The Beginner's Guide to Spanking in the Bedroom

Whips and paddles and crops, oh my! Every Saturday following Thanksgiving, people around the world show their appreciation for the pleasure of spanking on a holiday aptly called Spanksgiving. While the origin of the holiday is a little hazy, every year it inspires parties, festivals, stage plays, and, in the age of COVID-19, even educational webinars.

But spanking in the bedroom isn’t just for the holidays. It turns out that this form of impact play is a fairly popular sexual practice all year round. If you’re interested in incorporating some light (or heavy) spanking into your sex life but aren’t sure where to start, has got you covered with this beginner’s guide to spanking and impact play.

What Is Spanking?

Spanking is a common sexual practice that has been documented across a variety of cultures throughout human history. For example, feast your eyes on the Tomb of the Whipping, an Italian fresco dating back to 490 BC that depicts two men flogging a woman “in an erotic context” (that’s academia speak for sexy time). Spanking was also commonly featured in Victorian pornographic novels and photographs. Most recently, it received a lot of attention for its depiction (among other things) in the bestselling Fifty Shades of Grey book series and film franchise.

In essence, spanking of the sensual variety consists of one partner consensually striking or hitting the other across the buttocks for the purpose of sexual gratification. Often, both the person doing the spanking (the spanker, as it were) and the person being spanked (the spankee) receive pleasure from the act. Participants may use their hands and/or implements such as whips and paddles.

Spanking is part of a quite versatile spectrum of impact play, and it can be a standalone element of foreplay or part of other sexual activities. It can also be light and relatively painless or more rough with the intention to cause discomfort. Some people may enjoy both spanking and being spanked (sometimes referred to as a switch), while others may prefer one role over the other.

Is Spanking Considered BDSM?

spanking in the bedroom

In short, yes—spanking is a type of impact play, which falls under the nomenclature of BDSM (Bondage, Discipline, Sadism, Masochism). Impact play refers more broadly to the consensual striking or hitting of a sexual partner on various parts of their body, not just the buttocks. Both impact play and spanking may be considered to be a part of kink play.

While spanking is a common feature in many BDSM practices, there are plenty of people who enjoy the occasional spanking but consider their sexual tastes to be fairly vanilla. That being said, many people find that spanking is an unintimidating introduction to the world of BDSM. Long story short, spanking in the bedroom is technically BDSM, but many people don’t consider it to be truly kinky.

What’s So Great About Spanking in the Bedroom?

Spanksgiving didn’t get its own holiday for nothing! Physiologically speaking, there’s a good answer for why many people enjoy receiving a good spanking: endorphins. For many, the pain of spanking pales in comparison to the subsequent onslaught of feel-good endorphins, the body’s natural painkiller which can have a calming and even euphoric effect.

But endorphins aren’t the only reason people enjoy spanking in the bedroom. Both the buttocks and the palm of the hand are fairly well-padded, meaning a spank is more likely to sting than anything else. But in addition to possibly invoking an endorphin response, spanking also increases blood flow and circulation below the skin, which can actually heighten the sensation of your partner’s touch. (BTW, spanking isn’t the only way to increase sensitivity during sex.)

For others still, spanking their partner or being spanked is more about the power dynamic than anything else. Spanking may make you feel powerful or in control, which is important for some people to achieve orgasm. By the same token, more submissive partners may enjoy the feeling of being reprimanded or disciplined. You know what they say—different strokes for different folks.

Celebrating Your First Spanksgiving? Here’s How to Enjoy It

If you’re new to the world of spanking, the best advice anyone can give is to start slowly, establish boundaries (including a safeword), and keep an open mind. You never know what might turn you or your partner on, so don’t be afraid to try something new even if it sounds a bit strange at first.

Best Positions for Spanking

spanking in the bedroom

Not surprisingly, there are plenty of different positions you can assume when giving or receiving a spanking in bed. Having the spankee bend over the spanker’s knee can be especially enjoyable since it allows the one doing the spanking total control over the one being spanked. Some people also like the closeness this position allows between partners.

Under the arm can be another good position for maintaining close contact and restraining your partner. Straddling the knee of the person doing the spanking can also be particularly pleasurable for women, as it stimulates the clitoris and can even lead to a spanking-induced orgasm. 

If you’re into shame and humiliation (or just really trust your partner) you can try the wheelbarrow position, in which the spanker sits on a chair while the spankee is kept almost upside down, with their torso and hands on the ground and their hips held in place by the spanker. Feel free to get creative with positioning and find what feels best for you.

Get Handsy

There are some pretty intimidating-looking implements for spanking out there. For this reason, we don’t recommend starting with something as intense as say, a bullwhip. In many cases, the best way to start experimenting with spanking requires no equipment at all other than your hand. 

There is more than one way to spank someone, so be sure you’re applying the technique that works best for you and your partner. If you’re particularly sensitive to pain, you may want to work your way up to a full-on slap. Start with a light, teasing flick and gradually increase the amount of force behind each spank.  

When administering a spanking, be sure to keep your fingers together, as separating them can hurt. You’ll also want to slap in an upward motion on the fleshiest part of the butt cheek. Be cautious of spending too much time on any one area, which can lead to painful bruising.

Best BDSM Impact Tools

Once you’ve exhausted all you can do with your hands (or if you just have a particularly high pain tolerance), you can move on to incorporating implements in your spanking sessions. 

  • Paddles are generally oblong and can keep your hand from getting too tired. You can purchase paddles made from wood or leather, in a variety of lengths and designs. Paddles with holes (along with studded paddles) will be especially effective at increasing the sting of each spanking.
  • Crops are composed of a short, flexible rod with a handle on one end and a small piece of leather on the end. With just the slightest flick of a wrist, you can target a particular area and inflict mild to moderate pain.
  • Floggers may sound medieval, but this spanking tool is decidedly common in the modern age. With a shorter handle than a whip and many soft fronds, a flogger gives you plenty of control to keep it light or not. Be careful when using a flogger not to let the fronds wrap around the spankee’s body, which can be undesirably painful and lead to injury.

Shop the Entire Fascinations Impact Play Collection

Be sure to pair your spanking implements with some sexy fetish apparel, a blindfold, or a collar to complete the look. With the largest selection of quality products in the industry and more than 30 years as a leading retailer of sensual products, rest assured you’ll always find what you’re looking for at

We’re proud to offer free shipping on all orders over $89 and will always ship your items discreetly. See our refund policy for details about returns and exchanges. 

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