Team Roping is a fun, fast paced, competitive event that can be enjoyed by anyone at any age. To begin, team roping consists of a steer and two mounted competitors. The steer is released from the chute and if the ropers leave before the steer gets a sufficient head start, they get a 5 second penalty added on to their time. This is called breaking the barrier, a rope tied around the steer’s neck and across the header’s box. The roper on the left side of the steer will rope the steer’s horns and turn at a right angle to the left. After making the turn, the heeler will come in to rope both hind feet. If either roper misses, they get no time. If the heeler only catches one leg, another 5 seconds is added to their time. Team roping is the only event in rodeo that requires or allows more than one person to compete for a score., team roping.
Beginners need to have a few tools to get started. Headers would want to buy an extra soft (XS) or and extra, extra soft (XXS) rope to begin with. It will be pliable enough to allow you to develop the proper swing. It is also a good idea to have a roping dummy to practice on. A lot of team roping professionals will tell you that you need to rope your dummy between 50 – 100 times a day. Swing your loop overhead in a smooth, flat motion, aim for the back of the steers head and release the loop. When you release, stop you hand right where you threw the loop; your hand should be open, flat, and palm down.
Heelers will also want to start with a softer rope. As you begin to twirl your loop, do so kind of on the left side of your body, always keeping your tip on the left side. This will ensure that when you throw your loop, it will go under the steer. Heeling is all about timing. You want the tip of your loop to be at the lowest point as the steers legs are coming forward. The lay of your loop is also very important; it should stand up against the steers legs with the bottom loop on the ground so the steer will jump right into it.
It is also a good idea to wear a team roping glove to protect your hands from possible rope burns as you pull the slack from your rope and go to dally. Heelers need to be careful not to go to the horn to fast or you will give the steer too much slack and they will slip out of your loop. You saddle horn needs to be wrapped with rubber to keep your dally from slipping and need to be replaced frequently. Be willing to try out different rope types and sizes until you find the one that works best for you. Be sure that your horse’s legs are protected with at least a pair of bell boots. Following these simple tips will help you become a great team roper.