The bowline knot is used in MaxCell and other applications where you don’t want the knot to cinch down on something. I had the pleasure of teaching my son this knot for Boy Scout water rescue where you make a loop to place around someone to drag them back to shore. Here’s a tip – tie the knot before you jump in the water. It’s also useful because the knot can easily be removed after being under a heavy load. One of the things I have noticed when teaching someone this knot is that I’m left-handed and make my knot “backwards” to most individuals. See the attached for a mirror image of both left and right hand methods and this may help.
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