How to Tie a Swiss Seat

There are plenty of knots you can learn that will have much more use and be of more value than the Swiss Seat.  That is, until you need to go climbing or rope crossing.  The Swiss Seat is a makeshift harness that you can use to attach yourself to a rappel or bridge rope in case you don’t have a climbing harness.

  1. First of all, you need a length of rope 6-10 feet in length.
  2. Fold the rope in half, grasping the midpoint.
  3. Place the bight on your left hip.
  4. Wrap the rope around your waist on both sides, ensuring that the midpoint stays over the left hip.
  5. Pull one side under the other to make a half hitch. Repeat so that the rope turns twice around itself. This will eventually be where the carabiner is placed.
  6. Let the free ends of the rope fall to the ground, dangling in front of you.
  7. Reach between your legs from behind and grab each end of the rope in the adjacent hand.
  8. Bring the ends up to the outside edges of your back and tuck the ends under the rope at your waist from the bottom and over.
  9. Simultaneously squat and pull on the rope ends to tighten the seat as much as possible.  Repeat this step until the seat is sufficiently tight.
  10. To maintain the tension, run the ends under themselves from back to front, creating a loop around the waist rope directed back to the front.
  11. Tie the two rope ends into a square knot off-center to the left (to avoid snagging the line you are attaching to).

This should be uncomfortably tight around your body but not cutting off circulation, and certainly not squeezing… sensitive… regions.  After you’re all tied up, attach a carabiner to the wrap of ropes at the front of your body and then attach it to the line and your ready to go.

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Author: Adrian

Adrian Hannah is a system administrator and poor college student at Michigan Technological University. He currently resides in Hancock, MI where he observes the outside world and puts in his two cents.