The Differences Between Bull Riding and Bronc Riding

When it comes to a rodeo event, there are two very exciting 8-second rides that take place. One is the bull riding competition and the other is bronc or bronco riding. These are two sports that many people love to watch. Both rides last 8 seconds or until the rider falls off. One is a bull against the rider and the other is horse against rider. What makes them appealing and how can two similar sports be so much alike, but different at the same time? You have to first take a look at the history of each.

Bull riding has been around for many years. Its roots began in Mexico during the 16th century. During that time in history, the bull would be ridden until it died. From there, the idea that it should be stopped before that point was reached and riders simply had to stay on until the bull stopped bucking. By the time Wild West shows began using bull riders in the show, Texas had banned the rougher sport. In 1935, Brahma bulls began being the ride of choice whereas before, the preferred ride were steers. Over time, the safety of the animal has become a primary consideration. There are many rules set into place on how to ensure that the animal is not harmed. For the score, a rider and his bull are both graded on their performances.

Bronc riding can be dated back to the early years when it was necessary to break a horse so that it could be ridable. It took a brave soul to get on a wild horse and tame him to allow the rider to saddle him and ride out to herd livestock. The sport of bronc riding took root as people would try to tame the horse. Nowadays, horses are bred specifically for their strength, bucking ability, and their agility. However, to be a bucking horse, most of the time the animal will be a gelding, a castrated male. Though, there are some rare female and stallions who also get used as bucking horses. To do well, a rider must be in the right position upon the horse leaving its chute. The rider must be able to stay on the horse while riding one handed for a full 8 seconds. Both the rider and the horse are given a score and the total of the two numbers is what signifies the winner.

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