Wartenberg WheelThe Wartenberg Wheel was created to test nerve sensitivity in patients who might have brain damage.  If your toes curled in one direction or another or not at all as the spikey little pinwheel rolled across the bottom of your foot, the examinier could discern what might be going on with your body.  It didn’t take very long at all for tailors, hedonists, sadists, and sensualists of various persuasions to arm themselves with this very same tool.

Will a Wartenberg Wheel draw blood?  Yes.  Those spikes are real and really sharp, so be careful.  Used while applying enough pressure, the little dots resulting on the flesh will fill with blood, and your partner will struggle just a tad (or more) more than they did before.  The wheel is made from metal though, and can be cleaned and sanitized using various methods including boiling – try the dishwasher, though be careful or wear a few thimbles when reaching into your silverware rack.

Artistic Flair:  The Wartenberg Wheel is a great tool to add to the bag of someone who enjoys scratch marks, knife play, rope, and other temporary marking devices.  Remember that skin that’s been bound tightly is going to mark more readily and be more sensitive than skin that is loose from any tension.  Find out which parts mark most easily, and which refuse to leave a spot.  Play with your little ant trails and turn your bottom into a masterpiece of Pointalistic design…

Wartenberg Marks ThighBe thoughtful:  This little instrument might seem like a no brainer, but think and be careful before using it.  Talk to your partner about areas of their body they would NOT like you to drag it across.  Think about the anatomy of nerve endings and where they surface the most or are clustered, are parts of the body more ticklish or tough, what does the pace do to sensation, what types of reactions are you looking for in your partner when you drag it out?…  Play with the tool slowly and carefully at first and then start to branch out and experiment.  You might find out that playing the scientist and watching your partner’s parts respond is endlessly fascinating as your patient begs you to (without safe-wording) “please please please stop/slow down/ahhhhhhrrrgg!”.

The little manual toy that really packs a favorite punch:  I LOVE my Wartenberg Wheel, as have various partners of mine (some maybe a little too much).  Those little teeth can tickle, unnerve, hurt, make me scream or shift uncomfortably in my seat, and they’ll scratch that itch perfectly every time!  What a wonderful gadget, and it is incredibly easy to use…  My favorite (or least favorite depending on how you look at it) experience with the wheel was when a partner of mine used it on my knees.  I have the overly sensitive kneecaps of a dancer and even managed to shatter one of them a number of years ago.  If there is an awful shimmery nerve rich part of my body that I’d like to have sharp objects stay away from, my right knee is at the top of the list…  So, of course, this is the favorite part of my body for the little wheel to explore when wielded by my sadistic partner.  Excruciating.  Yet, I live on…  A partner of mine also becomes a little kid when playing with this object, which I find fun, curious, and divine.  I can watch this partner trace up and down my body, make pictures in my skin, watch me react and writhe, with this beautifully attentive smile that is so innocent and sweet it makes me enjoy the journey all the more.  Like running a toy car all over my body, this meditation in rolling a thing over my curves and exploring all the surfaces to be found is a night of youthful smiles, and explorative awe.  I feel chosen in these moments; blessed to offer my body for the lesson.

Keep in mind:  That the Wartenberg Wheel will poke holes in everything.  You might want to consider keeping it in a hard case rather than wrapped in cloth, paper, or something else that will be shredded and poked through in time.  Also consider what you pack it with – your glass toys will be just fine next to the little metal devil, but your nice silicone doesn’t stand a chance, and keep it as far away from condoms/diaphragms/dams/gloves/lube pillows and other contraceptive supplies as you possibly can.

So, here’s to tiny little pokey things that make us both giggle and squeal; I hope you have fun playing with the simple and delightful Wartenberg Wheel!

To Breath and Being,
~ Karin

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~Thank you.


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