Rodeo Clowns Not Joking About Bull Riding - News, Sports and Weather

Rodeo Clowns Not Joking About Bull Riding

Posted: Updated:

Bull riding is one of the most popular events in rodeo. Fans love it because of the danger, but for those in charge of protecting those cowboys it's all business.

"It's a lot of fun, but during the bull riding it gets a little serious," said rodeo clown Mark "Swing" Swingler. "Especially in an arena like Helena, it's so large. So I've got to position that barrel to where if they can't get to the fence, they can get behind that barrel and buy them an extra second to keep them from getting run over."

Keeping those cowboys safe takes a ton of training, but for rodeo clowns like Swing, it never hurts to have a little inside info.

"I rode bulls in high school and college, so that helps," said Swing. "Knowing what's going through everyone's mind during the ride, and even after is an extreme benefit to me."

That experience is even more of a benefit to the rider. Knowing where to place the barrel is one thing, but then you've got to be ready for a two-ton bull to come at you. So I had Swing show me how he does it.

"Well basically you jump," laughed Swing. "And you sit just up here, and then you go down with one foot, down with another foot, and you're in."

After seeing just how easy that was, I figured I had to get into the barrel to show what Swing does once he's in the barrel.

And when Swing sees a bull coming he actually has to drop down, and push on both sides here with his back, his hands, and his feet just to make sure he stays stable. And now these guys are going to go ahead and give me a little bit of a ride.

While it all looks like fun and games being a rodeo clown it's actually pretty serious, all be it dizzy work. And thankfully for bull riders everywhere they've got guys like Swing, and not me covering their backs.

Powered by Frankly
Copyright - All content © 2001 - 2018. All Rights Reserved. For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy, Terms of Service, and Ad Choices.