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A testicle cuff is a ring-shaped device around the scrotum between the body and the testicles such that when closed it does not allow the testicles to pass through it. A common type has two connected cuffs; one for the scrotum and one for the base of the penis. They are one of many different gadgets for restraining the male genitalia. Also a standard padlock may be locked around the scrotum, and without the key the man will not be able to remove it. This is known as a ball lock.
The choice to have oneself restrained about a sensitive area such as the testicles may stem from several sexual desires. Testicle cuffs can be part of cock and ball torture and other parts of the BDSM culture.
Some men enjoy the feeling of being 'owned', and some people enjoy the feeling of 'owning' their partners. Making the man wear testicle cuffs gives a sense that his sexual organs belong to his partner. Equally, there is a certain level of humiliation inherent in the devices, by which some people are sexually aroused. Finally, the cuffs may form part of a sexual fetish of the wearer or his partner.
Using testicle cuffs can prove extremely painful, even dangerous as they restrict the movements of the scrotum that would usually protect the testicles in case of trauma to the area. Cuffs can cause the skin around this area to become sore if worn for prolonged periods (longer than a few hours). With time, even soft and/or fluffy cuffs can cut into the scrotum if applied too tightly, possibly even causing damage to the testicles or spermatic cords themselves.
It should not need to be stated that attempting to hang or otherwise restrain people by such devices could cause rather serious internal injuries. Even so, scrotal suspension (see http://wiki.bmezine.com/index.php/Suspension) is a possibility for those willing to endure the intensity and possible damage resulting from such feats.
All the dangers associated with physical restraint apply to the use of testicle cuffs. See also safe, sane and consensual.
Hardy Haberman, Fetish Diva Midori. The Family Jewels: A Guide to Male Genital Play and Torment. Greenery Press, 2001. ISBN 1-890159-34-4.