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Rodeo Superstitions

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1. Never Set Your Cowboy Hat on a Bed
It could lead to a major injury or even death.

 

This belief comes from the close association of sleep with death (eternal rest, etc.) and the dangerous lifestyle of a rodeo cowboy.

2. Never Wear Yellow in the Arena
This superstition could be contributed to that fact that yellow is not a very popular color. More likely it's because yellow is associated with cowardice and so you won't see too much yellow in the arena.

3. Always Shave Before a Performance
Always clean yourself up for lady luck.

4. Wear Different Color Socks on Each Foot
Other sports have similar superstitions to this one.

5. Never Compete with Change in Your Pocket
It might be all you'll win. Rodeo life is really a tough life. Unlike other sports competitors, rodeo cowboys do not receive a salary. Success is tied to winning and winning alone. This hard reality makes cowboys and cowgirls try to give 100% each time they compete because without the prize money you can't pay entry fees at the next show.

6. Don't Eat Peanuts or Popcorn
Baseball has this superstition also. Eating this small and dried food can cause you to choke.

7. Never Kick a Paper Cup at a Rodeo.
Paper cups have a tendency to spook horses as they blow (or are kicked) around. This can lead to some pretty bad results.

8. Saddle Bronc Riders Should Mount Right Foot First
This is an interesting one. I have been researching this and strangely enough it may go back to the Middle-Ages, and is a direct link to the modern cowboy from the knight of Medieval Europe. Passed from Spanish knights called Caballeros on to the Vaquero and then the cowboy.
The theory goes that knights would mount from stands during jousts and would stick their feet in right side stirrups first due to the fact that the left side or sinister side was considered bad or evil. If this is the true reason for this belief, or something else is, it makes for a really interesting superstition.

9. Eat a Hot Dog Before the Rodeo
The reason for this superstition escapes me as well. I would always eat something (to calm my nerves) but as for the hot dog part, who knows?

10. Never Read your Horoscope on Competition Day.
This superstition obviously has something to do with tempting your luck..

11. Never compete with change in your pocket.
It will be all you win. Rodeo life is really a tough life. Unlike other sports competitors, rodeo cowboys do not receive a salary. Success is tied to winning and winning alone. This hard reality makes cowboys and cowgirls try to give 100% each time they compete because without the entry fees you can not head down the road to the next show.

 

12. Don't eat peanuts or popcorn in the arena.
I think baseball has this superstition also. Eating this small and dried food can cause you to choke in the middle of your ride or run. That's how it was explained to me.

 

13. Never kick a paper cup at a rodeo.
Paper cups have a tendency to spook horses as they blow (or are kicked) around.

 

14. This can lead to some pretty bad results.

 

15. For luck, Saddle Bronc riders always put right foot first in stirrups. Now this is an interesting one. I have been researching this and strangely enough it goes back to the Middle-Ages. This is a direct link to the modern cowboy from the knight of Medieval Europe. Passed from Spanish knights called Caballeros, then to the Vaquero and on to the Cowboy. The theory goes that knights would mount from stands during jousts and would stick their feet in right side stirrups first due to the fact that the left side or sinister side was considered bad or evil. If this is the true reason for this belief, or something else is, it makes for a really interesting superstition.

 

16. Eat a hot dog before the rodeo for luck.
The reason for this superstition escapes me as well. I would always eat something (to calm my nerves) but as for the hot dog part, who knows?

 

17. Never read your horoscope on competition day.
This superstition obviously has something to do with tempting your luck, but as for the details, I'm not sure.

 

These are some of the commonly known superstitions out there on the rodeo circuit. I know that there are also plenty of personal superstitions that are being practiced as well (not cutting hair, $5 bill in back pocket, etc.)

Thanks for stopping by and y'all come back now ya hear!