What is the State Sport of Texas?

Barrel racing event at Rodeo Austin in Austin, Texas. Editorial credit: T photography / Shutterstock.com
Barrel racing event at Rodeo Austin in Austin, Texas. Editorial credit: T photography / Shutterstock.com

There is no shortage of sports in Texas. Games have always enjoyed a high reputation since the Texas cowboy pioneered the rodeos. Today, the state is popular for high school football alongside other sports. Individuals from Texas have enjoyed notable success in various professional sports like golf and rodeo. However, despite the state boasting of several teams in all the American professional leagues, only the Houston Rocket and Dallas Cowboy have claimed world championships. Because of their love for sports, Texans have their own state sport, rodeo.

Why Rodeo Is The State Sport of Texas?

The residents of Texas have played major roles in the development and leadership of rodeo than any other professional sport. They make up the largest number of hall of fame honorees than any other state in the US. The reason why Texans have dominated the sport is that it is a native of the Southwest, with Texas as the focal point. The other sports mainly originated from outside the state before moving into Texas. About 50 Texans have been honored by halls of fame for rodeo more than any other sports. Several Texans are also credited with assuming leadership of the sport and taking it to new heights of popularity. In June 1997, rodeo officially became the sport of Texas following a resolution that was passed by the state legislatures. It is also the official sport of the states of Wyoming and South Dakota.

What Is The Rodeo Sport?

Rodeo is a type of sport that resulted from certain skills that cowboys were required to develop in order to work and herd cattle. The sporting event involves the use of a horse and certain livestock and is meant to test the speed and skills of cowgirls and cowboys. The professional rodeo event includes team roping, tie-down roping, bronc riding, steer wrestling, barrel racing, and bull riding. Events like goat tying, pole bending, and breakaway roping, may also be part of the sport depending on the region one is coming from. Rodeo is a popular sport mainly in Canada and the United States. In the US, the sport is sanctioned and governed by the Professional Rodeo Cowboy Association. The competition season for the rodeo in the country takes place from spring to fall.

Competitive Events

Professional rodeo involves both timed and rough stock events. The timed event including roping competition which is based on tasks such as capturing a calf or cattle for medical treatment, branding, or any other purpose. The cowboy or cowgirl is expected to throw a type of rope known as lariat over the head of the animal, horns, or hind legs, and secure it in a way dictated by its size or age. Other timed events include steer racing, goat tying, and barrel racing. The rough stock competition involves the use of two well-trained horses. These horses are ridden by “pick up people” (men or women) who have been tasked with assisting fallen riders or successful ones safely get off the bucking animal. Despite the popularity of rodeo, the sport has attracted opposition from animal welfare groups who are of the opinion that the competition amounts to animal cruelty.


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