A spanking paddle is an implement used to strike a person on the buttocks. The act of striking a person with a paddle is known as “paddling”. A paddling may be for punishment (normally of a student at school), or as an initiation or hazing ritual, or for erotic purposes.
A paddle has two parts: a handle and a blade. Most paddles are designed to be held with one hand, but a giant paddle may be designed to be held with two hands. The blade is typically 3 to 4 inches (100 mm) wide, 1/4 inch thick, and 1 to 3 feet (0.91 m) in length.
In the great majority of cases, the paddle is aimed at the recipient’s buttocks; rarely, the back of the thighs might also be targeted.
Spanking paddles are made of wood, or occasionally plastic. Paddles used for school punishments may be roughly hewn from commonly available wood. Occasionally, paddles may have holes drilled into them, so there is less air drag when the paddle approaches the buttocks. The paddles used for fraternity and sorority initiation ceremonies are often professionally made and engraved with organizational symbols and slogans.