Ropes have long been an integral part of
BDSM in Western culture.
Much of what is practised today in terms of rope bondage,
has evolved in large part from Eastern culture, particularly Japan.
The first traces of ropes and bondage can already be found in ancient times.
In the Middle Ages, the rope was very often used in connection with torture.
In the 15th century, ropes were used by Japanese warriors,
to secure their captured enemies on the battlefield,
and from the 17th century onwards, ropes became common as restraints in law enforcement.
The forms used by the warriors and law enforcers became known as Hojojutsu,
It was recognised as a martial art (comparable to jujitsu or karate).
Many dojos derive their ryus and katas from it.
So if you're looking for a schooly rope system, you're in good hands there.
However, bondage can develop just as freely if you take the basic
concepts to heart.
Over the years, Hojojutsu faded from practice and is no longer widely practised.
However, it serves as the main influence for modern rope bondage,
which is practiced in both the East and the West.
The two main modern forms are called
Shibari and Kinbaku.
The word "Shibari" in Japanese originally means "tying up a person".
and was not used in the context of erotic bondage.
Western culture adopted the word and applied it to erotic bondage in particular,
giving it its current meaning.
Kinbaku is a Japanese verb meaning "to bind tightly",
and the meaning has remained relatively the same in Western usage.
There is no exact date when the West began to adopt these practices from Japan.
It is assumed that it came to the USA with Eric Stanton after
the Second World War,
and then to Europe.
Again and again there are discussions about the differences between the two forms,
because each person who practices it does it in a slightly different way.
Think of semenawa(torture rope), which is being taught acutely in many courses right now.
Shibari and Kinbaku are considered erotic, but they achieve this in slightly different ways.
The best known difference is that shibari achieves its erotic nature
by the actual beauty of the rope and the teaching behind it.
The focus is on the aesthetics of the rope and only then on the functionality of the restraints.
Again, this is seen differently by each person who is tied up.