Portrait of Marquis de Sade by Charles-Amédée-Philippe van Loo (1761)
A suspended model in a hogtie bondage. Her nipples are clamped and she is gagged with a ball gag harness
Autosadism is inflicting of pain or humiliation on oneself. The photo shows pornographic actress Felicia Fox pouring hot wax over herself in front of an audience (U.S. 2005). Her nipples and genitals are also clamped.
Tied woman lying down hogtied
A submissive woman bound to a Saint Andrew's Cross being whipped at the Folsom Street Fair. The red marks on her body are from the whipping.
Bound nude man
S&M may involve painful acts such as cock and ball torture. Image shows a dominant woman holding a bound man's penis, applying electricity to his testicles at the Folsom Street Fair.
Frogtied woman gagged with duct tape
Woman's buttocks turned red as a result of a paddling
Man handcuffed to a bedrail, with a blindfold on
Play piercing on a woman's back using multiple needles
A ball-gagged model whose face is bound using bondage harness and bondage collar
Pussy torture: wax play done on a bound nude woman's genitals at Wave-Gotik-Treffen festival, Germany, 2014.
Rope bondage: A gagged model bound in an uncomfortable position using breast bondage and crotch ropes
A submissive man is consoled by his dominant after she has made his back bloody by beating.
A woman wearing a steel collar and steel handcuffs.
Petplay: Woman bound outdoor using a dog's chain, at the Folsom Street Fair.
Bondage demonstration at the 2003 Folsom Street Fair
Multiple knots being tied by a male bondage rigger, so as to ensure a strong rope bondage.
A woman wearing an armbinder
A woman chained to a Saint Andrew's cross
Two women mummified with duct tape, restraining their entire bodies, at Exxxotica 2013
A Shibari expert weaves a rope on a woman's upper body at Venus Berlin, 2019.
Two women in frogtie bondage
A male bondage rigger demonstrates to the audience how to do rope bondage at the 2015 BoundCon event in Germany. The bondage technique used here is box tie, a basic form of arm and breast bondage.
A leather dog mask worn over a latex coat.
Erotic pose of three women in bondage gear
Bondage with fluorescent ropes

Bondage itself does not necessarily imply sadomasochism.

- Bondage (BDSM)

However, the term BDSM also includes B&D (bondage and discipline), D/s (dominance and submission), and S&M (sadism and masochism).

- Sadomasochism
Portrait of Marquis de Sade by Charles-Amédée-Philippe van Loo (1761)

3 related topics

Alpha

The BDSM initialism

BDSM

The BDSM initialism
Erotic humiliation: A submissive woman publicly caged at the Folsom Street Fair in U.S., with cane markings on her body.
A male bondage rigger demonstrates to the audience how to do rope bondage at the 2015 BoundCon event in Germany. The bondage technique used here is box tie, a basic form of arm and breast bondage.
Strappado with rope and a spreader bar. This practice has a distinct effect of immobilization and pain.
Portrait of Marquis de Sade by Charles-Amédée-Philippe van Loo (1761)
BDSM is commonly misconceived to be "all about pain". This 1921 art of a clothed male, naked female is an illustration of male dominance and female submission.
A woman being put in suspension bondage at BoundCon, Germany, 2013. Since the submissive is vulnerable to a potential fall, it is important that great care is taken.
Flogging of a bound man by a dominatrix at the Exxxotica adult event, United States, 2009
BDSM activists at Taiwan Pride 2005, Taipei
A sulky cart drawn by a pony-girl, an example of petplay at the Folsom Parade, 2012. She is wearing a bit gag and a neck collar, to which are attached a ring of O and a leash. Bells are hung from her pierced nipples. All these symbols indicate she is roleplaying a 'pet slave'.
A bondage pornography shoot in the U.S., 2011
A whipping scene where both dominant and submissives are female, Paris, 1930
A fresco in the Etruscan Tomb of the Whipping, 5th century BC
Copper engraving, about 1780
Flagellation scene, illustration to Fanny Hill by Édouard-Henri Avril, 1907
Foot worship of one of the feet of a dominatrix by a submissive man. Her other foot rests over the man's head, using it as a footstool (human furniture). This sketch is from a 1950 work named Bizarre Honeymoon.
Start of the leather contingent at the 2004 San Francisco gay pride parade
Consensual giving or receiving of pain is legal in Austria. Photo shows wax play at the Eros Pyramide sex show, Austria, 2009.
Sexual activity may occur in BDSM, but it is not essential part of BDSM. Photo shows erotic humiliation of sexual nature being performed at Wave-Gotik-Treffen music festival, Germany, 2014. The submissive woman is stripped naked, hung upside down, whipped and a master doing sexual roleplay of a devil forces himself on her to cause vagina torture.
Spanking with a paddle in a BDSM dungeon in New York City
The BDSM rights flag with triskelion-type emblem
The leather pride flag, a symbol of the BDSM and fetish subculture
Fanny Pistor (with whip) and Leopold von Sacher-Masoch. Venus in Furs was inspired by the author's own life where he was dominated by a woman.

BDSM is a variety of often erotic practices or roleplaying involving bondage, discipline, dominance and submission, sadomasochism, and other related interpersonal dynamics.

This 1921 illustration of a clothed male and naked female shows an example of female submission. The art is by Georges Topfer from his work Le rêve d’un flagellant ("The Dream of a Flagellant").

Dominance and submission

Set of behaviors, customs, and rituals involving the submission of one person to another in an erotic episode or lifestyle.

Set of behaviors, customs, and rituals involving the submission of one person to another in an erotic episode or lifestyle.

This 1921 illustration of a clothed male and naked female shows an example of female submission. The art is by Georges Topfer from his work Le rêve d’un flagellant ("The Dream of a Flagellant").
A D/s couple posing for a picture. Many submissives wear a collar to denote their status and commitment.
A dominant male publicly holds two submissive females using leashes tied to their neck, Folsom Street Fair, 2010
A man doing petplay at Folsom Street Fair and wearing dog leash in his neck.
A nude submissive female cleans the shoe of her male master by licking it (with her consent). Scene is of a public road in USA, 2012.
A woman submissive wearing a typical "slave collar" at Cologne Pride. Her male master is pulling her using the ring of O attached to the collar. The woman is also wearing a mouth gag and her hands are in bondage.
Leopold von Sacher-Masoch and Fanny Pistor (Baroness Bogdanoff)

In other cases, it can be intensely physical, sometimes crossing into sadomasochism.

A 1995 study indicates that 89% of heterosexual females who are active in BDSM expressed a preference for the submissive-recipient role in sexual bondage, expressing also a preference for a dominant male, and that 71% of heterosexual males preferred a dominant-initiator role.

BDSM couples, with the female tops sitting on the male bottoms kneeling, leashed and in handcuffs, at 2006 Cologne Pride, Germany.

Top, bottom, switch

The terms top, bottom, and switch are used to describe roles for the duration of a sexual act or they may more broadly denote a psychological, social, or sexual identity, or indicate one's usual preference.

The terms top, bottom, and switch are used to describe roles for the duration of a sexual act or they may more broadly denote a psychological, social, or sexual identity, or indicate one's usual preference.

BDSM couples, with the female tops sitting on the male bottoms kneeling, leashed and in handcuffs, at 2006 Cologne Pride, Germany.
A nude submissive female in "Inspection" pose - used when Master / prospective Master has to inspect the submissive's body.
A gagged woman with bound hands sits in a submissive position. Her top holds her with a chain leash tied around her neck at Folsom Street Fair.

In BDSM, top can mean either a dominant partner in BDSM play (such as flogging, binding, being master, humiliating, and sexual play), or a partner who applies stimulation to another, and who may or may not be dominant.

The terms sadism and masochism is the giving and receiving of pleasure from acts involving the receipt or infliction of pain or humiliation.