Bull Riding is the most dangerous event in rodeo and likewise the most popular with spectators. Every bull is unique, with different dispositions and styles of bucking. Some bulls buck straight ahead, some are “spinners”, bucking and jumping in tight circles and some bulls, the “bad” bulls, have only one thing in mind, physical revenge. Serious injury or death are always a possibility to riders in this event. The bulls used in this event weigh in at a ton or more and often have dangerous horns. Bull riding requires balance, flexibility, coordination, quick reflexes and intense physical strength. Courage is also a prerequisite for a bull rider. Riders are judged on their form and style and are disqualified if they touch the animal with the free hand.
Protective equipment wore by bull riders, such as vests and headgear are becoming more prominent in the arena. The protective vest worn by many athletes was invented by PBR Vice President and former bronc and bull rider Cody Lambert. The vest not only absorbs shock, it dissipates it over a larger area. The vest is made of a material called Kevlar, the same material used to make bullet-proof vests. Since the athletes began wearing the vests, the number of internal injuries has dropped dramatically. (Source: Professional Bull Riders Association).
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