I've Been Tying My Shoelaces Wrong!

All these years, and nobody ever told me that I was just making a slip knot. You can learn how to tie your shoes, too, at Ian’s Shoelace Site.

Do your shoelaces always come undone? Do your shoelace bows sit vertically instead of across the shoe? If so, you’re probably tying a “Slip Knot”, and one simple change to your technique will result in a balanced knot that sits straight and stays secure.

Shoelace knots are usually tied in two stages: A Starting Knot followed by a Finishing Bow. Each of these stages “twists” the shoelaces slightly, so it’s important that the two stages be tied in opposite directions in order to cancel out each other’s twists.

This balances the knot both visually (the bow sits straight) and functionally (the knot stays tied) and is the right way to tie shoelaces.

Wrong way results in a “Slip Knot” If both stages are tied in the same direction, those twists compound each other, resulting in an un-balanced knot that sits crooked and comes undone more easily. This is the wrong way to tie shoelaces, and is commonly known as a “Slip Knot”.

There are pictures to help, including 17 ways to tie your laces.