If you’ve ever watched a rodeo or visited a working dude ranch, you may have wondered: what kind of rope is used for a lasso or lariat rope? Lassos have been used by cowboys for hundreds of years to rope cattle. Today, people use them for trick roping, roping competitions, and managing cattle.
Lassos are available in different lengths and styles depending on what activity you are doing. It takes lots of skill to lasso, no matter if you are roping cattle or doing tricks. However, many people are able to master roping with lots of practice and dedication.
What Kind of Rope is Used for a Lasso?
The word lasso comes from the Spanish word “Lazo” which means tie. Deceptions of lassos were first seen in hieroglyphics of Ancient Egyptian Pharaohs. Historians also believe that Huns in Ancient China used lassos as well.
Lassos or lariat ropes have also been used by Native Americans, who were the first to incorporate using them on horseback. From there, lassos have been an icon of the American cowboy.
In order for lassos to be effective, they need to be made out of sturdy, yet flexible material. Originally they would use horsehair or cowhide. Hair ropes were often more popular than cowhide ropes since they were lighter, but cowhide ropes were sturdier and would get fewer kinks.
For modern-day lassos, nylon is a popular material that many people prefer to use. Nylon is sturdy and sustainable, making it a favorite among many ropers. It is stiff, which allows the loop to stay open while you throw it.
Some nylon ropes are braided, which makes them more durable, with many people finding them more comfortable to use. Nylon lassos are often the best option for beginners. They tend to be easier to work with than other materials.
Polyester Lariat Rope
Another popular material used for lassos is polyester. Polyester is durable yet flexible, making it supple to use. It will often be twisted or braided to make it extra sturdy.
Polyester rope is often a popular choice for beginners or children. They are often ideal for tie-downs and team lasso events. If you are wanting to practice your lasso skills in your backyard, they are a great choice.
Hemp Lariat Rope
Though not as common as nylon or polyester, hemp is another material that people use to make lassos. They are a wonderful alternative to traditional horsehair and cowhide. Many people will choose hemp rope is for its strength and durability.
Hemp rope is long-lasting and made from natural material. Though they can be great for those with experience, they are not practical for beginners as they are heavy. Though they take practice to use, many experienced ropers do like to use them.
Maguey Lariat Rope
Maguey, which is agave, is a popular material people use to make lassos in Mexico. Many people prefer to use it for its hard, yet smooth finish. Those who do trick roping often use Maguey ropes.
A Cowboy Tradition
There are several different types of lassos ropers use, each with their own advantages. Every roper will have their favorite rope that uses for lassoing.