Crash Restraint Blog Archives (2010-2016)

How to Tie Your Shoelaces


I've oft heard the adage repeated by bondage instructors that if you can tie your shoelaces, you can do rope bondage.

Now, personally, I've always preferred shoes with velcro. But it did get me thinking -- shouldn't the inverse also be true, that if you can do rope bondage, you should be able to tie your shoelaces?

Because I've been tying my shoelaces poorly for years. In fact, I bet most of us have. The only two methods I was taught as a kid were:

  • The bow. Easy to tie and untie, compact and attractive. But in all but the stickiest of shoelaces, it inevitably falls apart before you get halfway down the block, leaving your laces trailing.
  • The double-knotted bow. Taking the loops of the bow and tying an additional overhand makes it nice and secure. But now you've got a huge-ass knot that is difficult to undo one-handed; worse, sometimes when you undo the final overhand, one of the ends pulls out the wrong way through the bow, resulting in an even harder-to-get-out knot.

Surely, there must be a knot that combines the compactness and easy quick release of the bow, with a bit more security, right? After some fiddling about, I settled on a modified bow, where one loop is wrapped twice, instead of only once, about the other.

I've been using that variation to tie my shoes for several months, and find my life much improved; gone are the bulky double knots and struggling to undo them -- now my laces stay tied all day, and yet come undone instantly with a tug on either end.

It turns out, unsurprisingly, I'm not the first one to think of this method, and there is already an excellent tutorial available on it. Thank you, Ian. It's nice to know someone has spent even more time thinking about shoelaces than I have.