Connecting the Ropes: A Rope Bondage Curriculum

Rationale

In the past three years of my own rope education, I’ve wanted some way to see the big picture, or some structure into which I could fit the various pieces I picked up from different places. I also wanted to try to think through the essential elements vs. the interesting variations and to try to sketch out some sort of logical progression.

So, I put this together mainly for my own benefit as a way to situate rope-related knowledge, skills, and ties into a larger context. These are also my current best thoughts on what I would suggest to someone who asked for my help with learning about rope bondage.

But this is not any sort of attempt at finding “the one true way” of legend. This little outline of mine is not meant to be dogmatic, nor is it exhaustive. It’s not even final … this will be a continual work in progress. It’s also not a list of all the things I know. I don’t claim to be the “master” of all this content, or to be able to teach all these things.

I’m posting this in the hope that it might be one of *many* tools to help others think through their own rope education.

A Word about Levels

I want to make clear from the start that the “levels” identified below only relate to the amount of experience necessary and are not intended to be a value judgment. I’m also not trying to suggest that suspension is the ultimate goal of rope bondage. Mastering the things in “Level 1” could give people all the skills they need to have wonderful, sexy (and safe) bondage fun in the bedroom, and that might be all they’re interested in, and that’s great. Learning intricate, decorative ties could be someone’s passion, and so–after a foundation of safety and basic skills in “Level 1”–everything else in “Level 2” could be ignored except as it furthers those decorative goals, and “Level 3” could be ignored completely. Both of those options, and plenty of others, are equally valid and worthy of respect.

I do believe that any rope work should include most of what is covered in “Level 1,” and that people interested in rope should at least be aware of some of the various approaches and options touched on in “Level 2.” However, beyond that … whatever makes you happy!

Education for Tops and Bottoms

I also want to note that rope education is for bottoms as much as for tops. While bottoms may not need to know how to tie everything that will be tied on them, they should have a solid understanding of the basic information presented here, particularly as it relates to safety and how their own body responds in rope. In addition, there are aspects of rope education directed mainly at bottoms that tops should also be informed about.

Level 1: Foundations

Level 2: Floor Work & Approaches

Level 3: Suspension

Notes for Bottoms

Notes for DMs