The more I experience…
…the less I know, it seems. Specifically, about implements.
The above photo contains but a mere sampling of what’s out there to use on a spanking bottom. I’ve probably felt them all at some point or another. You’d think after 20+ years, I’d be an expert on implements and how they feel. But, aside from some general knowledge, I remain woefully in the dark. Which doesn’t help my ass any.
This post was precipitated by my getting together with an old FetLife friend for coffee last week, someone I haven’t seen in seven years. We chatted it up for a couple of hours and of course the subject of implements came up. He showed me a picture on his phone of his “punishment paddle” and I immediately said that would be a hard limit for me.
I’ve often said I don’t like wood and I prefer leather. However, “wood” is ridiculously general — it doesn’t account for the myriad types, thicknesses, etc. All wooden implements are not created equal. All woods are not created equal. I have heard many times that some are lighter, some are dense, some are quite tolerable and others are practically unbearable. But damned if I know which is which.
I do know that thick, heavy frat-style wooden paddles are a hard limit. When I said nay to my friend’s photo, he asked why. I said it’s just pure pain to me, no pleasure whatsoever, and the pain is BAD. I can’t absorb the impact; it thuds me down to the bone. “Even if it’s lower on the butt? Maybe people are hitting you too high with it,” he suggested. Nope. Even if it’s on the fleshiest part of my sit spots, I feel this horrible, heavy thud deep within my sit bones, and it’s wretched. I’m a tad more willing about other wood, like lighter paddles, hairbrushes and spoons, but even those are hard for me to take. I will take them on video a lot more willingly than in a private scene that’s for mutual pleasure, because they really don’t pleasure me.
So, generally, one would think leather is the ticket for me, right? Not necessarily. Because all leather implements aren’t created equal either, damn them. Thickness comes into play again, as well as wear. A buttery soft, well worn flexible strap feels entirely different from a stiff brand new one. Straps can run the gamut from a sensual snap to sheer agony. And I can’t tell just from looking at them which it’s going to be. I have made godawful mistakes in choosing implements at parties before: sometimes the most innocent looking items can be utter torture. Conversely, sometime the items that look the meanest can be fairly innocuous.
I like leather implements in general. But one of the worst things I ever felt was a double razor strap. Yeah, it was flexible. It was also thick, very heavy and very thuddy. I have made many people laugh by saying it felt like being hit with a side of beef.
And speaking of flexibility — if the give of leather feels so much more acceptable to me, then wouldn’t it stand to reason that other materials with give would also work?
Again, not necessarily.
I recall a scene at a party, many years ago, when I was playing with a top I knew well, and I knew the feel of his implements. He had a strap I loved to hate, and he wielded it with precision and evil intent. After I’d played a prank on him, he put a blindfold on me and then proceeded to strap the bejesus out of me. From the start, it hurt like hell, like nothing I remembered. I screamed and squawked and fussed, and he laughed at me. “What’s wrong?” he taunted. “It’s just my strap! You’ve felt it before! What’s the matter, are you losing your tolerance?” I gritted my teeth and bore it, took all he gave, even though my mind was screaming, “What the hell is wrong with me? Why can’t I take this? Why is this hurting so much?? Aaaaaaaagh!” Perhaps I was having an off night? A really off night?
It wasn’t until the next day that I found out from his girlfriend that the strap was NOT leather — it was rubber. Hence the blindfold, so I couldn’t see it. Grrrrr. I was marked like crazy, too. Deep bruises.
So now rubber is pretty much a hard limit as well. Although I guess Delrin is a sort of rubber, or similar? I will take a Delrin cane, although they hurt like a bitch.
Even canes don’t all feel the same. If I say in a general statement that canes are OK to use on me, what am I letting myself in for? I’ve never experienced a Singapore-style cane, nor do I want to. But a proper rattan caning, with a thin whippy one, in the hands of someone who knows what they’re doing? Intense, but in the right head space, amazing.
I have felt everything, I think. From canes to belts to brushes to carpet beaters to tawses to crops to paddles to whips. I used to pride myself on what I could take. Nowadays, I find my desires changing. I still like to play hard… but only, ONLY if it’s someone whom I know is going to be measured, even, and careful. I no longer have any tolerance for stray shots–too high, too low, wrapping to the sides. I don’t like unevenness in cheekage. These days, I appreciate accurate and skilled players more than ever. The types I can trust with anything in their hands, no matter what it is, and know I’ll be safe and given just the right amount of pain. It’s a rarity, I’m afraid. Tops can be wonderful and kind and sensitive and skillful and many wonderful things, but still not adept with all the toys.
Perhaps now that I’m older, now that I’ve been doing this for a while, I don’t feel like I have to prove myself? (And to whom… to the scene, or to my own self?) I no longer have to show the world that I can get my ass beat all to hell with everything but the weed whacker. Or maybe I just don’t want that much pain and damage anymore? I really don’t know. But it does make me wish I understood the makings, the physics of implements better, so I could make the best choices for my play. Because, like everything else, I want quality over quantity.
But of course, there’s always hands. 🙂
Speaking of everything but the weed whacker — remember this?
Anyone else find they have been fooled by implements before? Or that something they used to like is no longer acceptable? Vice versa? Has anyone’s tolerance levels changed?
What a great pair of photos, especially the second one! Yes I think one’s taste in implements changes and so does the tolerance/sensitivity. I’d be surprised if it didn’t! Myself, I found that when I was younger (I’m 65 now) and more muscular I had more tolerance/less sensitivity than later. When I reached the age I wasn’t doing so much exercise and my bum started taking on a bit of fat, I found my love of caning became a bit more challenging. Generally I like stingy rather than thuddy. This change suggested to me that fat tissue is more sensitive than muscle tissue, maybe having more nerve endings. Anyway, though my sensitivity has increased my preferences have not varied much: the cane is still up there in no 1 spot for me. Tawse used to be in no 2 spot but I have started to become more interested in the feel of whips and less enamoured of the feel of leather straps and tawses. Recently I made a good imitation of a martinet and it feels really good. Then I bought some thin fibreglass rod and plaited narrow strips of kangaroo hide round it to make a very nice riding crop which feels really stimulating as well. So yes it has changed.
Trevor — you are a tough cookie, sounds like!
An authoritative reflection on Implements, How to Use Them, and How to Deal with Your bottom. Incomprehensible, to not be open on what one is doing.
Oh – and love your exhibition.
I pretty much agree with you, I dislike thuddy heavy implements whether they’re made of leather or wood. I haven’t really much experience with implements made of non-natural materials so I couldn’t comment on rubber or similar items. Weirdly although they are not heavy I have a strong dislike for wooden spoons which I have never been able to understand. In the end (sorry) I think I love the hand and the cane most of all but it’s the person wielding them that is the most important factor.
“Or that something they used to like is no longer acceptable? Vice versa? Has anyone’s tolerance levels changed?”
Great questions. From a spanker’s perspective, I find that my reactions have evolved. I did not lose interest in things I liked. I have gained interests in more specific details.
At first, I was fascinated by hand spanking. Then I was fascinated by the possibilities of various instruments and the reactions to them, without losing interest in hand spanking. Now I am much more sensitive to the details of submission to all of that. I don’t mean some cringing submission, but rather savoring the exact tone and style of how the bottom accepts it. You, Erica, are a fine example of what I mean by submission, because of the way you decide to accept it, despite your smart mouth and occasional encounters with an unexpected effect.
I think it developed as a better understanding of myself, a greater enjoyment of every detail.
MrJ — thing is, I’m not all that authoritative! Even with all the experience, there’s still so very much to know.
Simon — spoons provide a very concentrated sting, which is not for everyone. I like them because they have a domestic feel to them, like the hairbrush, and it’s pretty difficult to mis-aim with them.
Mark — great questions get great answers! Thank you. I have often called my submission “transition” — it takes some work to get to it, but it’s there.
I understand your meaning about your transition. That is a fine moment.
However, my taste actually savors even earlier than that, from the moment when a woman realizes a man is about to spank her, and decides.
She could accept that. “I’m about to be spanked, and I’m going to take it.”
She could instead call a safe word, or otherwise prevent it by words or actions to defend herself in a serious way from something she considers abusive or unacceptable.
There is no right to spank anyone without those thoughts of the bottom.
That moment is special, the realization it is coming and acceptance of it, just as is all of what comes until the transition you mention, and past that.
It is all wonderful. You may not even realize it at first, but it must be in your eyes and body language even so. Lovely.
It took a long time to fully understand that, and to fully enjoy it. Maybe I’m just slow.
I actually love sting and thud equally but I feel I tolerate thud better. With thud “The Hurt” takes longer to register even though it eventually leaves a few days lingering muscle soreness as opposed to stingy hand spankings, misc implements, etc.
It’s been well over a year since I had a quality spanking by a regular partner. The other day I did a brief but full force hand spanking and was surprised the next day while working out and breaking a sweat there was some sting and when I sat later there was deep muscle tenderness. During the “event” there was no stinging whatsoever like there is when I’m getting spanked by a partner. Strange and interesting outcome! LOL
A. — I’ve had a similar experience. Years ago, I had an intense OTK/hand scene with a guy (whose hand I assed, BTW). The next day, I was working out, and once I was warmed up, my butt suddenly felt like it had been attacked by a swarm of bees! Very bizarre.
Very timely article for me. Yesterday my long-time Top (and best friend) of the last 14 years said that in all the years he has been spanking me, my tolerance was the lowest it had ever been, by far, for no reason whatsoever. It surprised and disappointed both of us and we are both hoping it was a fluke thing. Not sure what might have caused such low tolerance/high pain.
Pam — how frustrating! Bodies are strange things and have weird, unexpected reactions sometimes. I hope it is indeed a fluke. When I had cycles, I found that my tolerance varied during those — but that’s no longer an issue.
Now this is a topic very close to my personal fantasies. I often find myself wandering around variety stores checking out the various potential implements disguised as ordinary household items. One of the most intense implements I have ever felt is a wire brush for grills. Make sure that you use the right side.
Despite all the various items I have collected the implement is not as important as my mood. My favorite lollipop paddle can be entirely too intense but with the right mood the sound produced is more real than any pain. It is my butt being whacked but all that smacking only produces an extra warm backside, that for me is very stimulating, the more serious the whacking the longer the feeling lasts.
Thanks for bringing it up
Emanuele — good point; mood can have a lot to do with how an implement feels. I have found that with some of my more intense toys, my tolerance for them varies.
Having only been in this for six years, I have my preferences for implements. My top uses several different woods and leather for our sessions. Each has a different feel for me. Sometimes I can guess what she is using just by how it feels. I don’t pay that much attention to what she has put out for me. Sometimes, I will request a particular implement. Lately, I wanted to find out what a crop felt like. The jury is still out on that one. Then there is a love/hate relationship with the Vermont hairbrush. I have varying tolerances for that thing.
I had given her my late husband’s belt and one time she decided to dig it out. It is in the line-up now, and sometimes I wonder why I ever gave it to her! That thing has a bite to it that is sharper than her straps; the London Tanner or the Tanner Reformatory.
I have been amazed at my tolerance. It does vary depending on how I am feeling any given time I see her. There was one time my tolerance was pretty low and I asked her to lighten up. Neither one of us knew what was going on, but there are just times I can take more.
I never thought I would ever take the cane. Then she used one on me when we were at BBW. It was an otk cane and I knew she was using that and she did it with such finesse that it actually felt good. Of course, it was a light caning so that made a big difference. That said, I have been able to take the cane, and various canes, fairly well now. Typically toward the end of the session. One thing she did that has become something incorporated into the routine is the use of two otk canes used as if on a drum. LOL The first time she did it, I liked it so she does it now.
One time she brought out her double-tail. What the—! Never thought I would like something like that, but I do.
I have hard limits. One is rubber. Another is Delrin.
One thing I think we tend to not recognize is any implement can be used to feel good or to be tortuous. It is all in how it is used and applied. Any implement can become deadly in the hands of the wrong person. Thus, the top must be a trusted one and be very good at what they do. I am thankful I have one of the best.
Bobbie Jo — yes, your tolerance is impressive. It sounds like you take a lot more than I do, these days. But you do have a skilled top you trust, so that ups tolerance a great deal, as I’ve discovered myself.
It does sound, Erica, like you can’t tolerate much “thud” as it is experienced by the sub, which translates into the weight of the implement. Density is important primarily because denser implements have more weight per unit volume by definition. The practical side of all this is that it seems you are better off with implements that are light in weight, and if denser implements are used they must be kept very thin.
High density materials would be metal, rubber, and the synthetics nylon, delrin, and lexan. I personally don’t use metal or rubber on my subs and keep all synthetics down to 1/4 inch maximum thickness.
Probably most people are not interested in the physics of all this, but I have made a thorough study of paddles and how momentum and kinetic energy vary with their weight and thickness. I believe the problem for you and others from the heavier implements is too much momentum relative to the amount of kinetic energy. My theory is that with less momentum, the paddle’s KE gets dissipated at the surface of the target area (felt by the sub as “sting”), but with greater momentum the KE can’t be dissipated at the surface and the deeper tissues are too much affected.
Web — this is fascinating! I know zip about physics (that’s John’s area of expertise), but I like knowing an explanation of why things feel the way they do. Thanks for taking the time!