BDSM (typically, ‘Bondage, Discipline, Sadism and Masochism’) covers a wide range of kink and fetish sexual activities: from spanking to breath control, role-playing and torture, and much more.

Why We Do It

BDSM takes the dynamic of sex to different levels, tapping into our deepest fantasies and challenging long-held taboos. There’s something incredibly primal about having your hands tied to the frame of a bed or workbench, the weight of your partner bearing down on you, giving yourself to, or being in complete control over someone.

Some of us get off on exercising complete control over another person, degrading them in front of others and letting them know they are our property.

BDSM covers a range of kinks: whether it’s spanking you’re into, electro, bondage, or CBT. What unites us is the desire to push our own boundaries as consenting adults and reach new sexual highs. Pain can be orgasmic, and the power exchange can escalate and embolden the bond of trust between guys.

The Nuts and Bolts of It

Whether you’re the active/dominant/top and you enjoy asserting control, or you’re the passive/submissive/bottom and you enjoy being dominated, or you’re versatile/switch, BDSM pushes the boundaries of conventional sex and relationships for consenting adults, blurring the line between pleasure and pain.

There’s a huge world of kink, here are some of the more popular practices:


Bondage involves any form of consensual restraining, tying, binding or restricting of a partner during sex, or for erotic or aesthetic pleasure.

For the sub, the desire can be to feel the constraints binding tightly around your skin. It can be about the feeling of complete helplessness and dependence on other people, the degradation or adulation of being used as a sex object.

For the top, bondage can be an art form, with meticulous attention given to the knots tied. Dominating a guy bound up for you might be the ultimate in worship and control, and bondage can often lead to other Sub/Dom activities like CP, electro, or torture.

Mummification is tightly wrapping someone’s entire body in bindings, a sack, straight jacket, cling film or similar, allowing just a hole for them to breath. Sometimes hands are cuffed, sometimes legs are bound, sometimes a person is hogtied, frog-tied, or strapped to a bench/cross; there are no real rules to bondage or what is used to bind someone, only what is negotiated by the guys beforehand.

Corporal Punishment

CP is getting pleasure from receiving or inflicting pain on another guy, usually by striking with hands or various objects, like paddles and canes. Often, the bottom is bound and/or gagged and subjected to verbal humiliation as well as being spanked. CP can trigger memories/fantasies of strict teachers or military life , which builds into the role play scenarios played out. For the masochist, being ‘forced’ to bear flesh whilst being tied up and verbally and physically beaten is the ultimate in humiliation.

The excitement of the sudden sting of the cane or whip is combined with the anticipation of the next strike, the drama of the situation, and pushing the boundaries of how much pain you can take. Endorphins are released by your body and pain mixes with pleasure, the mind can travel to a heady dream state often called “Sub Space”.

For the Top/Sadist, it is all about control: the intoxication of the powerful position you’re in, releasing your aggression on a slave that is begging you to beat them. A good Dom/Sub relationship will be founded by strong bonds of trust and respect that grow stronger as a result of play.

Breathe Control

BC is the practice of restricting your own, or another guy’s ability to breath during sex. The lack of oxygen can make you light headed and can heighten the suspense and feeling of an orgasm. A common practice in domination/submission play, choking someone can be seen as the ultimate in power dynamics: you’re quite literally putting your life in someone else’s hands.

It’s common for rope, cling film, collars, gas masks, hoods, and bare hands to be used. Rebreathing is restricting oxygen by two partners breathing the same air back and forth, either by locking lips, or through a device chamber, increasing the amount of carbon dioxide inhaled and making you light headed.

Cock and Ball Torture

CBT is getting your kicks from manipulating your cock and balls, or those of others, to cause pain. It can be anything from squeezing, slapping, binding or stomping on your cock and balls. Torturing your own, or someone else’s cock can be incredibly hot for some, and guys claim that the endorphins released by CBT add to the sensitivity of their cock and intensity of their orgasm.

CBT can be as extreme as cutting, or punching or kicking someone in the balls, or as moderate as pulling, shaving, or pinching the skin with pegs.  As men know, your cock is one of the most sensitive places on the body and a strong symbol of masculine identity- even the biggest guys can be brought down by a blow to the balls.

When another guy takes your dick in their hands they can hold complete control over you and whether you receive pleasure or pain is completely up to them. This feeling is heightened when bondage and blindfolding is involved.


Electro is the art of using an electrical current to stimulate the nerves of the body. This is done with tools that plug into a power source (Violet Wand, TENS, EMS or ‘made-for-play’ units) and can be done on you by yourself, or with partners.

The electric shock can tingle or be painful, a short jolt or a prolonged stimulation. Often the excitement stems from the anticipation between the jolts, but focused electric current on your cock and arse can produce powerful orgasms not usually possible in vanilla sex. Specialised internal attachments like sounds and butt plugs, as well as external electrodes may be used, as well as specific gels and lubes that conduct electricity.

Think About

Regardless of your kink, with any fetish play the best way to reduce risk is to negotiate your boundaries with your partners, this can be before and during play.

Have a look here for a detailed negotiation guide and things to think about when engaging in harder play.


Negotiation doesn’t have to be stale and boring, it can add to the excitement leading up to your encounter, but what’s important is that you and your partners are very clear about what they will and won’t do. Some important points you may want to negotiate with your partner/s prior are:

  • Fuck raw or with condoms
  • Using alcohol or other drugs
  • Safe words
  • Roles
  • Types of play / yours and your partner’s limits
  • Time and place
  • Health voncerns / Relevant medical info
  • After Care

Safe words

A safe word is a simple way to tell someone to stop. These words should be agreed before play, and are best when they’re not a term that could come up easily in conversation, like “Mercy”, to avoid confusion if anyone is screaming in pleasure or yelling “no more” when they mean “more”.  You might want to choose a second safe word that means “slow down”. If you’re using a gag, you may want to agree upon grunts or hand gestures/tapping instead.

After Care

A huge part of dom/sub play is the aftercare. This can involve rewarding your sub, massaging tender skin, sterilising and bandaging any wounds, and checking in with your partners about how they are doing. For all the rough stuff that goes on, BDSM can actually be a very intimate experience and after care is a way of strengthening those bonds of trust and respect.

The Law

Technically, in regards to the law, a person cannot consent to “actual bodily harm”,  such as cutting hair or breaking skin. So if you’re into harder play, be aware that this is a really grey area in the Law and people have been convicted of a crime in the past for BDSM play.

It’s important to note that these cases are very rare, and can be best avoided with all partners consenting to the kink.

Things To Think About With Your Specific Kink


Emergency release: keeping a cutting tool handy, an extra set of keys for cuffs, and easy-release knots help access to medical treatment if anything goes wrong.

Be mindful of who restrains you: people have been robbed, assaulted, and abandoned after being tied up.

Not too tight for too long: Cutting off circulation can do serious harm and some play, like mummification, has been known to suffocate the Sub.

Don’t abandon someone tied up.

One finger for one hour: Ensure there is a finger’s width gap between the skin and the rope/collars/cuffs you’re tying someone up with and to avoid blood clotting or suffocation, only leave them restrained for an hour each time.

Corporal Punishment

Start slow and build up to harder blows to prepare your sub.

Keep a constant verbal communication: “You like that?”, “Yes, sir”. Make sure the bottom is free to give signals to stop or slow down.

Avoid striking areas without much meat like the head (risk to eyes and ears), the spine, the genitals, the kidney area and the stomach.

Spread the blows over a wide surface area to avoid breaking the skin.

Allow for recovery time: the harder you hit, the longer you wait.

Any broken skin can increase the chance of transmission of blood-borne viruses like Hep C and HIV. Hep C can live in dried blood for up to 4-5 days so protect these from other bodily fluids and clean whips/canes/equipment with soapy water or TCP/Viraclean between partners.

Cock and Ball Torture

The cock and balls are easily damaged; swelling, coldness and numbness are signs to stop immediately.

Make sure the bottom is free to give signals to stop or slow down.

Not too tight for too long: cutting off the circulation can cause long-term damage – check the ties every half hour.

Metal cock rings can’t be cut off easily if something goes wrong – leather and rubber ones can.

Seek medical help immediately if you erect cock “cracks” or blood vessels burst, forming a pool under the skin. This can lead to clotting if it keeps growing and this is dangerous.

Get to some immediate medical attention if your balls swell and cause severe pain: this can be a sign they’ve ruptured or the chords holding them in place have twisted. This has serious implications for long-term health.

Breath Control

Breath control can be dangerous if not done right: starved of oxygen, permanent brain damage can occur after 4 minutes, and death after just 4-6 minutes.

Avoid if you have a heart condition: Any lack of oxygen to the brain can cause a heart attack – the body signals the heart to push more blood to the brain long after choking, meaning cardiac arrest can happen hours later.

Don’t do it alone: no matter how safe the precautions, if something goes wrong and you fall unconscious, you may hit your head or continue to choke and there is no way to get help.

Feinting: If you feel feint, lie down. If someone does feint, remove any gags or restraints and place them in the recovery position. If they do not wake up within 60 seconds, call an ambulance immediately.

Avoiding tying anything around the neck can reduce risk: Use your hands or ties over it instead.

If you’re rebreathing through connected gas-masks it is possible for both partners to pass out, take turns instead so one person is always on hand to get help.

Never leave someone alone during breath control play.


Only below the waist: Any electric current passing through the heart or brain can cause serious injury or cardiac arrest. Avoid the chest (including nipples), neck, head, arms and hands.

Watch out for piercings that can get hot and burn the skin.

Allowing the bottom to control the current can help make sure pain thresholds are respected.

Avoid electro if you have epilepsy, a heart condition or history of seizures and strokes.