Confession time: even though I take my bondage very seriously I do not currently have the money to purchase an expensive set-up for restraining my partner or myself during sex. Good Vibrations saved the day for me when they sent us the Sportsheets Under the Bed Restraint System for review. This was designed for those of us who would like to experience spread eagle style bondage without the hassle, commitment, or expense of building a fully operational sex dungeon.
The UBRS is pretty simple in design. It is just a tangled up, H-shaped, polypropylene (or “backpack strap material” as my friend Epiphora calls it) webbing with nickel-free metal hardware that is meant to be placed under a mattress for quick and easy bondage. Once positioned correctly there are four straps that stick up from the edges of the bed to which one can attach the included wrist and ankle cuffs.
The webbing can be adjusted to fit any bed by using the plastic buckles. Each individual strap, including the one in the middle of the H that connects the other four, is about 60 inches at its maximum length and very flexible to accommodate many mattress sizes and shapes. The Under the Bed Restraint System has fit and performed well on every bed I have tried it on so far. I have not personally been able to test this out on a king sized bed, but I am certain that it would work with one because the straps are quite long; I had plenty of extra length when using it on a queen.
You do not need a bed frame or any other fancy set-up to use the UBRS, so it could easily work on most large, sturdy, pieces of furniture. I was able to use this set to restrain my partner to the couch and our large love seat. Maybe you have a big, sturdy, coffee table that you have always wanted to strap somebody down to? It would probably work on that too. Even when I tried using it under two futon mattresses pushed up next to each other on the floor this set never failed to serve its purpose.
Ease of installation will depend almost entirely on the furnishings you choose to use the restraints on. If your mattress weighs a ton, or if you own a waterbed, then it may be more difficult to get the straps into place than if you slept on a lightweight bed or a futon. It only took me about two minutes to set up the UBRS in my own bedroom. This set is portable and great for traveling because it can be quickly set up and used in guest rooms, hotels, and just about anywhere else you can imagine. It takes up less space in my travel bag than a pair of jeans, so I take it with me whenever I stay the night at my partner’s place.
Depending on your preferences you can adjust the straps to extend far onto the bed to allow space to move around or they can rest tightly against the edge for a more tied-down feeling. I personally like to have my wrist straps tight while giving my legs more wiggle room to make positioning easier. So, I really like the fact that each individual strap can be adjusted independently from one another. The only thing I really dislike about this set is that unless the straps are really, really tight they can migrate along the sides of the bed (or whatever piece of furniture) and shift around a lot during use which can be a pain in the ass to fix.
Storage is as easy as sticking the extra straps and cuffs under your mattress when not in use. If this is not a feasible option for whatever reason- maybe you have kids that like to hide under your bed- it can also be thrown in a toy box without much hassle. Using rubber bands can help keep the straps from getting tangled up. I like to hook all of the cuffs to an O-ring so they are always together, but I could just as easily leave them attached to the webbing if I never planned on using them apart from the rest of the kit.
The four identical cuffs that come with the system are not made from the highest quality materials, but they are not the worst I have ever seen either (*cough* Fetish Fantasy. *cough*) They are made from velvety soft valboa fabric and have Velcro sewn in for fastening the cuffs together. Each cuff has a claw style swivel clasp for attaching them to the rest of the restraint system. This is sort of neat because if you have an extra O-ring and or tethers lying around you could easily turn the cuffs into a makeshift hog-tie kit. You could also join two cuffs together to make a regular pair of handcuffs to use separately. I found them to be comfortable for short periods of time, but they tend to get irritating and chafe after long-term use. If you have particularly sensitive skin these may not be the cuffs for you.
This set is pretty easy to escape from, which I do not particularly like, but that may be a good thing for people who want a less extreme bondage experience. This is not to say that the cuffs will come undone before you want them to. I like to wriggle and thrash around a lot when I am restrained, and the cuffs do not come off unless I intentionally undo the straps. Just the feeling of being tied down can be arousing on its own if you can forget that you are a only a Velcro strip away from freedom.
Of course, there is nothing that says you have to use the included cuffs to enjoy the Under the Bed Restraint System. You could theoretically use any pair of restraints you want (with the right equipment.) Although the cuffs are fairly adjustable they may not fit well for everybody. Because I have tiny wrists I can not get them tight enough to stay on by myself, and I have to get my partner to help me with them. Since they don’t work great for me I will eventually be replacing the cuffs when I have some extra cash.
I had to contact the manufacturer in order to find out how to clean the Under the Bed Restraint System as there were no instructions included as to how to wash them properly. The representatives at Sportsheets told me that the polypropylene webbing is safe to throw in the washing machine; they recommend regular warm water (non-chlorine to protect the metal) and a regular dry cycle. As for the cuffs I was also told to only follow dry clean procedure “to avoid damaging the combine material.” If you are like me, you probably don’t have the time or energy to take your freaking wrist and ankle restraints to the dry cleaners. I threw mine in the washing machine with the rest of my set. The cuffs look fine. I have no regrets.
The truth is that there are better kits on the market. You could easily pay a little extra and buy a set of under the bed restraints made with stainless steel hardware and leather cuffs instead of going for this Velcro and split keyring shit. On the other hand, the Sportsheets Under the Bed Restraint System is far better than some of the cheaper restraint systems made by their competitors. So, although I do think the UBRS is a little over-priced for what it is, it at least functions in all the ways it is supposed to. If you already know that you will eventually want to upgrade to a better set then I would suggest spending a little more up front and purchasing one that will serve you better long-term such as the Bedspreader by Leatherbeaten. Otherwise, this is a decent kit. I use mine frequently, and I often recommend it to friends of mine who are also interested in bondage.
You can buy the Under the Bed Restraint System from Good Vibrations HERE.
Good Vibrations sent me the Under the Bed Restraint System in exchange for my honest review.
Thank you Good Vibes! All my love and dildos.