Granny Knot Experiment

Die Maus granny knots experiment screenshot 1

In April 2013, the German TV program Frag doch mal die Maus (translation: Just ask the mouse) devoted a large portion of one show to answering a question from eight-year-old viewer Sanam from Düsseldorf, who asked why her shoelaces always came undone. The show included a fascinating shoelace knot experiment.

Die Maus granny knots experiment screenshot 2

They began by demonstrating the correct Standard Shoelace Knot technique on one shoe (the blue shoelaces on the big shoe on the left) and the incorrect Granny Knot technique on the other (the red shoelaces on the big shoe on the right). With the Granny Knot, they clearly showed that the bow lies along the shoe (from heel to toe).

Die Maus granny knots experiment screenshot 3

The action then shifted to a nearby gymnasium for a live experiment. Ten people had their left shoes laced with red shoelaces and tied with Granny Knots and their right shoes laced with blue shoelaces and tied with Standard Shoelace Knots. All of the participants then stepped onto treadmills and started running.

Die Maus granny knots experiment screenshot 4

After one hour, the ten participants came into the studio to show the results. SEVEN of the ten Granny Knots had come undone whereas NONE of the correctly tied Standard Shoelace Knots had come undone. In other words, 70% of the Granny Knots failed while 100% of the Standard Shoelace Knots passed!

Conclusion

The experiment was an excellent demonstration of the unreliability of the Granny Knot versus the reliability of the Standard Shoelace Knot, with the treadmills guaranteeing an outcome within a short time frame.

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