The difference between shoes tied with a balanced, neat and self-tightening knot versus those tied with an unbalanced, sloppy and loose knot, is all in how you make your first loop.
Over at Runner's World they've put together an instructional video to go along with an informative article on the difference between Granny Knots and Reef Knots. Well tied shoes are important to runners, but anyone can benefit from the simple change in knot tying-methodology outlined in the video below:
By simply altering the direction of the first loop you make when tying your shoes you can produce a neater knot that is less prone to coming untied. Have a bit of knot tying lore to share? Let's hear about it in the comments.
Fit to be Tied [Runner's World]