STIHL TIMBERSPORTS® is the original extreme sport and these adrenaline-fuelled competitions might just be the most exciting sport you’ve never heard of!
STIHL TIMBERSPORTS® launched in 1985 in the USA but it has its origins in 19th century Australia, when lumberjacks would compete against each other and the clock outside of work to be the fastest man with an axe or saw.
These days, it has developed into a global competition series where the best competitors use axes and saws to smash their way through wooden blocks in seconds! The standing block chop involves using an axe to cut through a 30cm diameter block and the world record for this is just 11.03 seconds!!
There are six events (or disciplines) in STIHL TIMBERSPORTS®:
The tools used when competing in STIHL TIMBERSPORTS® include custom saws and racing axes which are only used for competitions. The only exception is Stock Saw, which uses a standard, unmodified STIHL MS 661 chainsaw.
It goes without saying that strength is important for this sport, but speed, technique and accuracy are vital too.
You can find out all of the results from previous STIHL TIMBERSPORTS competitions, as well as the schedule for upcoming events in the TIMBERSPORTS database.
In Great Britain, there is are national competitions held annually, including a Pro Championship, a Rookie Championship and a Women's Championship. The women compete in three TIMBERSPORTS® disciplines; the Stock Saw, the Underhand Chop and the Single Buck. The rookies, who are under 25 years old, compete in four; the Stock Saw, Underhand Chop, Single Buck and the Standing Block Chop. Pro athletes must be able to compete in all six TIMBERSPORTS® disciplines.
In all the disciplines, athletes earn points based on their times, with the fastest time achieving the maximum number of points. The overall champion is the one who has accumulated the most points at the end. The fastest athletes also have a chance to compete in international competitions on a global stage too.
If all of this has inspired you to get involved in STIHL TIMBERSPORTS® yourself, we also run a training programme in Great Britain for those people with the most potential. We also hold newcomer’s training days each year in the spring. If you want to find out more or register your interest for future newcomer’s events, please email email@example.com.
Want to find out more about the sport? Watch our TIMBERSPORTS video®.
The international cream of the crop are pitted against each other in a range of formats including the World Trophy, the Individual and Team World Championship, and the Rookie World Championship. National competitions also take place in many countries, including here in Great Britain.
At STIHL TIMBERSPORTS® events, athletes compete in up to six disciplines depending on the competition format. Three disciplines are performed using an axe, three with a saw.
TIMBERSPORTS® places huge demands on athletes. All competitors have attended a series of training camps and demonstrated that they can perform the required disciplines safely. But it’s not just for lumberjacks! All sorts of people take part in TIMBERSPORTS®, so whilst there are some foresters involved in the sport, there are also builders, farmers, engineers, a graphic designer, a salesman and even a lawyer, in the US TIMBERSPORTS® Series!
STIHL TIMBERSPORTS® has a standard set of rules worldwide which applies to all official competitions in the Series. Judges ensure that the competition rules and safety requirements are followed and correctly interpreted.
The competition wood, which is poplar and white pine, is sustainably grown and harvested on certified plantations in Belgium and the Netherlands. They are then peeled so that they are the standard size for competitions and labelled. The labelling is important to keep the competition as fair as possible – each competitor is up against someone who is chopping through a log from the same tree as his. After each competition, the remains of the logs are recycled for biomass.