Bondage Basics – Everything You Need To Know

Lately the popularity of the Fifty Shades of Grey movies has sparked a new interest in basic bondage. The movie (and books) dispelled some of the common misconceptions regarding bondage as being “painful” or a form of “rape.” Neither is further from the truth. Bondage in and of itself connotes any type of physical or mental restraining. In a sexual context, it refers to the consensual restraining of one’s partner via some sort of restraint (ropes, ties, ribbons, handcuffs etc.)

Misconceptions About BDSM

The key word here is CONSENSUAL. If you do not have consent from your partner to tie her/him, then this is not a legal activity. So, please make sure that you have Bondage Basicsyour partner’s consent before engaging in bondage activities.
It is important to note that bondage is an activity that can be used alone without any other connotations about Dominance or submission. While technically the person being tied would be submissive by his/her inability to move, this does not make that person a submissive. Confused? Let’s explain some very basic terms:

Bondage – The consensual physical restraining of another person to derive sexual pleasure.

BDSM – Often confused and used interchangeably, the concepts of BDSM are a bit more complex and connote a new realm of sexual play.

B= Bondage
D = Discipline. Think of this as spanking your partner for being “naughty” all the way up to a more extreme punishment such as orgasm denial. The more “Dominant” partner is the one dolling out the discipline.
S = Sadism. If you are a sadist you derive pleasure (sexual and general) from inflicting pain on another person. This pain can be as simple as a spank or as complex as almost torturous.
M=Masochism. Contrarily, if you are a masochist you derive pleasure (sexual and general) from having pain inflicted upon you.

Dominant – The Dominant (capital D) is the person “in charge” of the other person(s). He (Dom) or She (Domme) would be the one controlling the other person, using the restraints and dolling out the punishments. You do NOT have to engage in sadist or masochistic activity to be Dominant. For general purpose, the Dominant is the one in control.

Submissive – The submissive (lower case s) is the person who is under the control of the Dominant. He or she is the one being restrained or punished. She is often looked at as being “beneath” the Dominant, but this does not confer a slave mentality. There is another whole realm of sexual play that involves this deep submission. For the purposes here, a submissive is simply the person consenting to the restraining.

Safe Word – The ultimate idea behind bondage play is the exchange of pleasure. To ensure that both partners are feeling comfortable during the play, a safe word is used in order to stop play at any time if the submissive (or Dominant) feels they need to stop. A safe word should be something unusual. Never just “stop” as asking to stop or saying “don’t” can often be part of the play. Pick a word you would never say during sex, such as “evergreen.”

Couples Bondage Toys

Shibari – This is the Japanese practice of complex, but beautiful, rope bondage. This is an advanced type of play and anyone new to bondage may not have much success with it.

Ties – In bondage you need restraints. Any reference to “ties” can mean a literal tie, such as a necktie, or any other method of tying down.

Cuffs –  There are many types of “cuffs” and they can be used in any method of restraining.

Restraints  General term that can include the aforementioned (ties and cuffs) or refer to specifically made restraint systems that you can use to secure your “submissive” to a chair, bed, table or even suspended.

Spreader Bars – These nifty little restraining devices are often used in conjunction with other bondage equipment. They are most often used to “spread” the submissive’s legs apart via a bar equipped with ankle cuffs on either end. Spreader bars have a multitude of purposes and styles.

Bondage Rope –  Bondage rope is specially made to not rub or burn the person being restrained. If is often much softer and more pliable. If rope is your choice, make sure to invest in proper bondage rope.

Bondage Tape – Bondage tape is made for quick bondage situations or to use over areas where a rope or cuff may not work. Bondage tape is especially nice for areas like the breasts or between the legs (if there is no hair there of course).

Cock Cage – Sometimes a man is the submissive one, and there are special items to put his member into bondage. They are called cock cages and they slip over his penis.

Chastity Device – A chastity device is a particular form of female bondage where her “parts” are covered with a device that does not allow for penetration.

RACK – Risk-awareness Consensual Kink is a catch phrase used in more hard-core bondage circles. It basically states that both parties are consenting to the kinky play and are aware of the risks in such play.

SSC – Safe, Sane and Consensual is another catch phrase in the BDSM Community that infers that the playing partners are going to be “of sound mind” when they engage in certain activities and that all persons involved are consenting.

After play – After play is an important part of any bondage or BDSM play. It is that time after the play where the participants enjoy a relaxation period. This should include kissing, caressing and reassuring that the situation was pleasing to both partners. After play is important for the trust held within any type of situation involving bondage play.

There are many more terms that go alone with the concepts of sexual bondage, as well as a more in-depth discussion of what bondage actually IS. However, to understand bondage in its basic form, it is important to have a base vocabulary to build from. The most important thing to glean from this article is that bondage should ALWAYS be CONSENSUAL! Never attempt any of activities involving restraining without consent.

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