Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Higgins, TX. YeeHaw!!
Yes, generally speaking, ropes that are sold as "decorative" aren't safe to use for actual roping because they usually have a weak spot in them. That wouldn't be a huge thing for practice except the weak spots often make the ropes swing funny. You'll probably go through countless different brands/styles/stiffness before you find one that you like. Personally, I like the xtra soft Cactus Hypnotic ropes, but I know others who don't.
My best advice, get you a hay bale, a plastic steer head (or a horned steer skull) and get to roping. Browse around on youtube for instructional videos. When you can consistently catch the plastic steer head from different distances and positions, then you're ready to start roping the plastic head from the back of a horse. When you can rope it consistently from every direction and distance with the horse standing still, then you're ready to start roping it with the horse moving past it.
Have you ever handled/been around cattle? If not, then when you get to the point that you might be ready to start on live critters, you'll need to find someone who has some roping steers. Also, at that point, you'll really need to start lessons somewhere because trying to handle a rope and 2 critters with minds of their own is challenging to say the least....and dangerous too.
Always remember that feeling of looking at a big, open country over the ears of a good horse, seeing a new trail unwind ahead of you, and that ever-spectacular view from the top of the ridge!!! Follow my training blog: http://robertsontraining.blogspot.com/