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Forums > Technical Discussion > Asked to teach a safety class for a BDSM group...

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ThelemicPotter
SILVER Member since Aug 2007

newbie
Location: Buffalo NY, USA

Total posts: 29
Posted:I have been asked to teach fire safety to a BDSM group and am wondering if anyone has done this before and has any ideas I might not have thought of yet. I guess one of the members wants to get into fire play but hasn't a clue how to be smart about it, so associate who'se a member of our fire tribe is asking me to come and teach.

One thing I am concerned with is the use of "fire floggers" I've seen them online and can't help but think they are a really terrible idea. I do a lot of ocntact fire, but have never used loose wicks. I know one person in the group wants to get one, but no one has ever used one. I keep thinking that they'll end up transfering a LOT of fuel to the person. Has anyone used them, or anything like them? Got any suggestions for working with them?

The other thing that the guy brought up was using a spray bottle full of fuel for "fire breathing" type things. I was glad to hear he didn't want fuel in his mouth, but I really don't have any experiance with this idea. I really dislike the thought of poiting it at a person, but I'm not into a lot of what they do. What do you guys think, is that even workable, i mean for making a small fire ball? Will the plastic nozel just fuse? chances of the plastic melting in the fuel before the fire is even lit? Can something like that be done as a form of contact?

Things I'll be covering in detail:
Clothing and equipment materials (no platics!)
Gradual build up of intensity and comfort
the absolute need for a third person as safety.
equipment, fuel types, first aid, perimiter, all the basic performance stuff.

And YES, this is a group of consenting adults who engage in dagerous activites, so are we as fire performers. This isn't my scene and I don't pretend to understand it. I'm doing this as a favor, as my friend takes safety as his first concern, I'd rather know they were educated then to pretend that it's not going on. I understand what they want to do is far beyond the comfort level of probably most folks here. This is to be a technical discussion, not one on ethincs, morals, or any one's personal issues.

Thanks a bunch.

Love.
Potter.


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Fire_Moose
SILVER Member since May 2007

Fire_Moose

Elusive and Bearded
Location: Scottsdale, AZ, USA

Total posts: 3597
Posted:i would go over yer itinerary and then let them know that the stuff about floggers etc you don;t know about and they should try to find someone who has experience with that kind of stuff.

O.B.E.S.E.

Owned by Mynci!

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FireTom


Stargazer


Total posts: 6650
Posted:wow - shaky territory that is...

when attempting to engulf a person in fire - an SFX EXPERT is needed. Definitely don't do it without... and definitely don't use liquid... the ONLY proper way I could think of is to use powder (lycopodium)...

but consult a pyrotechnician... a fireperformer without complete education in the field is not a proper substitute wink

remember: "meatspace" does not = BBQ


the best smiles are the ones you lead to wink

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Stout
SILVER Member since May 2004

Stout

Pooh-Bah
Location: Canada

Total posts: 1872
Posted:I always thought fire floggers were a performance tool but I went asearchin' and came up with Luxotica (no link' cause...you know) who seem to imply that their floggers are intended to be used on people.

I'd say keep them as performance tools, maybe suitable for a stage act where someones leather covered ass gets spanked and contact is simulated rather than actual.

Then there's the issue of filling the "playspace" with noxious fumes, unless of course the idea is to use it outdoors only.

Teach them how to trace with alcohol as a variation on the dripping candle wax scenario, it's way safer than wielding a possibly improperly spun off flogger against someone's bare skin.


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ThelemicPotter
SILVER Member since Aug 2007

newbie
Location: Buffalo NY, USA

Total posts: 29
Posted:Quote:"meatspace" does not = BBQ
Awesome!

Good point on the liquid stuff, I've got a SFX guy I'll call, shoot he may be all excited about the group too.

Basically my friend is wanting me to come in and tell this guy he's crazy and should forget about getting into anything more then some contact fire. But I figured I'd post here incase anyone had any other tricks they'd share to help appease the crazies.

I'll be seeing luxotica next weekend at WildFire (Can't wait!!!! So excited!!!), I guess I'll ask them for a demo and ideas on it's use...


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FireTom


Stargazer


Total posts: 6650
Posted:just watched the floggers on youtube...

OMfunkybigG - let them sign a waiver first!
I can't get my head around this, however...


the best smiles are the ones you lead to wink

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HepCatChris


stranger


Total posts: 1
Posted:I've only seen someone use a fire flogger once, but I suspect it was a good example of how it is done. Both the 'bottom' (person receiving) and the 'top' (person wielding the flogger) were very experienced in BDSM edge play (more extreme risk) play. Playing with fire always counts as edge play, but the fire-flogging was not an extreme sensation for the bottom to endure as one may expect from edge play in general.

In normal (non-fire) flogging the tails are used as impact on the bottom, often with a significant portion of the tails laying on their shoulders or butt. However when I saw the 'fire flogging' the on-fire tails were used to bring the heat close to the bottom in a swinging past them motion. For more intensity, when the fuel was nearing the point of burning out, the top would make slight contact with the tails (but this was clearly a 'very experienced' choice). The top certainly did not give any of the typical thuddy landing you see in normal flogging.

This was done outdoors with plenty of space around them. After each time of loading and igniting the flogger the top made sure it wasn't throwing off fuel before approaching the bottom (who had a wet towel to protect the head/hair). They had a couple of spotters (part of safety crew) holding fireproof blankets and watching the bottom's back as they stood a little back and mostly off to each side of the bottom. There was also large amounts of water, fire extinguishers, and more blankets nearby as well as some additional safety crew.

The spotters are extremely important since flame-ups on the bottom will be the harder to see blue and won't be very bright (at first?) while the top is holding a very bright mass of flame. Even with squeezing out & spinning out fuel ahead of time there was still an occasional fuel transfer to the bottom. Even though there was decent amount of space between the flogger and the bottom there was an occasional small ignition of this fuel (usually 1-3 swings after transfer though sometimes it would evaporate without ignition). Every flare-up was very minor and while the spotters need to start to move in right away all of these flair-ups burned off before they could take more then one step. It was also really interesting seeing the ripple of reaction, first the spotters notice the flair-up, then the audience reacts and the bottom notices some heat. Because the top is holding the bright flaming flogger it wasn't until after he could register the audience reaction that he could even know something unusual happened. This is partly because the top is finishing the swing follow through, but also because 'night vision' is not as good for the top being so close to the bright flame while the flair-ups on the bottom are much more subtle in color (and intensity of course). So yes, those spotters are critical due to the extreme difference in observation and reaction time, not to mention that the top still has a lot of flame in hand that needs to be dropped before being able to move in to assist any out of control flair-up.

All in all the bottom described the sensation as being massaged with fire with the occasional rush of the minor flair-ups, and the roar of the swinging flogger was an auditory delight. Clearly there is a psychological aspect as well - Dear God! You are playing with fire! With all that said, the general rule is that no amount of reading can really prepare you for this kind of play. If someone wants to get in to fire-flogging they should find an experienced safe & sane top to train them in person.

Fire is dangerous, with all of the safety precautions it is still edge play. Without the safety precautions, especially the spotters and training, it would just be stupid.


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Pele
BRONZE Member since Dec 2000

Pele

the henna lady
Location: WNY, USA

Total posts: 6193
Posted:I've done this, a lot. I'll be teaching it at the next Rochester Erotic Arts Fest too.

There are a couple things to keep in mind.

They will use a tool, whether you think it's safe or not. Floggers can't be spun off, they need to be squeezed off in order to prevent the transfer of so much excess fuel...absolutely. Also, between floggings the Dom should wipe their hand over the persons skin in order to make sure there is not a fire, a build up of excessive fuel or some other unseen issue.

BDSM fire play shouldn't be used with extreme bondage and/or gagging. That puts the recipients safety at extreme risk. Ropes burn and many are synthetic blends. The Sub should *always* be able to get out of any restraints on his/her own and quickly.

A third person does not always need to be present and in fact, can be counter productive to the experience. I disagree with this suggestion completely. This isn't a performance, and usually it's not for display, so I teach them full safety-as I would any crew member I have, precaution, controlling the size of the fire they are working with and what to look for and so two people is enough provided that play is done with care and caution ...and let me tell you, true BDSM-ers do apply awesome standards of care and caution.
However, a safe word is even more important in this case. I always emphasize that.

While redness in things like paddling and such is expected, it means a very different thing in erotic fire play and can mean that the upper levels of the skin have been burned and continuing play can result in more damage. They need to be made aware of this because red skin isn't a massive alarm to them.

I always instruct to start with less sensitive places, the tops of the arms, the shins or outside of the leg, the stomach, the decolletage and work their way to more sensitive areas. This helps to define boundaries of what someone can handle.

Hair. I've know some very hairy men get into BDSM. I always recommend they remove it prior to fire play.

Periodically in the session, depending on how long it will last, a moist towel should be used to wipe down the skin. This helps to keep excess fuel from building up but also helps to protect from chemical burns that fuel left on the skin for prolonged periods of time can result in, especially in sensitive areas.

Spray bottles do not create enough of a mist to get a good enough fire from them, and they are plastic. Using things like corn starch is just bad as it's explosive not flammable. You might want to nix the "breathing" idea for those reasons.

Clothes to avoid that might not be on your normal list; latex builds up and retains heat. I've heard students tell me they've passed out from wearing it during fire play. Latex body paint is in this as well.
Extreme rope wear.
Chains. I know someone who got the flogger caught in one.
Anything that will impede quick and steady motion in case of emergency (like a new pair of platform stilettos. I tend to stress that this isn't the time to try out a new BDSM outfit really).

Setting. This is not something for a bedroom, laying on a blanket amidst a bunch of pillows. It is completely important that people be made aware of this. This is something more appropriate for a dungeon, preferably with concrete floors. This is also something that things like curtains and fans and such need to be taken stock of. Even things like saw horses and St. Andrews Crosses are fine, but since their construct base is usually wood, it becomes important for them to understand to not have excess fuel and really assess their surroundings and other props that might go up or impede their play.

A huge part of BDSM is for the sub to get lost in the experience however, because it is fire s/he needs to remain aware that normal boundaries and thresh holds will be different, and absolutely need to be paid attention to.

Ummm...without my workshop outline in front of me, this is what I remember.

Have fun!

EDITED_BY: Pele (1255612033)


Pele
Higher, higher burning fire...making music like a choir
"Oooh look! A pub!" -exclaimed after recovering from a stupid fall
"And for the decadence of art, nothing beats a roaring fire." -TMK

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