Welcome To RopeLab!
RopeLab is a Columbus, Ohio group for lovers of Rope Bondage of all styles, including but not limited to Shibari/Kinbaku and Western and fusion styles. RopeLab was established to provide education, practice and play opportunities, social events and meetings, group travel events, and resources. RopeLab is pansexual, gender neutral, does not discriminate and is open to everyone of any gender, sexual preference, shape or size.
The organization is operated by RopeLab, LLC, a non-profit organization dedicated to creating rope bondage educational opportunities, lab and play time, social and networking and travel opportunities. RopeLab has regular monthly meetings, as well as special events like workshops, weekend intensives, photo events, and travel events like BeachBind Here is our FetLife Group Page. Join the group to get updates and meet other members!
All RopeLab activities are consensual and universal safe words apply ("Red" and "Safe word"). All activity must immediately cease should a safe word be used. RopeLab does not support, tolerate or condone violence or abuse of any kind. RopeLab may prohibit entry or ban anyone that has committed a known consent violation or sexual assault, anyone that is a danger to the community, or for any other reason at its discretion
What Is Shibari/Kinbaku?
In the context of modern western erotic rope bondage play, "Kinbaku" and "Shibari" are largely fungible terms. In Japanese "Kinbaku means "tight binding." Shibari is a Japanese word that literally means "to tie" or "to bind." Both are used in the western BDSM to generally refer to styles of Japanese rope bondage or even more broadly to rope bondage in general. While the traditional styles often involve intricate patterns and difficult suspension work, in the BDSM community rope bondage can range from simple bedroom binds for sex to near circus level performances.
Historically, modern erotic rope bondage is a derivative of Hojōjutsu, a traditional Japanese martial art that was used to by the military or police to restrain people using cord or rope. It was used where handcuffs would be used today. In modern culture, Kinbaku influenced rope bondage has become an art form as much as it is used for ertoic bedroom play, with a constant stream of professional and amateur photography, video, and other art forms penetrating everything from social media to contemporary pop art. Shibari themed art can even be found in the Louvre in Paris, in mainstream movies, and in pop star music videos. Kinbaku performances in night club settings and events can be found regularly in Japan and throughout the world.
In the modern BDSM community, Japanese style rope bondage has become extremely popular. There are international conferences and workshops in just about every city in the world, and an entire new army of rope bondage professionals touring the United States and the rest of the world to give presentations, workshops, and weekend long intensives. There are major conferences in US cities it seems almost every weekend somewhere. Most cities have monthly if not weekly workshops, events and parties where people come together to practice and play in the art of rope bondage and other BDSM activities. Perhaps the largest BDSM social media website, FetLife, is constantly overflowing with posting of people practicing shibari, as well as with event, conference and workshop postings.
While there is no scientific conclusion as to why Shibari has become so popular, we at RopeLab have our thoughts! In general, rope bondage is extremely versatile and has something for everyone. It can be extremely sensual and connective or mean and sadistic. It can be all of the above in the same scene. It can be used in a an artful live performance. It can be used in a simple bedroom bondage tie for sex. It can be used in ways that leather cuffs cannot as the potential to tie in many different ways given any situation is always there, even when there are no bed posts to tie to. Finally, rope bottoms love the way the rope binds them… they love the feel of the rope, the smell of the rope and often rope can take them into an extremely deep level of subspace--a "happy place" that they cannot easily reach in other ways.
And let's not forget suspensions! While this is an advanced technique that should only be attempted with proper training of both the top AND bottom, suspension work can add a whole new level of challenge and to a dynamic and can be extremely beneficial. It is very entertaining and fun to watch, and of course can add a whole new element of bondage and challenge to a BDSM scene that includes other elements, like sex, impact play or other erotic or sadistic play.
Of course erotic rope bondage does not have to just be used for the sake of doing rope bondage. While many people find satisfaction just from doing rope, rope, of course, as it traditionally was, can always still be used as a means to an end. For example, you might want to tie your partner to restrain them for sex, flogging, whipping, or other fun or sadistic play. Rope gives you a virtually endless stream of options. All you need is the consent of a willing bottom (or a rope minded top) and you are ready to go.
From a safety perspective, rope play has risks, including nerve damage, strains, or even broken bones. The risks increase exponentially when suspension play is involved. Please see our resources page for links to safety resources, but here are a few: Remedial Ropes Website and Peer FetLife page sticky. In general, however, you should not attempt any advanced rope play without proper training. In addition, as part of your training, both tops and bottoms should create a personal risk profile where you analyze the risk of your proposed activities and decide what level of risk you are comfortable with.
RopeLab has regular monthly meetings, as well as special events like workshops, weekend intensives, photo events, and travel events.
Monthly meetings: RopeLab monthly meetings are generally on the third Thursday or Sunday or each month. Thursday meetings generally consist of a short presentation on a specific topic, followed by "UPL" (Unconference, Play and Lab Time). UPL is a new concept that we created for rope group meetings. It is a combination of some of the best formats we have seen in other groups--we have taken the best and left the rest behind! UPL gives participants a chance to practice and play on their own or with others, teach an impromptu skill or workshop, or collaborate to invent new ties or improve old ones.
The basic concept of UPL is that during or after a workshop, participants are always free to learn, practice, play, experiment, and collaborate on their own. The High Point space is HUGE and there will always be plenty of hard points and space to spread out.
UPL stand for "Unconference + Play + Lab Time." The choice is yours! If the workshops look like your speed, attend one that is right for your skill level! Or perhaps you already know that harness and that knot, and you just want work on your munter-hojo-gote-gravity boot. Go for it! Or maybe you want to learn something specific? Just ask and maybe you will find a willing teacher.
Just got back from super-duper-rigger-con? Great? Share the new super fancy tie that you personally learned from the keynote speaker, Rigger-god-Master! Or maybe you just want to lab out that new harness and test some alternative ties. Great! grab some friends and work together to make it better. And when you do, be ready to teach it!
The bottom line is that RopeLab is YOURS. It is your time to learn, grow, improve, share, invent, practice, teach, collaborate, and PLAY!
Special Workshops and Intensives: RopeLab produces special workshops and weekend intensives taught by some of the top international rope experts and presenters.
Travel: RopeLab organizes travel events like BeachBind, a ropey, kinky vacation and rope conference at Headonism Resort in Jamaica.
Affiliated Events: RopeLab may make appearances at other events and will collaborate with other groups...stay tuned!
>Join the RopeLab FetLife Group to get up-to-date information and RSVP to events:
>Read the Event Rules and Waiver form here
>Please Send a friend reqeust to the RopeLab FetLife Profile