Sportsheets Presents ‘Kink 101’ Class to USC Kinky Trojans
LOS ANGELES — Last night, a group of about 50 students gathered at an auditorium at the University of Southern California to get BDSM and sex positioning tips from leading bondage gear manufacturer Sportsheets.
The “Sportsheets: Kink 101” event was organized by USC Kinky Trojans, a student-run kink education group.
“The USC Kinky Trojans is a club aimed at educating and providing a supportive community for students who are curious about kink and BDSM,” the club’s organizer Cherys Fair told XBIZ. “There are four students directly involved in running the club, and 10-15 regular members. We have small group discussions once a month, and events led by outside presenters also once a month.
“This semester we've had ‘The Top 10 Secrets of Cock and Ball Play,’ a pet play talk and demonstration, a talk on transgender issues in the BDSM community, and now this event with Sportsheets that we've been looking forward to all semester.”
Sportsheets founder Tom Stewart, along with sales and marketing reps Emily Silva and Colleen Godin, were on hand to lead attendees through a series of product demos and a question-and-answer session.
Stewart kicked off the presentation by telling the students how the 20-year-old brand came to exist.
“Back in the late ‘80s David Letterman did one of his stunts where he dressed up in a Velcro suit and launched himself onto a Velcro wall and stuck,” Stewart said. “At that time I was a helicopter pilot in the Marine Corps. One night while talking with the guys, somebody brought up the Letterman episode. One of the guys in the group said, ‘Wouldn’t it be cool if you could stick your girlfriend to a Velcro wall and have sex with her?’”
The event was a learning experience for Sportsheets as well. Stewart advised attendees that the workshop was being filmed for the company’s learning purposes as they plan to bring their class to more schools.
“Now you know a little about what we’re doing; we don’t know what you’re doing — that’s why we’re here,” Stewart said. “We want to learn from you too. What products would you like us to make?”
Following their introduction, the Sportsheets team provided a presentation on the basics of BDSM play, emphasizing the importance of consent and the use of “safe words.” Sportsheets also provided attendees with a free goodies bag that included a blindfold and tickler that was part of Sportsheets’ first demonstration that focused on how sense deprivation can contribute to erotic pleasure.
With several volunteers enlisted to participate in product demos before the actual event, the temptation of being rewarded with free Sportsheets products prompted several additional attendees to volunteer to be restrained and blindfolded in front of their peers.
The products demonstrated included The Original Sportsheets, Door Cuffs, Door Swing, the G-spot Link and more. Stewart, Silva and Godin took turns explaining how each product works and the various sex positions that are made possible by using them.
"Consumer presentations humanize manufacturers, which is essential to growing our presence and mission," Godin told XBIZ. "Whether we're speaking to students or retail consumers at store events, interacting directly with the people who are actually using our products shows that we're not another faceless company who just wants to turn a profit.
"Reaching college students is important because they are the future of sex positivity. We cannot foster a generation of accepting and understanding individuals without creating the right attitude towards healthy sexual behavior."
The workshop concluded with a Q&A — which allowed students to ask questions anonymously via text — about a variety of BDSM-related questions as well as what it’s like to work for a pleasure products company.