I have always been fascinated by the mechanical bull. It looks like a lot of fun really. The people jump up on it and the operator presses a button and the mechanical bull comes to life. It slowly spins and starts to buck, spin and bob turning and moving in a wide range of motion as it increases speed until eventually the rider falls off.
Mechanical bulls have existed for decades as a training device for rodeo competitors so they could practice anytime and not have to worry about using an actual animal. Before they had the, uh, mechanical mechanical bull, someone created a system by attaching ropes to the ends of a large barrel and suspending it from four tall posts or the rafters of a barn. The rider would straddle the barrel and two to four other people would move the barrel by yanking the ropes to emulate the movement of a real animal. Now-a-days a special “quick stop” motor allows the operator to control the ride and ensure safety for the rider and the pleasure of the spectator. The trained operator at the variable speed control box regulates the unit’s Buck-and-Spin speed, as well as spin direction and the, uh, bounciness of the rider. The equipment has the capability of starting rides very slowly and speeds can be advanced according to a rider’s ability and the operator’s perversiveness. (It that such a word? Who cares right?)
One of the earliest uses as a form of entertainment was at Bertrand Island Amusement Park in New Jersey, where a mechanical bucking bronco ride was introduced in the 1930s, under the name of “Ride ‘Em Cowboy!”. Yeehaw! Now they have Bikini Bull Riding nights and events like that…so I am told. A lot of people like to watch these things and as with most events girls always find a way to sexify it as this YouTube video and many others like it go to show. Like I always say, “If it makes you smile and no one gets hurt then why not do it?”
There are also different versions of the mechanical bull with some of the machines not being bulls at all.
Or check out this Not-Safe-For-Work (NSFW) version. Fun eh?
They have a couple mechanical bull attractions in Las Vegas. One at Gilley’s and one at PBR Rock Bar and I suppose there are more when the Pro Bull Riding (PBR) event comes to town. I rode the one at Gilley’s and quickly looked something like this-
Did you ever ride a mechanical bull? What was your experience? Share your thoughts in the comments. Would love to hear from you.
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