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.
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:
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."
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.
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 .