Pretty captivating: Rigger or Rope Top

Author: Lynn
A to Z | Roles


What does “Rigger” or “Rope Top” mean?

A “Rigger” or “Rope Top” is the active part in rope bondage who ties one or another person consensually and taking safety risks into account. The term refers to a profession in the maritime industry. Riggers manufacture and maintain the entire so-called rigging of sailing ships, i.e. the masts and ropes. The alternative name Rope Top is made up to show also the status of a Top, i.e. a person who plays “on top” within a BDSM activity.

Fans of bondage art and shibari in particular are characterized by security and patience in their bondage technique. In contrast to Rope Tops, Riggers are not necessarily dominant people, but simply derive pleasure from the restraints and their aesthetics. Unlike Rope Tops, riggers don’t necessarily need a sexual context to play with ropes or enjoy the elaborate lacing. In this context they are sometimes referred to as “Service Top”.

What roles is a Rigger or Rope Top related to?

As an active part, the overlap is mainly with upper-level roles that have an interest in rope bondage, such as many Doms, Daddy/Mommy, Master/Mistress, Sadists, Brat Tamers, and Spankers.

Who matches with a Rigger or Rope Top?

Ideally a person who likes to be tied up, also known as a “Bunny” or “Rope Bottom”. Many submissives find playing with the bonds appealing, so it doesn’t necessarily have to be a professional Bunny or model. Many Subs, Serfs, Bottoms or even Brats with an interest in this type of play are suitable as submissive partners.

How do I know if I am a Rope Top or Rigger?

Can’t keep your eyes off ropes? Is bondage mandatory in the porn stream? Does Japanese knot art have something calming or meditative for you? With the Rope Top, the whole thing goes a little further: Does it kick you when your partner is unable to move? Without ropes or restraints, you might be missing something? Then you’ll know.

As a Rigger or Rope Top, it is important that…

…you inform yourself sufficiently about the different techniques, body parts and safety risks and approach them slowly. The magic word is patience. Immediately after that comes practice, practice, practice. Ropes that are too tight or tied incorrectly can not only ruin a session if it becomes uncomfortable, but can also cause permanent nerve damage or even strangulation. Even experienced riggers should first practice new techniques and knots. Fortunately, there is a lot of teaching material for beginners and advanced users in the form of books, online courses or YouTube channels on the subject of shibari.

During a rope session itself, the tied person must never be left alone. Quite the opposite: Instead, their condition must be monitored through sensitive communication and their sensitivity, motor skills and skin color observed. In addition, safety scissors should always be available.

Also clarify the framework conditions with the person to be captivated, such as limits, safewords and the framework of consent.

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