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Erotic Restraint Play

9 October 2014 4 comments

"Malcolm – Laters Baby E.L. James X". Lying up on my sun-deck last Saturday afternoon I received a message from a friend of mine (Rob Godwin) who distributes the Fifty Shades of Grey of adult products in Australia. Rob supplies us with these products to sell at He'd had lunch earlier in London with Erika Leonard (pen name E.L. James and author of the 50 Shades of Grey trilogy) where she signed all three books for me with her now infamous line 'laters baby'. Given I enjoyed reading the books I'm quite thrilled to have autographed copies.

The books were such a boon for our retail sales that we're now strategizing how we can capitalise on the release of the movie in February.

Erotic Restraint PlayErotic Restraint Play

Whilst the sale of sex toys and orgasm balls skyrocketed in the months after 50 Shades of Grey was released, it was the huge increase in the sale of restraints and blindfolds that took staff, and in fact the adult industry worldwide, by surprise. It appears there are a lot of adults who are either into, or want to try, bondage and restraints (with or without discipline).

Did 50 Shades make the use of restraints more mainstream? Maybe the book gave 'normal people' the license to be a bit kinkier in the bedroom? Perhaps E.L. James has demonstrated that adults who like a bit of kink, like bondage and role play, aren't weirdos nor have they suffered from sexual abuse at some stage of their life (note there have been a number of studies over the years that confirm this). I believe the trilogy has helped normalise a type of behaviour that most people would have otherwise thought too freaky and kinky to even consider.

What actually qualifies as a restraint? The reality is that simply holding your partner down with your body weight, or physically grabbing their hands or arms, is a way of restraining them and it's fairly common during sex these days. Even penetrating your partner from behind, whilst pulling their hair, is a type of restraint that apparently is relatively 'vanilla' for a lot of couples. The next level up is restraints like a neck tie, silk scarf or fluffy handcuffs. Then at a more advanced level there are restraints like rope, chain, leather apparatus (ankle, wrist, arm, waist and neck), leg spreaders, ball gags, various types of masks and specific bondage tape. Note duct tape shouldn't be used as it adheres to the skin and hair. Removing it can cause bruising. Full body harnesses, often constructed from leather, are often used in extreme cases of restraint.

When restraining someone they may or may not be able to move around. For instance a man may have restrained his partner with fluffy handcuffs thus putting her at his perceived mercy. The realty is she's still able to move around to a certain degree. He might even do things to her that they otherwise mightn't consider (assuming she consents of course). Often someone is not just restrained but they're restrained to something like a bed. I'm envisioning them being spreadeagled and tied to a 4 poster bed or simply held down using restraints that go under the mattress.

So what else does someone get restrained to? It might be something like a Saint Andrews Cross, a chair, a rack, specifically made furniture (like what you'd see in a dungeon), a hook which is then winched upwards, a post, or whatever else the dominant person decides to use.

Why use restraints in the first place? Many adults often find it exciting and even liberating to hand over control (physical and/or emotional) to their partner. This power exchange and surrendering of control can awaken and heighten the sensations for both the 'sub' and the 'Dom' (sub is the term used for a submissive person and Dom for the dominant person – note the upper case D used when referring to a Dom). Restraining someone can also be extremely sexually arousing for either or both the sub and the Dom (normally both). Whilst applying restraints is often used as foreplay, and can be used as a form of titillation and teasing, it doesn't always lead to sex. Just seeing someone restrained can be very erotic!

What should participants do before going ahead with restraint play? Unless you know the other person really wants to do it, or fantasises about doing it, you should talk it through to determine acceptable boundaries before you begin. You should agree on a safe-word. In Germany many guests at BDSM 'parties' use the term Mayday as the safe-word. If you're new to experimenting with restraint play (with or without discipline or sex) then you should begin slowly to gain trust. Hiring out a fully equipped dungeon for your first experience may be quite confronting (although that could be quite exciting). Similarly unless you're very experienced then don't even consider what's known as edge-play. Edge-play includes activities such as breath-play (erotic asphyxiation). Note that whilst I like using restraints I personally would not consider edge-play due to not only the risks but the fact that it doesn't sexually excite me in any way.

As a beginner you may want to consider taking your partner to a professional Mistress or Master (ie. someone you generally pay by the hour). Usually the Mistress or Master wouldn't have sex with either of you but would teach you what you want to know about bondage or BDSM. The Mistress or Master would however often facilitate sex between you (the couple) whilst they watched or whilst they dished out some discipline (if asked for and required). I've visited Salon Kitty in Sydney a number of times in the past. Unfortunately it closed down last year. Salon Kitty had rooms set up as dungeons, specifically designed for BDSM, whereby Mistresses, Masters and sub's could be hired by the hour (with the room).

Types of RestraintsTypes of Restraints

So what happens next after a 'sub' has been restrained? Obviously there shouldn't be tears in their eyes (release them if there are). Instead there should be eagerness, anticipation, a little fear of the unknown (they're vulnerable and they know it), perhaps some abandonment of inhibitions and an abundant of lust (if the bondage is considered foreplay). If there is some role play (and there usually is) then either or both participants might be dressed accordingly. Leather, latex, rubber, stockings or other fantasy wear all come to mind. Often restraint is part of a sexual fantasy so after the restraints have been applied the foreplay and sex play begins. If the atmosphere is right then the experience can be exhilarating and sexually rewarding for all. Obviously trust between all participants is paramount!

Is there always discipline dished out to someone restrained? Whilst there can be, it isn't always. Why then discipline someone? The combination of pleasure and pain can be sensual and also very alluring. Some women like to have their ass playfully slapped or smacked in certain sexual positions (and some men like to do it). When a sub is restrained it's often their buttocks that are the focus of attention during disciplining (assuming there is some). Buttocks, because of their size and makeup, can accept a lot of punishment with little, if any, pain afterwards. In contrast nipples, or the outer vagina lips, can't. Buttocks are often struck with a hand, a leather paddle, a flogger, whip, cane or whatever. Obviously pain thresholds are predetermined to ensure boundaries are not crossed.

Nipple clamps and genital clamps might be used to further restrain and discipline a sub. Remember this is all part of role play and its fantasy, nothing more. Other tools and props may be used to heighten the sensations and sexually stimulate someone, like warm candle wax. Having candle wax dripped on genitals, nipples and other erogenous zones can be very arousing (note it can also inadvertently burn if it's too hot). Sex toys like vibrators, dongs, butt plugs, orgasm balls and clitoral stimulators are often used on someone restrained (watching a sub squirm in anticipation can be captivating). And having an assortment of sex toys and other props at hand ready to use on a sub can be very alluring and seductive especially given the sub usually doesn't get a say in what's being used and when. For a Dom the power they feel knowing that they can pleasure (or discipline or both) the sub as and how they want, is one of the reasons they get a high from the event.

Beginner's props include things like ice cubes, blindfolds, feather ticklers and warming oil.

Role play and living out sexual fantasies is a great way to ensure sex between couples doesn't become mundane and boring. I'm not saying that all couples should consider using restraints to keep their partner sexually interested, or to spice up their sex life, however I'm suggesting couples try to stay open minded and consider exploring new sexual avenues in an effort to keep the passion and lust alive in their relationship. If what you do is consensual and it's done on the basis that all parties enjoy it and no one is emotionally or physically hurt (a few red marks are usually acceptable), then I advocate it.

In 1997 I attended my very first Venus Fair in Berlin, Germany. The fair is where all major manufactures of sex toys, fetish and fantasy merchandise, lingerie, erotic art and porn from around the world meet to display their latest and greatest offerings to distributors and retailers. To say it was an eye opener was an understatement, particularly given that only two years earlier I was working as a civil engineer. Back in 1997 sex was allowed between exhibitors at the Venus Fair (usually within a booth). This I found rather exciting, however the displays of whippings and floggings of naked subs tied to Saint Andrews Crosses and various poles was quite confronting (as was seeing some naked subs crawling on all fours attached to a collar and lead being led by their Master). I spoke to a number of the subs after at the bar. They were all happy to report to me that it was a way of life for them. They had a Master who they obediently obeyed (out of fear of punishment). Similarly I spoke to two of the Dom's over dinner one night and for them it was also a way of life. Their sub lived with them and their Dom-sub relationship existed 24/7. At the time it was difficult for me to get my head around the concept.

On the same trip to Berlin I visited a couple of late night BDSM clubs. And I was amazed at how popular they were in Germany! They appeared to be frequented by 'normal' looking people. On the first night I was refused entry to a club as I wasn't dressed appropriately (it's totally subjective). I strode over to a sex shop that was close by and was soon dressed as a BDSM fetishist (I was able to leave my original clothes in a locker at the club). Inside the club everyone was dressed in fetish outfits. There was a lot leather, latex and nudity. And there were naked and semi dressed men and women that were chained or tied to posts, crosses and to metal loops, adorning many walls. Some were being disciplined whilst others just hung there for all to see. Wow this was definitely entertaining! There were rope tying displays and there was a women bent over naked with her head and arms in an old fashioned stock. It was locked so she couldn't move. She had a ball gag in her mouth and her hair pulled back behind her. Another woman (a Dom) was licking and kissing her red buttocks (red from her hand marks). I'd missed part of the entertainment which was a demonstration on how to smack buttocks correctly (in an upwards manner). I remember standing there slightly bewildered and in disbelief. This was a night club!

After the Berlin trip I flew back to Perth intrigued and eager to discover more about BDSM. I may have to write another more in-depth blog on the topic another time.

I've learnt over the year that one man's kink is another man's norm! And I try not to judge!

Delivering passion and pleasure.


Amy 10 October 2014 at 2:06 pm
Very exciting to read your latest post Mal. From someone who has actively explored her kink / submissive side for many years I find it well written and informative. I agree that it's good to spice things up so we don't get bored. The German clubs sound like an eye opener :)
anon 28 February 2015 at 4:19 pm
I would love to explore this side but I know my hubby would be happier being receiver than giver and therefore wouldn't be very satisfying for me :(
Naughtynnice 29 January 2017 at 3:11 pm
Mayybe try double ender anon that way you both can enjoy n stimulate at the same time
Naughtynnice 29 January 2017 at 3:48 pm
Maybe try somethng that stimutates you both at the same time anon that way you both enjoy the experience
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