Swapping rugby for timbersports

Four rugby players from Leicester Tigers took on timbersports -- an extreme sport that involves chopping and sawing wood at speed.

Posted: Jun 30, 2018 2:38 PM
Updated: Jun 30, 2018 2:38 PM

Chopping logs is a piece of cake for lumberjacks, but four pro rugby players found brute force alone doesn't cut it.

The quartet of Tatafu Polata-Nau, Greg Bateman, Valentino Mapapalangi and Chris Baumann recently tried their hands at timbersports -- an extreme sport that involves sawing and chopping wood at speed using various techniques.

It may sound easy, but timbersports requires a unique combination of strength and careful precision. One wrong move could chop off a toe.

"I've got new respect for timbersports," said Leicester Tigers hooker Polata-Nau, who has won 82 caps for Australia.

"With a lot of things you watch on TV, it looks quite easy but going through it is actually quite difficult.

"For example, I didn't realize how accurate you have to be with the underhand wood chop because one small slip to the side and you can chop your big toe off. I guess it's more about finesse as opposed to using muscular strength."

American Baumann reckons he may have caught the timbersports bug.

"I definitely have new-found respect for it," he said. "I can try and get into it a little bit once rugby's done, which might be this next year, who knows?"

Timbersports has its origins in Australia in the 19th century when lumberjacks would challenge each other to get through their work with most speed and skill.

READ: England can't offer coach Eddie Jones 'unconditional' support
READ: Why Ireland is learning to love rugby sevens

It wasn't until 1985 that it was formulated into a professional competition in the US, and today events are held on four continents with more than 2,000 athletes competing worldwide.

More than 20 million people annually are thought to watch the STIHL Timbersports Series, which includes six disciplines -- three with an axe and three with a saw.

The World Championships will be held for the first time in the UK this year in Liverpool from October 19-20.

Visit cnn.com/rugby for more newsm features and videos

Find out how the four Tigers players got on in the video at the top of the page.

Huntsville
Scattered Clouds
76° wxIcon
Hi: 87° Lo: 70°
Feels Like: 76°
Florence
Scattered Clouds
76° wxIcon
Hi: 86° Lo: 72°
Feels Like: 76°
Fayetteville
Broken Clouds
75° wxIcon
Hi: 87° Lo: 69°
Feels Like: 75°
Decatur
Scattered Clouds
76° wxIcon
Hi: 86° Lo: 70°
Feels Like: 76°
Scottsboro
Overcast
75° wxIcon
Hi: 87° Lo: 70°
Feels Like: 75°
WAAY Radar
WAAY WAAY-TV Cam
WAAY Temperatures

Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Confirmed Cases: 44375

Reported Deaths: 984
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Jefferson5221152
Montgomery4127103
Mobile4080134
Tuscaloosa228842
Marshall171110
Madison14307
Lee138437
Shelby128423
Morgan11025
Walker93924
Elmore92514
Franklin89514
Dallas8809
Baldwin8649
Etowah73913
DeKalb7195
Butler63328
Chambers62927
Autauga60712
Tallapoosa59169
Russell5520
Unassigned50323
Houston4964
Limestone4950
Lauderdale4906
Lowndes47221
Cullman4524
Pike4295
Colbert3956
St. Clair3822
Coffee3772
Bullock36910
Covington3587
Calhoun3545
Escambia3506
Barbour3492
Hale31121
Talladega3097
Marengo30211
Wilcox2918
Dale2880
Sumter28512
Clarke2746
Jackson2732
Winston2583
Chilton2462
Blount2351
Monroe2352
Pickens2356
Marion22413
Conecuh2097
Randolph2069
Choctaw19512
Macon1949
Bibb1901
Greene1868
Perry1771
Henry1343
Crenshaw1253
Washington1097
Lawrence1080
Cherokee977
Geneva800
Lamar771
Fayette701
Clay652
Coosa581
Cleburne361
Out of AL00

Tennessee Coronavirus Cases

Confirmed Cases: 51316

Reported Deaths: 645
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Shelby11793200
Davidson11089122
Rutherford298735
Hamilton278135
Sumner161052
Trousdale14985
Williamson131315
Out of TN11857
Knox11717
Wilson94117
Putnam8837
Robertson83411
Sevier8043
Bradley7073
Lake6920
Tipton6455
Unassigned6351
Bledsoe6201
Bedford5705
Montgomery5547
Macon4654
Maury3543
Hardeman3434
Hamblen3404
Fayette3172
Madison2992
Loudon2871
Rhea2860
Dyer2511
McMinn23718
Cheatham2301
Blount2273
Dickson2090
Cumberland1814
Washington1650
Lawrence1636
Lauderdale1453
Anderson1422
Monroe1406
Jefferson1360
Gibson1291
Smith1201
Coffee1190
Sullivan1172
Obion1122
Hardin1087
Greene1032
Cocke940
Haywood922
Marshall911
Franklin873
Wayne860
Hickman800
Warren760
Marion734
McNairy730
White703
DeKalb670
Lincoln640
Weakley641
Grundy621
Overton621
Roane620
Giles601
Carter591
Hawkins572
Unicoi550
Campbell481
Carroll471
Henderson460
Claiborne450
Polk450
Henry440
Johnson440
Grainger420
Sequatchie420
Crockett383
Cannon370
Chester340
Perry340
Meigs320
Humphreys281
Jackson270
Morgan271
Stewart230
Decatur220
Fentress220
Union180
Clay170
Scott170
Houston150
Benton131
Moore120
Van Buren80
Hancock60
Lewis60
Pickett60

 

 

Community Events