Consensual spanking

Erotic spanking

Erotic spanking is the practice of spanking another person for the sexual gratification of either or both parties. Subjects may use their hands, or other tools, such as spanking paddles or canes. Activities range from occasional sensual interplay to domestic discipline and may or may not include a variety of implements. Many cultures recognized pain as an aphrodisiac early on — the Kama Sutra, in particular, goes into specific detail on how to properly strike a partner during sex.


Representations of erotic spanking and flagellation make up a large portion of Victorian pornography (see 1000 Nudes by Koetzle, the first acknowledged homosexual spank star in 1853.) Hundreds of thousands of engravings, photographs, and/or literary depictions of spanking and flagellation ("birching") fantasies circulated during the Victorian era, including erotic novellas like Lady Bumtickler's Revels, The Whippingham Papers, Wezzellian Behaviors, Yerbouti Ermine or An Exhibition of Female Flagellants.


Many spankings are carried out with the use of bare hands, or with spanking implements such as paddles, straps, hairbrushes, and belts .

Sometimes other implements are used for the activity: such as a cane, riding crop, whip, switch (rod), birch, gloves, a plastic bottle (the action is called bottling), a ruler (even a yardstick) or martinet. However, these would not accurately be called spanking. (see Spanking implements). Erotic spankings are commonly combined with other forms of sexual foreplay, such as oral sex, sexual roleplaying and/or ageplay. The most common type of erotic spanking is administered on the bare buttocks , but can also be combined with bondage, in order to heighten sexual arousal and feelings of helplessness in the spankee.

Positions used may include:

  • over the knees (OTK) or across the lap
  • stooped over a chair or couch, or bench
  • on hands and knees (bed or floor)
  • on shoulder of spanker
  • kneeling on a bed or ottoman, stooped over with hands on the floor
  • bent under the arm of the spanker
  • lying face down on a bed
  • bent over, touching toes or over a desk
  • "diaper position" (lying on back with legs raised upward and toward chest)
  • handcuffed to a bed
  • tied to a doorway
  • tied to a tree or pole that is in a safe area outside
  • legs spread apart, almost in the splits position.

Those interested in giving or receiving erotic spankings are sometimes known as spankophiles. Examples include the poet Algernon Swinburne (as implied repeatedly in his poetry) and the philosopher Jean-Jacques Rousseau, as detailed in his autobiography Confessions:

... Miss Lambercier... exerted a mother's authority, even to inflicting on us... the punishment of infants... Who would believe this childish discipline, received at eight years old, from the hands of a woman of thirty, should influence my propensities, my desires, my passions, for the rest of my life... To fall at the feet of an imperious mistress, obey her mandates, or implore pardon, were for me the most exquisite enjoyments, and the more my blood was inflamed by the efforts of a lively imagination the more I acquired the appearance of a whining lover."


Dom: The term is short for "Dominant" and refers to the person in the spanking relationship as the one who delivers the spanking. In lifestyle spanking, the Dom assumes the role of caretaker and disciplinarian.

Implement: Refers to the object being used to deliver the spanking.

Safe word: This is a word in which participants within a spanking session agree to use to signify that the consensual spanking should be stopped. The word is necessary because spanking frequently occurs within the context of a role play where it is typical for the spanked individual to protest.

Spanking Session: This is the time in which the participants are engaged in the act of spanking. Some consider any role play leading up to and afterwards to be a part of the session.

Sub: The term is short for "Submissive" and refers to the person in the spanking relationship as the one who receives the spanking.

Subspace: This is a euphoric physical and mental state achieved by the spankee during the course of a spanking session.


Adult spanking is considered taboo in the United States and is frequently classified as part of the BDSM culture. Some participants tend to reject the classification because they see their fetish as being more mental than physical, though this in turn reflects prejudices about BDSM which covers a range of fetishes including some that are purely mental. The adult spanking community suffers from a lack of cohesive identity within the United States because its association with BDSM has resulted in a great deal of shared terminology and confusion over the difference between adult [Punishment] spanking and erotic spanking. There are a number of significant publications that are readily available in public newsstands. Consequently, the bulk of adult spanking literature and guides are developed in this region.


Ageplay is a type of sexual roleplay which, because of its dominance and submission aspects, is considered a form of BDSM. It may be referred to as edgeplay because of its level of social acceptability; such roleplay may involve (fictional) incest, and a common reaction is to associate child role playing in a sexual situation with pedophilia. Most sexual age players resent any association with pedophilia, and claim that neither party is encouraged to believe there is a real child involved, and that it involves two consenting adults with one expressing the assumed emotional vulnerability of a child. Age players typically use spanking as a part of their role playing activities. The use of spanking in this form is not consistent with the manner in which “traditional” spankos enjoy spanking. The key difference is that the age player is primarily concerned with playing the role of a child whereas the spanko is primarily concerned about fantasizing about situations in which spankings would be appropriate when age is part of their role play. The age player remains in the child role whether or not a spanking is part of their play.


Adult spanking is a highly contentious form of discipline spanking that is frequently mis-categorized and misunderstood. The controversy stems from a multitude of sources. First, there are those that prefer to consider spanking in this form as something that can only occur between a parent and a child. This opinion is backed up by the APA who includes parent - child relationship as part of the definition . Second, there are few recognized legitimate scientific studies that have been conducted on the subject. The leading source of funding for such research is an organization that earns its revenue through the promotion of entertainment spanking services leading skeptics to question the legitimacy of the work. Third, the lack of credible licensed practitioners often leads to individual claims of group membership through self-diagnosis, affirmation from others who have made similar claims and a variety of alternative therapists. A study by McNulty and Wardle suggests that attempts to seek help through typical support channels may lead individuals to seek comfort through unconventional means .

Adult spanking differs from traditional parent-child spanking in that the act is between two consenting adults. Adults engage in the activity for several different reasons. The most common is simply playful spanking amongst people engaging in other intimate activities. People who require spanking to be a part of their sexual play are considered spanking fetishists. There are two groups of people whose use of spanking is discipline related. The first group incorporates spanking as part of their overall belief system in how a husband and wife should interrelate (see domestic discipline).

The second group considers spanking to be an essential component of their recovery and/or development.These individuals subscribe to the notion that they require some form of retraining or reparenting to be able to function as adults . They claim that the act of spanking is a necessary mechanism for modifying the behavior of the adapted child ego state of the adult being spanked . The idea is extracted from Alexander’s claim that a corrective emotional experience was required to allow patients to repair traumatic influence of previous experiences . They claim is not without merit as preliminary studies into this class of adult spanking indicate that participants have suffered from some form of childhood abuse. However, there is evidence to suggest that these individuals are in fact “stuck” in the earlier stages of recovery and lack the appropriate support to move on .

See also

Sources and further reading

  • The Spanking Art Wiki
  • Biblio Curiosa Wiki
  • Koetzle, Michael. 1000 Nudes: A History of Erotic Photography from 1839-1939. Taschen, 2005.
  • Lady Green, The Compleat Spanker. Greenery Press, 2000. ISBN 1-890159-00-X.
  • Marcus, Steven. The Other Victorians. Basic Books, 1966.
  • Rousseau, Jean-Jaques. The Confessions of Jean-Jaques Rousseau. London: Penguin Books, 1953.
  • Swinburne, Charles Algernon. The Works of Charles Algernon Swinburne. Hertfordshire: Wordsworth Editions, 1995.
  • Beginner's Guide to Spanking


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