This is a guest post by Nadia West for the BDSM activities series.
I'm fairly new to caning, but I've discovered that I like it a lot (even if I can't take as much as some people can). I was afraid of canes for a long time because I had heard they're rough pain-wise. While I like pain I'm not truly a pain slut. And it's true, they are rough - the impact is concentrated along one thin area. But I find that a caning puts me into subspace wonderfully, perhaps better than any other implement.
I don't have experience with different types of canes. MasterDoc's (my Dom) are rattan with handmade handles. Rattan is pretty standard cane material. It doesn't look like the rattan cane with the crook is fundamentally different than a straight rattan cane. I got to watch a sub get beaten with a carbon fiber cane recently – seems harsher than the more flexible rattan. I've also read that carbon fiber canes conduct electricity, and therefore can be used creatively with a Violet Wand. Canes come in other materials, including acrylic and aluminum. The less flexible a cane is, the more pain it's going to produce.
My Dom has always warmed me up first with his hand, and/or a paddle. He gets my ass nice and rosy and my pain tolerance starts to improve with warm up. Then he picks out the thinnest cane we have (we're working our way up to the thickest of the three someday) and starts with some taps. Light taps aren't too painful, but the real attraction of the cane is a sharp hit. Angry red stripes left on your ass is definitely a desirable, and kinkily attractive, result. With a sharp hit, the pain surges and I have to focus my breathing. I slowly breathe in and out so I can manage the pain. Sometimes my Dom strokes my legs until my tense muscles start to relax. Then he resumes with the cane. It's quite painful, but unlike paddling, it's a short, sharp pain. Paddling usually goes on with the paddle hitting the same area repeatedly, and that gives me a longer lasting pain. While the cane strokes have to be measured and I need more breaks to process the pain, it feels exhilarating to take it.
It's intense dealing with the sharp pain, but this makes me feel even more proud about taking it than pain from other implements. I probably cry out more, but this isn't necessarily a bad thing. (I'm sure sadists just love those little cries of pain.) The intensity leads me into subspace fairly quickly. As I enter subspace, I find that strokes of the cane that would ordinarily hurt are somehow manageable. I feel proud of myself for immediately converting the pain into pleasure. Some strikes do hurt though, and it's not like the caning will ever be negligible stimulating. I get to float between, “Wow, that should hurt but it really doesn't feel like much,” to “Holy shit that hurt! I'm holding my breath involuntarily now; I need to take deep breaths.”
At the end of a caning, I'm really wet and in a total subspace buzz. With just a little sexual teasing at that point I'd probably gladly do anything whatsoever that my dominant asked of me (even things that I usually have a hard time with, like piss play). I look forward to working my way up to more intense canes, and I'm glad that I didn't let my fear keep me from trying them out.
Nadia West blogs about her adventures with her Dom over at Diary of Kinky Librarian (www.diaryofakinkylibrarian.com). While she's been a kinkster for years, she's only been in a D/s relationship for two and a half years. Other favorite pastimes include (receiving) wax play, orgasm control, flogging and giving blow jobs. She also twitters at www.twitter.com/nadiawest.