Back corporal punishment
Corporal punishment, especially of adults in former centuries, was often given on the delinquent's back rather than his/her buttocks. This kind of CP was given, for example, on whipping posts. It made the majority of judicial, prison, ship, military etc. CP of adults.
Back corporal punishment in BDSM
Many BDSM practitioners enjoy back CP, usually given with lightweight whips such as a flogger. A typical position for back CP in BDSM is standing tied to a St. Andrews Cross or a similar construction (see also bondage).
Back corporal punishment comes with greater health risks than spanking because of the spine that runs along the middle of the back. If the spine is hit by a blow, very serious damage is likely. This risk is particularly great if a hard implement such as a cane is used. Heavyweight implements made of wood, such as paddles, are not at all suitable for the back which (unlike the fat and muscular buttocks) can not absorb such an impact.
Only the muscular parts of the back that run parallel to the spine at a hand's width distance are safe for flogging. The sides of the back and the kidney area should never be hit.
While spankophiles find spanking a bottom (and/or getting their bottoms spanked) fun and/or erotic, they usually don't particularly like CP given on the back. People who like back CP are usually called flagellants.
Back corporal punishment in art
Back corporal punishment is the kind of CP most often found in art because a) it was not considered as embarassing as spanking and therefore a more appropriate topic for art, b) because a flogging was part of the passion of Christ and therefore portrayed by many artists in works of religious art.
The number of paintings that show the flagellation of Christ are innumerable and greatly exceed all other flagellation artwork.
Spanking and the spankee's back
Caressing the back
Many spankees like to get their back rubbed, massaged or otherwise caressed in the breaks during a spanking session, especially in erotic spanking with a partner they love. This can serve different purposes, for example:
- any kind of touch: to increase body awareness
- gentle rubbing, massaging: to comfort
- light running the fingers up and down, possibly using the fingernails: to tease or to "wake up"
In most spanking positions the spankee is facing down, so his/her back is positioned on top, horizontally, and in easy reach to do so.
Holding down by the back
It is also common to hold down a squirming spankee by pressing down his/her back with the non-spanking hand and/or forearm, e.g. in a lying position or OTK position. A popular place for this grip is the upper back (just below the neck, between the shoulderblades), but the grip can also be applied at the middle or lower back (close to the bottom), whatever seems best suited.
If a spankee tries to block the spanks with his/her hand, it is a common method to pin down the spankee's hand at the small of the back and hold it there firmly by the wrist, while the spanking is continued. Alternatively, both hands can be bound together at the back with rope, handcuffs, a strap, or a fabric belt (e.g. a soft terrycloth belt from a bathrobe). If you do so, be careful the spankee's breathing can not get blocked by a blanket, pillow, or the mattress.
In items of spanking furniture such as a spanking bench or a birching horse, there is also often a strap that goes around the spankee's back (usually at the waist) to restrain any movement that could move the buttocks away from the defined spanking position.