After you teach your muscles the motion of the long tail cast on, it's not only a fast way to cast on stitches. It also creates a pretty edge and holds it shape well while still having a fair amount of stretch.
Before You Begin
The long tail cast on works niceley in the round, but it can present a problem when working back and forth in rows. When you turn your work over, after casting on, the stitches present themselves as purls. Often, that's not a problem, but sometimes you want to start with a knit row. That's when the reverse, or mirrored, long tail cast on can come in handy.