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A spreader bar is a type of bondage equipment that is used to spread and hold a person's knees or arms apart. This type of sex toy is popular in the BDSM community. It typically consists of wood, metal, or plastic bars or rods. Some spreader bars may have built-in cuffs or attachment points on each end. In sex play, one partner's wrists, ankle, arms, or legs can be attached to the ends of a spreader bar, either with built in cuffs or rope. Spreader bars are designed to be restrictive as well as to create a sense of vulnerability, which one or both partners may find erotic.
A spreader bar may also be called a bondage bar.
Spreaders bars are nothing new, but sales of this sex toy soared after it was featured in "Fifty Shades of Grey." This type of restraint creates more complete sexual submission than other types of restraints because it's often used to keep one partner's legs apart, allowing the other free access, both physical and visual. Spreader bars can also be used to restrain one partner's arms. It presents opportunities to create a number of different sex positions, including suspended ones.
Because a spreader bar is a hard restraint, caution must be used to ensure that participants don't suffer muscle strains or bruising.