2 min read
Australian stock whips originates from the english hunting whip, and is used for mustering cattle. They are made of nylon or plaited leather with a stiff handle. The leather used is usually redhide, greenhide or sometimes kangaroo leather. They make a loud 'cracking' noise when used correctly to easily steer the animals in the desired direction. Australian stock whips are also known for lasting forever with their durable leather and lightweight design, you can hang it over your shoulder when riding without it sliding off.
The Australian stock whip is made of 5 parts as pictured below, the cracker, thong, fall, keeper and stock.
The Australian stock whip has been the preferred tool for Australian stockmen since the 19th century. It has a number of uses including moving cattle, a weapon for snakes, counting cattle (by making a knot for every 100) or for use in cattle shows. Learning how to master a stock whip properly requires training, we therefore recommend that you find an experienced handler that can perfect your technique.
There are a number of tricks and techniques when learning how to use a stock whip. The most popular cracks are:
The Cattlemans Crack
You swing the whip all the way up and down to the side. Please note - no 'slamming needed'. Simply whip it with your arm relaxed when going down
The Overhead Crack
Keep the whip up, and in eyelevel at all times and simply swing your arm to the right.
The Reverse Cattlemans Crack
Swing your whip up backwards and swing your elbow only back down until your arm comes back down to your hip.
Slow Figure Eight
This is a combo crack that first cracks in front and straight away moves through your body and cracks behind (like an eight).
The Reverse Overhead Crack
Swing the whip over your head in a clockwise motion, the gently reverse the direction and get a crack (still in eye level).
The Slow figure Eight in The Overhead Plane
Simply do the reverse overhead crack combined with the overhead crack.
Once you are more experienced and master all the crack you can start putting them together and moving from vertical to horizontal cracks, turning and spins. Watch the video below to see even more advanced cracks.
We regurarly get asked how nylon whips are made and what goes into the making and material to make it so strong and durable. To get an insight, watch the video below.
Australian stock whips comes in a range of sizes including: 4 foot x 4 plait, 5 foot x 4 plait, 6 foot x 4 plait, 5 foot x 8 plait, 6 foot x 8 plait, 7 foot x 8 plait, 8 foot x 8 plait.
A longer whip is generally more tiring to use and as a general rule - a 4-6 foot stock whip is the best place to start for a beginner.
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