Shoe tying can be difficult for even the most seasoned shoe wearing professional. I’m constantly getting questions about this topic and hopefully by revealing my methods I can shed some light on the issue.

1: Put your Shoes On

This may seem oversimplified, but it is often overlooked and can be a deal breaker if forgotten. Assuming you’ve chosen the correct size footwear your shoes should feel snug in the toe and loose at the ankle. If you want to succeed in the competitive world of shoe-tying this step is absolutely essential.

2. Pull the Slack

This is where I see a lot of people slip up. In order to ensure that your shoe is properly secured to your foot you absolutely must make sure the laces are tight. This can be accomplished by progressively pulling up the slack in the lacing starting at the toe-end of the shoe and working up toward the ankle. Take your time with this and make sure all the slack is pulled out with the open ends of the lace.

3. Choose a Knot

There are varying opinions on which knot will perform the best. Each different knot will provide either more efficiency or reliability and it’s ultimately your decision which you prefer. In this article we’re going to focus on the Standard Shoelace Knot.

4. Tie the Knot

Here’s the moment of truth; all your preparation will finally pay off. The standard knot is the simplest to perform and most novices can pick it up relatively quickly. Start by crossing the laces over the tongue of the shoe and wrap one lace around the other; both laces should now be on the opposite side of their origin. Next, take one end of the lace and make a long loop, cross the other lace over creating a “hole” in the center of the knot. Feed the center of the string that crossed over into the hole. You should now have two loops of equal size in each hand. Pull both loops evenly until the knot in the center is firmly against the tongue of the shoe.

Rinse and Repeat with the other foot and you will have a pair of respectably tied shoes. Once you’ve mastered the standard knot I encourage you to move on to more complex techniques. The more diverse your shoe-tying portfolio the better off you’ll be in the long term.