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A beginners guide to bondage

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A beginners guide to bondage

The first steps to take when using rope during sex.

By Rebecca Dane

Using rope is all about control, and it can be really, really sexy. The person being tied up trusts the person who is tying them up, and it plays into a very interesting dynamic in the bedroom.

If you’re thinking about incorporating rope into your playtime, make sure to properly research safety measures and techniques. There are some really great rope/bondage meetups that you can find on sites like Fetlife to help you develop your skills prior to trying them out on your partner.

With rope, the safer the better, so keep that in mind before you jump right into it.

We have put together some first steps for you to venture into the rope world.


1. Ask Your Partner

As always, communication is key! If this is something you are potentially interested in, then ask your partner and research the techniques together. Find examples of rope tying online and focus on the beginner situations.

If your partner isn’t into it, you can often attend rope workshops solo and be paired up with someone at the activity. The workshops are to learn, not for sexy times.


2. Consent

Never try to coerce or convince your partner into trying something they don’t want to do. You can agree to give each other time to think about it and bring up the topic in a few weeks or months. If your partner says “yes” to rope bondage, then make sure to go over what is okay and what is not okay. There are an abundance of positions you can do together, so discuss what would be comfortable for the two of you and then stick to it.

If there is anywhere on your body or on your partner’s body that is a strict “no” for tying up, then make sure to let each other know and then respect that. There is no such thing as too much discussion beforehand.


3. Safe Word

As with any BDSM act, you should decide on a safeword ahead of time. Some people use colours like green/yellow/red to make it very clear if everything is okay, if the partner should slow down or if the partner should stop. You can pick whichever safeword you want, but make sure you both agree that the moment it is spoken, that you stop everything immediately. If you’re incorporating ball gags or similar acts that would prohibit speech, then decide on a safeword action. Find a way to make it very clear when a “stop” is a “stop.”

Rope play is all about control – whether you are giving that up or gaining all of it. However, you should both feel like you have control to stop it whenever you need to.


4. Breathe!

Don’t forget to breathe! Using all of your attention to tie up your partner or being nervous about getting tied up can get in the way of taking deep, normal breaths. Make sure the two of you remember to inhale and exhale throughout.


5. Techniques and Ties

There are a lot of different ties that you can try with your partner and they can range from very simple (think handcuffs) to very complex (think suspension). Do a lot of research (or go to a class) and start with simple, beginner ties. It is better to start slow and work your way to more difficult things than to rush into a tie that is too advanced. Make sure your experimenting is safe.


6. Don’t be Alone

Never ever leave your partner tied up and unattended. Make sure you have all your accessories and tools in the room. Make sure you use the washroom prior to starting. Never ever leave your partner alone.

Many people also suggest to not do solo rope ties if you don’t have supervised experience with it.


7. Pain

There is good pain and there is bad pain. If something is hurting you and it does not feel good, then make sure to tell your partner. It could mean that something is not placed properly or it is placed too tightly. Sometimes pain can be pleasurable, but if you’re not sure about it, then always err on the side of caution.


8. Cutters

Because you are dealing with rope and knots, if something goes wrong, you need to be able to get out of it quickly. Having a cutting tool on hand it the only way to ensure that you can quickly escape a bad situation. Undoing each knot is sometimes not going to be fast enough. Having a pair of sharp scissors or equivalent cutting tool will help ease both of your minds and will save any emergency. Keep them in the room with you, so no one has to leave to go get them.



9. Circulation

It is possible to tie a rope too tightly and cut off circulation. Although you might see this in some porn videos, it is not recommended to experiment with this at home and unsupervised. The person doing the tying should always check in with their partner, and the person being tied should always let their partner know if something doesn’t feel good. If you start feeling weak or tingly or uncomfortable, vocalize it.

You should never ever tie someone up in a way that restricts their ability to breathe.


10. Ending

Part of the fun of rope tying up is how the rope then becomes untied. If you’ve had a long, sensual session of rope tying, you don’t want to suddenly rush the ending by rushing to undo everything. Take your time undoing each knot.

If either of you is feeling tired or fatigued, then start to undo the rope, even if you aren’t fully finished doing it up. Having energy for the whole session, even if it wasn’t “completed” will be more enjoyable than rushing through the undoing process.


11. After Care

Prior to starting, you should figure out how you want to deal with after care. Spent some time cuddling or massaging or eating – whatever makes you feel the best. If you want to be enveloped in blankets, let your partner know beforehand so it can be a seamless transition. Rope tying might be more exhausting than you anticipated so make sure to take care of yourself.


Rope play can be very rewarding, but you need to start slowly and work your way up. First and foremost do your research and communicate with your partner!

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