Knots are used for a variety of purposes, especially by those who spend time around boats. In fact, some of the staff at our equipment leasing company decided to learn about tying knots. The only way to keep a new boat safe is to learn the best way to tie it down. Children and youth, especially members of scouting groups, also tend to be interested in knots. Here we’ll discuss some common types of knots, describe them, and provide resources for more information.


The bowline is one of the most basic knots, and it can actually be tied with one hand. It essentially contains just one large loop at the end of the rope. WikiHow gives detailed step-by-step instructions for tying this knot and includes pictures and a video.

Clove Hitch

The clove hitch is a more complex knot. It involves rolling the rope around into different loops and twisting those loops together to form a knot. It's one of the knots that Scouts are required to learn. Real Knots shows what this knot looks like and how to tie it. Animated Knots uses animations to show how to tie a clove hitch.

Figure Eight, Flemish Knot, Savoy Knot

The figure eight is one of the first knots a child learns to tie. It is sometimes called a Flemish knot or a Savoy knot. The knot is tied by creating two loops and pulling one through the other to create the shape of the number eight. Net Knots explains the steps for creating the knot and has an image of the finished product. Animated Knots uses an animation to show how to tie the knot.

Fisherman's Knot, Improved Clinch Knot

The fisherman's knot gets its name from the fact that anglers once used it, but it's also known as the improved clinch knot. The knot is made by twisting the rope or string around another object, and then pulling the loose end through the loops. gives step-by-step instructions for tying this knot.

Lark's Head, Cow Hitch, Lanyard Hitch

The lark's head is typically used to tie farm animals to a pole. It's also known as the cow hitch or the lanyard hitch. The rope is twisted around the pole and then over the loose end of the rope to hold the knot in place. I Will Knot offers a video guide to tying a lark's head.

Square Knot, Reef Knot

The square knot or reef knot is related to a variety of different knots, including the knots used in tying shoes. The rope is twisted into an X shape and then a U shape to tie the knot. WikiHow gives a guide to tying a square knot.

Rolling Hitch, Magner's Hitch, Magnus Hitch

A rolling hitch, Magner's hitch, or Magnus hitch is a type of knot that wraps around a pole or another piece of rope. Once you pull the loose end out of the rope, the knot is tied. Apparent Wind provides step-by-step instructions for creating the knot. Real Knots gives more information about this knot.

Round Turn and Two Half Hitches

This type of knot ties around a standing object such as a pole. It's fairly complex, but it doesn't take long to learn the process. Animated Knots shows a video and steps for tying the knot.


The sheepshank involves folding the knot in half and looping the ends of the rope on both sides. Animated Knots has an animated video showing how the knot is tied.

Sheet Bend

This knot uses two different ropes. A loop put in one rope forms the knot when the edge of the second rope is pulled through. I Will Knot provides step-by-step instructions and a video tutorial on creating the knot. Animated Knots also shows how the knot is tied.

Double Sheet Bend

The double sheet bend is a similar knot to the regular sheet bend, except that it involves placing a second knot into the ropes for more strength. This YouTube video shows how it's used in sailing, and how it's made.

Thief Knot

The thief knot's name comes from travelers who once tied their bags closed this way, so that they could quickly see whether anyone had opened their bags. This YouTube video demonstrates how to tie this knot. Net Knots gives step-by-step instructions.

Thumb Knot, Overhand Knot

The thumb knot or overhand knot is the easiest knot to tie because it looks like a pretzel that has been pulled together. The Fishing Khaolak provides more information on this knot, as well as instructions that show how to tie it.

Timber Hitch

The timber hitch is a pretty difficult knot because the rope wraps around a pole and around itself several times before it's closed off. Animated Knots shows how this knot is made. Wikipedia also shows several images of the knot.

About The Author

About the Author

Written by Chris Fletcher (aka the Lease Guy). Chris is a senior account executive at Crest Capital Reviews, where he manages vendor finance programs for manufacturers and dealers of equipment, vehicles, and software. He's also an active Twitterer—check out his page if you follow financial topics and current events in the world of finance.