How a Bull Riding Vest Protects the Rider

How a Bull Riding Vest Protects the RiderThere is no doubt that bull riding is a dangerous sport. It is also one of the most popular rodeo events, both for the riders and the audience. As more people enter the sport, and there continue to be significant injuries, or even deaths, reported due to the erratic behavior of the bulls, there has been an increased demand for safety equipment.  Side note: is a helpful site if you are looking to buy bull riding safety gear.

Many people might not think that a vest can provide any sort of protection to a person riding a bull. After all, most vests that these sports figures wore in the past are nothing more than a flimsy piece of material that is pleasing to look at. Today, however, much has changed in the rodeo world when it comes to protective vests.

A bull riding vest can be the lifesaving barrier between the bull and the bull rider’s chest. Specially designed to minimize the impact of flying hooves, it does so by spreading the effect across a larger area of the chest. This dissipation helps to reduce the likelihood of a serious injury, such as a puncture to one particular place.

The bull riding vests of today are equipped with a type of material that is designed to absorb a great deal of the impact. Upon this absorption, this shock is then dissipated throughout the upper body. This helps to minimize the chances of only one small part of the chest of taking the brunt of the blow. Instead, the blow is spread out across a wider area so that it ends up not being felt as significantly.

As with a great deal of protective gear, not only in the rodeo industry, there have been many improvements since it was first introduced. In spite of the 1989 goring death of Lane Frost due to his broken ribs puncturing his heart and lungs, many bull riders have expressed a reluctance to wear such gear. They claim it is difficult to maneuver in while they are wearing it and that it is heavy.

With the technology that is available today, however, that is no longer the case. Many bull riding vests feature a fully padded chest area that can be removed for easy care. Lightweight yet strong enough to withstand the elements that could occur in the arena, many of these bull riding vests also come equipped with a neck roll.

An adjustable neck roll can help reduce the extension of the head and neck that is often experienced during particularly challenging rides. The adjustability allows for a custom fit for each rider so that better protection can be experienced. Because it has a great deal of high density padding, the neck roll helps to keep the head and neck in proper alignment in the event of a fall.

For those bull riders who want their equipment to fit them like a glove, custom made safety vests can ensure that they are safe. Having the flexibility to have a vest made to a particular body frame offers the bull rider the opportunity to add new features or adjust current ones. Made from high quality leather, these vests do not skimp on good looks either.

With more and more rodeo associations and promoters demanding that bull riders wear vests, it makes sense to invest in one that will last a long time. Heavy duty zippers and overlapping belly bands are just two of the features that help with both the fit and the durability of the equipment. You can also find more info on this topic at

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