Types Of Play 1; Floggers
Author: Raven Shadowborne © 1998
|One of the most confusing
parts of this lifestyle for many people is the toys we use. A person will
look at some of the toys and think to themselves someone actually enjoys
being hit with a leather whip? Shock and disbelief can come into play
here. For others, the idea is extremely exciting and they can't wait to
try it. There are all kinds of toys available to be used and each one
gives a different sensation. The reactions of each person will vary. What
feels good to one person, may not feel good to another. What reaches a
pain limit on one person, may be nowhere close to another's pain limit.
Many think pain is the only type of play available for scenes, but this
is just not true. You can have just as much fun without ever picking up
a toy which is designed to give pain. Some of my most memorable scenes
do not involve whips, crops or any other pain implement. But to start
I'm going to cover, from my point of view, how the toys that I have had
used on me feel to me at different times and why I do or do not enjoy
them. I will start with pain play toys since that is what most people
tend to notice first and question the most.
I'll start with my favorite whips, floggers. There are different kinds of floggers. They range from a very soft touch to a hard bite. The ones I have felt range from a soft suede to a medium leather cat o nine. The lighter floggers feel soft to my skin, caressing and arousing. They are good warm up whips for a long session or for me, a nice variation to foreplay. They range in material from unbraided soft nylon rope (no knots), silk, velvet, deerskin, and lighter leathers with other materials also being used. Their touch on my skin will warm it slightly without causing any real pain. Upon striking the tails create a thudding noise but no real bite. My body will relax beneath them and this gentle buildup allows me to easily get into the session and begin to attain what is known as sub space or floating. These warm up sessions provide my mind the opportunity to make the transition from hitting equals pain to hitting equals pleasure by causing my body to release endorphins. (natural pain killers) These softer floggers have been used on various parts of my body, my upper back (shoulder area), buttocks, thighs (inner, outer, front and back) calves, feet, breasts and even genitals. The softer floggers usually leave little to no marks, and bruising is not easy to do. Though repeatedly striking the same area with heavy blows can produce bruises as can striking more delicate skin like inner thighs and genital area.
The medium weight floggers vary in materials and produce more of a sting on contact with the skin than those which are classed as light/soft floggers. If I have been warmed up before the use of one of these whips I will barely feel the sting at all before my nerves turn the slight pain to pleasure instead. These floggers can mark and leave bruises. I do like the thin red lines the horsetail flogger I have (as well as the cat o nine) leaves on my skin. These whips can also be used as warm up by varying the intensity of the blows. There are times I prefer to start with one of these floggers. These whips, when used following a warm up with the lighter versions, can easily send me into full sub space where I feel no pain but my whole body comes alive. In this class of whips I have had used on me a horsetail flogger (named because of the number of tails it has) which is comprised of about 40 tails or so, the width of a leather boot lacing. The tails are square not flat, and the tips are blunted not slanted to a point. Also, I have had a rope flogger where the unbraided nylon rope was knotted in varying spots along it's length, these knots are what cause the sting. Lastly, a leather cat o nine, so called because of the number of tails it has (the one I have personal experience with has 10 tails) they are of thin leather, again squared with blunted tips. These whips with a medium strength blow will leave red lines on my skin and provide a nice sting. If I am already warmed up, the sting is barely felt. A stronger blow can raise welts on my skin which may or may not bruise. The heavier strokes can not be done one me unless I am fully in sub space. If they are done too soon, the pain can actually snap me out of floating and bring me down. As can a misplaced blow or wrapping the tails.
The heavy floggers, I have no personal experience with. I have seen them, but never felt one on my own body. From what I understand, they produce a sharper sting on contact and can easily leave marks or bruises. I also understand they can cut the skin depending on the material used. These floggers are usually heavier leather, with thin tails. Some will have braided tails or knots placed in varying places along the tails.
Other types of whips, which I also have no personal experience with, are single tail whips (one tail), bullwhips and horse hair floggers, rubber floggers and chain floggers. From what I understand these require great skill and can easily injure a person struck by them.
Braided or knotted tails appear in every class of flogger, they increase the bite (or thud, depending on material) the flogger has. Also, if the tips are cut in such a way that they end in points the flogger will carry more bite. The tips of the tails snap against the skin when they land. The stronger the blow, the faster the tails move, and the harder the tips hit the skin. The number of tails also increases the pain factor of a whip. Less tails allows more air flow and speed when striking. More tails decreases the air flow between them and therefor cutting back on some of the strength which the tails have upon landing.
For me, not being much of a masochist (though that will probably change as everything else does in time), I have a fairly low pain tolerance. For my body to turn the feel of a flogger from a painful sensation to one that is very pleasurable I need to be warmed up first. I have found that the more physically aroused I am, the higher my pain tolerance. The endorphins in my body will prevent me from feeling alot of actual pain.
I have noticed that at different times of the month my pain tolerance changes. I believe this has something to do with the natural hormonal changes in a woman's body. During PMS my body is highly sensitive to sensation and has a very low pain threshold same as during menstruation itself. Stress also plays a role in how high or low my pain tolerance becomes. If I am overly stressed, my pain tolerance is a lot higher and I prefer to start with the medium weight floggers rather than the softer ones. If I am overly tired, my body is more sensitive to pain as well. I have spoken with other submissive women who enjoy pain play and they say the same thing. Their tolerance levels change throughout the month. Another thing which affects how I react to different types of floggers is my mood. If I am cranky or otherwise upset, I have a higher pain tolerance. Endorphins are already present in my system. If I am anticipating a scene, I will warm up faster than I would if I am not anticipating a scene. The mind is the largest sexual organ, arouse the mind and the body usually follows. These variances are all normal. It does take some time to learn exactly what your body is willing to handle. Pay attention to your body's signals, your moods, and your reactions. Learn how you, personally, react to each toy and share what you've learned with your partner. Share your current state of mind and body with your partner before a session and your play sessions will be more pleasurable. Also be aware that your tolerance levels will change over time as well.