Frequently Asked Questions

Suspension.org is a website for those interested in the art and technical aspects of body suspension and the responsible disseminationof information pertaining to such. It is not designed to encourage people to attempt any dangerous activities.
The act of suspension is hanging the human body from (or partially from) hooks pierced through the flesh in various places around the body.
There are many different reasons to suspend, from pure adrenaline or endorphin rush, to conquering ones fears, to trying to reach a new level of spiritual consciousness and everything in between. In general, people suspend to attain some sort of “experience”.
Some people are seeking the opportunity to discover a deeper sense of themselves and to challenge pre-determined belief systems which may not be true. Some are seeking a rite of passage or a spiritual encounter to let go of the fear of not being whole or complete inside their body.
Others are looking for control over their body, or seek to prove to themselves that they are more than their bodies, or are not their bodies at all. Others simply seek to explore the unknown.
Old FAQ
This FAQ was originally compiled by and copyright (c) 2002 BMEZINE.COM Inc. For more on suspension and other ritual, visit http://www.bmezine.com/
Please note that this is/was an entirely preliminary version of this FAQ. As of July 2009, a team of people has begun rewritting the FAQ. If you would like to help please drop an email to isa@suspension.org
Version: 0.01
Date: 01-15-2002

INTRODUCTION

You will need to erect some form of stable structure. One of the fastest and most stable boxes can be built from scaffolding that is easily rented in any major city. Although there have been a lot of people designing freestanding suspension frames, it really seems at this point that scaffolding is the cheapest, easiest, and safest way to do it.

Trees are simple in that slings can easily be wrapped around large branches. Once the slings are in place, a block and tackle or hoist can be easily attached.

Connect your rigging to one or more solid points of the building’s superstructure, for example by placing a sling around an I-beam or by setting permanent points in wood or concrete buildings. As always, it is best to rig for at least three times the amount of weight you are expecting to hold.

First connect one rope to a solid structure (such as a ceiling beam or a tree branch). To that, connect the suspension frame/rig at height where the suspendee will be off the ground, but is low enough that they can step off a chair or a table beneath them can be lowered. When the suspension is over, they step back onto the chair.

Horizontal suspensions are normally done from a rectangular cube with multiple eyebolts facing downwards on the long sides of the frame and four eyebolts facing up in the corners. A single long bar design can be used as well for horizontal suspensions. Vertical suspensions are normally one from a single beam with five eyebolts facing down and two eyebolts facing up.

The two most common lifting mechanisms are “block and tackle” and “chain hoists”. Block and tackle pulley systems have the advantage of being lightweight and are quick for lifting and lowering. The only drawback is that they require a physical point to secure the rope’s end. These days, chain hoists are becoming more and more popular due to their self locking system that handles and enormous amount of weight.

There are multiple knots that work well for suspension rigging. The two most common knots are figure eights and clove hitches. The figure eight knot is probably the most common knot, and is used both for primary and suspension rigging. It is an extremely strong knot, tightens down upon itself and is very easy to untie. The clove hitch is an easily adjustable knot that is often used where the length of the ropes must be adjusted, such as suspensions that require multiple balanced rigging systems.

There are many different types of rope, webbing, chain and cable that can be used for suspension. In general, most suspension groups work with the same materials that are used by climbers and professional riggers. The most common of these are nylon webbing (for attaching to support structures), rappelling rope (for connecting support structures to suspension frames) and parachute line (to connect the body to the suspension frame).

STYLES OF SUSPENSIONS

You will need to erect some form of stable structure. One of the fastest and most stable boxes can be built from scaffolding that is easily rented in any major city. Although there have been a lot of people designing freestanding suspension frames, it really seems at this point that scaffolding is the cheapest, easiest, and safest way to do it.

Trees are simple in that slings can easily be wrapped around large branches. Once the slings are in place, a block and tackle or hoist can be easily attached.

Connect your rigging to one or more solid points of the building’s superstructure, for example by placing a sling around an I-beam or by setting permanent points in wood or concrete buildings. As always, it is best to rig for at least three times the amount of weight you are expecting to hold.

First connect one rope to a solid structure (such as a ceiling beam or a tree branch). To that, connect the suspension frame/rig at height where the suspendee will be off the ground, but is low enough that they can step off a chair or a table beneath them can be lowered. When the suspension is over, they step back onto the chair.

Horizontal suspensions are normally done from a rectangular cube with multiple eyebolts facing downwards on the long sides of the frame and four eyebolts facing up in the corners. A single long bar design can be used as well for horizontal suspensions. Vertical suspensions are normally one from a single beam with five eyebolts facing down and two eyebolts facing up.

The two most common lifting mechanisms are “block and tackle” and “chain hoists”. Block and tackle pulley systems have the advantage of being lightweight and are quick for lifting and lowering. The only drawback is that they require a physical point to secure the rope’s end. These days, chain hoists are becoming more and more popular due to their self locking system that handles and enormous amount of weight.

There are multiple knots that work well for suspension rigging. The two most common knots are figure eights and clove hitches. The figure eight knot is probably the most common knot, and is used both for primary and suspension rigging. It is an extremely strong knot, tightens down upon itself and is very easy to untie. The clove hitch is an easily adjustable knot that is often used where the length of the ropes must be adjusted, such as suspensions that require multiple balanced rigging systems.

There are many different types of rope, webbing, chain and cable that can be used for suspension. In general, most suspension groups work with the same materials that are used by climbers and professional riggers. The most common of these are nylon webbing (for attaching to support structures), rappelling rope (for connecting support structures to suspension frames) and parachute line (to connect the body to the suspension frame).

HISTORICAL CONTEXT

You will need to erect some form of stable structure. One of the fastest and most stable boxes can be built from scaffolding that is easily rented in any major city. Although there have been a lot of people designing freestanding suspension frames, it really seems at this point that scaffolding is the cheapest, easiest, and safest way to do it.

Trees are simple in that slings can easily be wrapped around large branches. Once the slings are in place, a block and tackle or hoist can be easily attached.

Connect your rigging to one or more solid points of the building’s superstructure, for example by placing a sling around an I-beam or by setting permanent points in wood or concrete buildings. As always, it is best to rig for at least three times the amount of weight you are expecting to hold.

First connect one rope to a solid structure (such as a ceiling beam or a tree branch). To that, connect the suspension frame/rig at height where the suspendee will be off the ground, but is low enough that they can step off a chair or a table beneath them can be lowered. When the suspension is over, they step back onto the chair.

Horizontal suspensions are normally done from a rectangular cube with multiple eyebolts facing downwards on the long sides of the frame and four eyebolts facing up in the corners. A single long bar design can be used as well for horizontal suspensions. Vertical suspensions are normally one from a single beam with five eyebolts facing down and two eyebolts facing up.

The two most common lifting mechanisms are “block and tackle” and “chain hoists”. Block and tackle pulley systems have the advantage of being lightweight and are quick for lifting and lowering. The only drawback is that they require a physical point to secure the rope’s end. These days, chain hoists are becoming more and more popular due to their self locking system that handles and enormous amount of weight.

There are multiple knots that work well for suspension rigging. The two most common knots are figure eights and clove hitches. The figure eight knot is probably the most common knot, and is used both for primary and suspension rigging. It is an extremely strong knot, tightens down upon itself and is very easy to untie. The clove hitch is an easily adjustable knot that is often used where the length of the ropes must be adjusted, such as suspensions that require multiple balanced rigging systems.

There are many different types of rope, webbing, chain and cable that can be used for suspension. In general, most suspension groups work with the same materials that are used by climbers and professional riggers. The most common of these are nylon webbing (for attaching to support structures), rappelling rope (for connecting support structures to suspension frames) and parachute line (to connect the body to the suspension frame).

HOOKS AND THEIR APPLICATION

You will need to erect some form of stable structure. One of the fastest and most stable boxes can be built from scaffolding that is easily rented in any major city. Although there have been a lot of people designing freestanding suspension frames, it really seems at this point that scaffolding is the cheapest, easiest, and safest way to do it.

Trees are simple in that slings can easily be wrapped around large branches. Once the slings are in place, a block and tackle or hoist can be easily attached.

Connect your rigging to one or more solid points of the building’s superstructure, for example by placing a sling around an I-beam or by setting permanent points in wood or concrete buildings. As always, it is best to rig for at least three times the amount of weight you are expecting to hold.

First connect one rope to a solid structure (such as a ceiling beam or a tree branch). To that, connect the suspension frame/rig at height where the suspendee will be off the ground, but is low enough that they can step off a chair or a table beneath them can be lowered. When the suspension is over, they step back onto the chair.

Horizontal suspensions are normally done from a rectangular cube with multiple eyebolts facing downwards on the long sides of the frame and four eyebolts facing up in the corners. A single long bar design can be used as well for horizontal suspensions. Vertical suspensions are normally one from a single beam with five eyebolts facing down and two eyebolts facing up.

The two most common lifting mechanisms are “block and tackle” and “chain hoists”. Block and tackle pulley systems have the advantage of being lightweight and are quick for lifting and lowering. The only drawback is that they require a physical point to secure the rope’s end. These days, chain hoists are becoming more and more popular due to their self locking system that handles and enormous amount of weight.

There are multiple knots that work well for suspension rigging. The two most common knots are figure eights and clove hitches. The figure eight knot is probably the most common knot, and is used both for primary and suspension rigging. It is an extremely strong knot, tightens down upon itself and is very easy to untie. The clove hitch is an easily adjustable knot that is often used where the length of the ropes must be adjusted, such as suspensions that require multiple balanced rigging systems.

There are many different types of rope, webbing, chain and cable that can be used for suspension. In general, most suspension groups work with the same materials that are used by climbers and professional riggers. The most common of these are nylon webbing (for attaching to support structures), rappelling rope (for connecting support structures to suspension frames) and parachute line (to connect the body to the suspension frame).

ROPES AND RIGGING

You will need to erect some form of stable structure. One of the fastest and most stable boxes can be built from scaffolding that is easily rented in any major city. Although there have been a lot of people designing freestanding suspension frames, it really seems at this point that scaffolding is the cheapest, easiest, and safest way to do it.

Trees are simple in that slings can easily be wrapped around large branches. Once the slings are in place, a block and tackle or hoist can be easily attached.

Connect your rigging to one or more solid points of the building’s superstructure, for example by placing a sling around an I-beam or by setting permanent points in wood or concrete buildings. As always, it is best to rig for at least three times the amount of weight you are expecting to hold.

First connect one rope to a solid structure (such as a ceiling beam or a tree branch). To that, connect the suspension frame/rig at height where the suspendee will be off the ground, but is low enough that they can step off a chair or a table beneath them can be lowered. When the suspension is over, they step back onto the chair.

Horizontal suspensions are normally done from a rectangular cube with multiple eyebolts facing downwards on the long sides of the frame and four eyebolts facing up in the corners. A single long bar design can be used as well for horizontal suspensions. Vertical suspensions are normally one from a single beam with five eyebolts facing down and two eyebolts facing up.

The two most common lifting mechanisms are “block and tackle” and “chain hoists”. Block and tackle pulley systems have the advantage of being lightweight and are quick for lifting and lowering. The only drawback is that they require a physical point to secure the rope’s end. These days, chain hoists are becoming more and more popular due to their self locking system that handles and enormous amount of weight.

There are multiple knots that work well for suspension rigging. The two most common knots are figure eights and clove hitches. The figure eight knot is probably the most common knot, and is used both for primary and suspension rigging. It is an extremely strong knot, tightens down upon itself and is very easy to untie. The clove hitch is an easily adjustable knot that is often used where the length of the ropes must be adjusted, such as suspensions that require multiple balanced rigging systems.

There are many different types of rope, webbing, chain and cable that can be used for suspension. In general, most suspension groups work with the same materials that are used by climbers and professional riggers. The most common of these are nylon webbing (for attaching to support structures), rappelling rope (for connecting support structures to suspension frames) and parachute line (to connect the body to the suspension frame).

PREPARATION AND AFTERCARE: MENTAL, PHYSICAL, SPIRITUAL

You will need to erect some form of stable structure. One of the fastest and most stable boxes can be built from scaffolding that is easily rented in any major city. Although there have been a lot of people designing freestanding suspension frames, it really seems at this point that scaffolding is the cheapest, easiest, and safest way to do it.

Trees are simple in that slings can easily be wrapped around large branches. Once the slings are in place, a block and tackle or hoist can be easily attached.

Connect your rigging to one or more solid points of the building’s superstructure, for example by placing a sling around an I-beam or by setting permanent points in wood or concrete buildings. As always, it is best to rig for at least three times the amount of weight you are expecting to hold.

First connect one rope to a solid structure (such as a ceiling beam or a tree branch). To that, connect the suspension frame/rig at height where the suspendee will be off the ground, but is low enough that they can step off a chair or a table beneath them can be lowered. When the suspension is over, they step back onto the chair.

Horizontal suspensions are normally done from a rectangular cube with multiple eyebolts facing downwards on the long sides of the frame and four eyebolts facing up in the corners. A single long bar design can be used as well for horizontal suspensions. Vertical suspensions are normally one from a single beam with five eyebolts facing down and two eyebolts facing up.

The two most common lifting mechanisms are “block and tackle” and “chain hoists”. Block and tackle pulley systems have the advantage of being lightweight and are quick for lifting and lowering. The only drawback is that they require a physical point to secure the rope’s end. These days, chain hoists are becoming more and more popular due to their self locking system that handles and enormous amount of weight.

There are multiple knots that work well for suspension rigging. The two most common knots are figure eights and clove hitches. The figure eight knot is probably the most common knot, and is used both for primary and suspension rigging. It is an extremely strong knot, tightens down upon itself and is very easy to untie. The clove hitch is an easily adjustable knot that is often used where the length of the ropes must be adjusted, such as suspensions that require multiple balanced rigging systems.

There are many different types of rope, webbing, chain and cable that can be used for suspension. In general, most suspension groups work with the same materials that are used by climbers and professional riggers. The most common of these are nylon webbing (for attaching to support structures), rappelling rope (for connecting support structures to suspension frames) and parachute line (to connect the body to the suspension frame).

RISKS AND SAFETY

You will need to erect some form of stable structure. One of the fastest and most stable boxes can be built from scaffolding that is easily rented in any major city. Although there have been a lot of people designing freestanding suspension frames, it really seems at this point that scaffolding is the cheapest, easiest, and safest way to do it.

Trees are simple in that slings can easily be wrapped around large branches. Once the slings are in place, a block and tackle or hoist can be easily attached.

Connect your rigging to one or more solid points of the building’s superstructure, for example by placing a sling around an I-beam or by setting permanent points in wood or concrete buildings. As always, it is best to rig for at least three times the amount of weight you are expecting to hold.

First connect one rope to a solid structure (such as a ceiling beam or a tree branch). To that, connect the suspension frame/rig at height where the suspendee will be off the ground, but is low enough that they can step off a chair or a table beneath them can be lowered. When the suspension is over, they step back onto the chair.

Horizontal suspensions are normally done from a rectangular cube with multiple eyebolts facing downwards on the long sides of the frame and four eyebolts facing up in the corners. A single long bar design can be used as well for horizontal suspensions. Vertical suspensions are normally one from a single beam with five eyebolts facing down and two eyebolts facing up.

The two most common lifting mechanisms are “block and tackle” and “chain hoists”. Block and tackle pulley systems have the advantage of being lightweight and are quick for lifting and lowering. The only drawback is that they require a physical point to secure the rope’s end. These days, chain hoists are becoming more and more popular due to their self locking system that handles and enormous amount of weight.

There are multiple knots that work well for suspension rigging. The two most common knots are figure eights and clove hitches. The figure eight knot is probably the most common knot, and is used both for primary and suspension rigging. It is an extremely strong knot, tightens down upon itself and is very easy to untie. The clove hitch is an easily adjustable knot that is often used where the length of the ropes must be adjusted, such as suspensions that require multiple balanced rigging systems.

There are many different types of rope, webbing, chain and cable that can be used for suspension. In general, most suspension groups work with the same materials that are used by climbers and professional riggers. The most common of these are nylon webbing (for attaching to support structures), rappelling rope (for connecting support structures to suspension frames) and parachute line (to connect the body to the suspension frame).

MISCELLANEOUS QUESTIONS

You will need to erect some form of stable structure. One of the fastest and most stable boxes can be built from scaffolding that is easily rented in any major city. Although there have been a lot of people designing freestanding suspension frames, it really seems at this point that scaffolding is the cheapest, easiest, and safest way to do it.

Trees are simple in that slings can easily be wrapped around large branches. Once the slings are in place, a block and tackle or hoist can be easily attached.

Connect your rigging to one or more solid points of the building’s superstructure, for example by placing a sling around an I-beam or by setting permanent points in wood or concrete buildings. As always, it is best to rig for at least three times the amount of weight you are expecting to hold.

First connect one rope to a solid structure (such as a ceiling beam or a tree branch). To that, connect the suspension frame/rig at height where the suspendee will be off the ground, but is low enough that they can step off a chair or a table beneath them can be lowered. When the suspension is over, they step back onto the chair.

Horizontal suspensions are normally done from a rectangular cube with multiple eyebolts facing downwards on the long sides of the frame and four eyebolts facing up in the corners. A single long bar design can be used as well for horizontal suspensions. Vertical suspensions are normally one from a single beam with five eyebolts facing down and two eyebolts facing up.

The two most common lifting mechanisms are “block and tackle” and “chain hoists”. Block and tackle pulley systems have the advantage of being lightweight and are quick for lifting and lowering. The only drawback is that they require a physical point to secure the rope’s end. These days, chain hoists are becoming more and more popular due to their self locking system that handles and enormous amount of weight.

There are multiple knots that work well for suspension rigging. The two most common knots are figure eights and clove hitches. The figure eight knot is probably the most common knot, and is used both for primary and suspension rigging. It is an extremely strong knot, tightens down upon itself and is very easy to untie. The clove hitch is an easily adjustable knot that is often used where the length of the ropes must be adjusted, such as suspensions that require multiple balanced rigging systems.

There are many different types of rope, webbing, chain and cable that can be used for suspension. In general, most suspension groups work with the same materials that are used by climbers and professional riggers. The most common of these are nylon webbing (for attaching to support structures), rappelling rope (for connecting support structures to suspension frames) and parachute line (to connect the body to the suspension frame).

PULLING

You will need to erect some form of stable structure. One of the fastest and most stable boxes can be built from scaffolding that is easily rented in any major city. Although there have been a lot of people designing freestanding suspension frames, it really seems at this point that scaffolding is the cheapest, easiest, and safest way to do it.

Trees are simple in that slings can easily be wrapped around large branches. Once the slings are in place, a block and tackle or hoist can be easily attached.

Connect your rigging to one or more solid points of the building’s superstructure, for example by placing a sling around an I-beam or by setting permanent points in wood or concrete buildings. As always, it is best to rig for at least three times the amount of weight you are expecting to hold.

First connect one rope to a solid structure (such as a ceiling beam or a tree branch). To that, connect the suspension frame/rig at height where the suspendee will be off the ground, but is low enough that they can step off a chair or a table beneath them can be lowered. When the suspension is over, they step back onto the chair.

Horizontal suspensions are normally done from a rectangular cube with multiple eyebolts facing downwards on the long sides of the frame and four eyebolts facing up in the corners. A single long bar design can be used as well for horizontal suspensions. Vertical suspensions are normally one from a single beam with five eyebolts facing down and two eyebolts facing up.

The two most common lifting mechanisms are “block and tackle” and “chain hoists”. Block and tackle pulley systems have the advantage of being lightweight and are quick for lifting and lowering. The only drawback is that they require a physical point to secure the rope’s end. These days, chain hoists are becoming more and more popular due to their self locking system that handles and enormous amount of weight.

There are multiple knots that work well for suspension rigging. The two most common knots are figure eights and clove hitches. The figure eight knot is probably the most common knot, and is used both for primary and suspension rigging. It is an extremely strong knot, tightens down upon itself and is very easy to untie. The clove hitch is an easily adjustable knot that is often used where the length of the ropes must be adjusted, such as suspensions that require multiple balanced rigging systems.

There are many different types of rope, webbing, chain and cable that can be used for suspension. In general, most suspension groups work with the same materials that are used by climbers and professional riggers. The most common of these are nylon webbing (for attaching to support structures), rappelling rope (for connecting support structures to suspension frames) and parachute line (to connect the body to the suspension frame).

SUPPLIERS

You will need to erect some form of stable structure. One of the fastest and most stable boxes can be built from scaffolding that is easily rented in any major city. Although there have been a lot of people designing freestanding suspension frames, it really seems at this point that scaffolding is the cheapest, easiest, and safest way to do it.

Trees are simple in that slings can easily be wrapped around large branches. Once the slings are in place, a block and tackle or hoist can be easily attached.

Connect your rigging to one or more solid points of the building’s superstructure, for example by placing a sling around an I-beam or by setting permanent points in wood or concrete buildings. As always, it is best to rig for at least three times the amount of weight you are expecting to hold.

First connect one rope to a solid structure (such as a ceiling beam or a tree branch). To that, connect the suspension frame/rig at height where the suspendee will be off the ground, but is low enough that they can step off a chair or a table beneath them can be lowered. When the suspension is over, they step back onto the chair.

Horizontal suspensions are normally done from a rectangular cube with multiple eyebolts facing downwards on the long sides of the frame and four eyebolts facing up in the corners. A single long bar design can be used as well for horizontal suspensions. Vertical suspensions are normally one from a single beam with five eyebolts facing down and two eyebolts facing up.

The two most common lifting mechanisms are “block and tackle” and “chain hoists”. Block and tackle pulley systems have the advantage of being lightweight and are quick for lifting and lowering. The only drawback is that they require a physical point to secure the rope’s end. These days, chain hoists are becoming more and more popular due to their self locking system that handles and enormous amount of weight.

There are multiple knots that work well for suspension rigging. The two most common knots are figure eights and clove hitches. The figure eight knot is probably the most common knot, and is used both for primary and suspension rigging. It is an extremely strong knot, tightens down upon itself and is very easy to untie. The clove hitch is an easily adjustable knot that is often used where the length of the ropes must be adjusted, such as suspensions that require multiple balanced rigging systems.

There are many different types of rope, webbing, chain and cable that can be used for suspension. In general, most suspension groups work with the same materials that are used by climbers and professional riggers. The most common of these are nylon webbing (for attaching to support structures), rappelling rope (for connecting support structures to suspension frames) and parachute line (to connect the body to the suspension frame).