Corporal punishment has a long and colorful history, but spanking benches themselves are a relatively new development. While certainly inspired by the various positions one might be punished in, the benches themselves were wholly developed by the BDSM community starting in the late 19th century. Mrs. Theresa Berkley, a 19th century British dominatrix, is known for her creation of the Berkley Horse, but this device held the victim in a fairly upright position, instead of bent over as most spanking benches are designed now.
What makes a modern spanking bench? The most basic premise of the spanking bench is that the spankee is bent forward over something offering the bottom to the spanker. The degree of the bending depends greatly upon the bench and the physical ability of the spankee. Some have a very slight angle, while others have the person bent over so far that the head is lower than the bottom. Care should be taken at this angle because blood will rush to the spankee’s head.
Some spanking benches are as simple as a modified sawhorse. A birching bench is similar to a tall sawhorse, with a padded top, so that the spankee is up off the ground. More typical spanking benches of this type have knee and arm rests for the spankee to brace themselves on. Often these also have eye-bolts so that the spankee may be tied down securely. Some benches of this type even have adjustable knee and arm pads to fit spankees of various sizes.
Other spanking benches are made so that the spankee is kneeing on one pad and bent over the other. Last month’s dungeon featured two such benches, and this month we have another, lower to the ground and more compact. Some of these are adjustable, giving you different angles of leaning. They also usually have tie down points to help secure wiggly bottoms.
Master Doug also has a third type of spanking bench. This one is made so the spankee is standing up and leaning over a flat, slatted surface. The top surface is adjustable upwards, to allow for angles anywhere from straight up to bent 90 degrees. The standing surface is also a set of boards that can be removed for taller spankees. This piece is one of his favorites and is quite versatile and popular with his guests.
There are many different styles of spanking benches you could have in your dungeon. When choosing or making one, there are some things to take into consideration. Who is going to use it? Be sure it either fits, or is adjustable to the various people who may want to use it. For safety, be sure that the material is free of sharp edges or splinters. And also be aware of how easy it will be to clean. Bodily fluids should be easy to remove to protect all your guests. Above all, make it something that fits you and your space. This is your dungeon, make it your own.