Heavy athletics refer to the athletic events which require significant strength and power and include stone-throwing, weight tossing, hammer-throwing, caber turning, and sheaf tossing.
Weight for Height & Distance
The 56lb. weight for height is tossed over a cross bar with one hand. Three attempts are allowed at each height. If the thrower misses all three tries at one height, then he is out of the competition. The 56lb. weight for distance can be either block or spherical shaped with links and a handle and is thrown with one hand in a 4’6″ x 9′ throwing area. One foot must be kept inside this area or the throw is a foul.
The Open Stone Put is called “open” style because any style of putting is allowed with the spin and glide styles being the most popular. The stone usually weighs between 16 and 22 pounds and the throwing area is a box 4’6″ wide and 7’6″ long. The thrower must keep one foot inside this area or the throw is a foul. The Braemar Stone Put uses a heavier stone, usually between 22 and 28 pounds, and it must be put from a standing position.
The sheaf is a 16 or 20 pound burlap or plastic bag stuffed with either chopped rope, straw, or mulch. The sheaf is tossed over a cross bar with a pitch fork. Three attempts are allowed at each height. If the thrower misses all three tries at one height, the he or she is out of the competition.
The 22 lb. Hammer Throw & 16 lb. Hammer Throw
The hammer has a lead or steel head with a bamboo or rattan handle affixed through a hole in the head. The athlete stands behind the trig with his back to the throwing area, winds the hammer around the head and releases over the shoulder. The athlete’s feet must remain in a fixed position until the hammer is released. Boots with blades attached to the front of them are usually worn to keep the feet on the ground and in a fixed position.
The Caber is a tree that has been cut and trimmed down so one end is slightly wider than the other. It can vary in length from 16 to 22 feet and between 100 and 180 pounds. The thrower hoists the caber up and cups the small end in his hands. He then takes a short run with the caber, stops, and pulls the caber so that the large end hits the ground and the small end flips over to face away from the thrower. The caber is scored for accuracy as though the thrower is facing the 12:00 position on a clock face, 12:00 being a perfect toss.