear that this "advantage" is not sufficient to make the Great Equalizer theory a true "Equalizer".


For a great illustration of flaccid penis size versus erect size visit the Soft-Hard gallery at, a nice attempt to document the relationship between flaccid and erect penis size. 

Next: Women care about the size of the flaccid penis

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Penis Enlargement Opinion

Defeating Fear of Rejection

If penis size is not a big issue to you

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