Posted by James Rider
It is no secret that students on campus often don flannel, but who would have thought they would be going full-out lumberjack in the athletic center pool? This year, the Outing Club is offering a chance for students to try logrolling once a week in the open swim area of the pool, and many students are seizing the opportunity to try this unique sport.
"Logrolling is a sparring sport," said Will Hoeschler '14, who started Skidmore Logrolling. "Two people compete on opposite sides of the log to try to knock each other off the log by spinning it in different directions. Normally it's a three out of five match."
Hoeschler started Skidmore Logrolling based on a passion that he developed earlier in his life. "I started [logrolling] when I was four years old," said Hoeschler. "My mom is a seven-time world champion, and she taught my sisters and I how to roll."
Most of Skidmore's logrollers are still in the training phase. At last Sunday's practice rollers learned how to get up on the log, find their center of gravity and get it rolling with short, choppy steps. "We probably get around five or six people who come consistently, and newcomers are always filtering in," Hoeschler said.
The students involved with Skidmore Logrolling have found themselves both thrilled and challenged.
"Its looks easy, but it proves to be quite difficult," said Henrey Faebre '16.
"It's like you're a little kid trying to learn a new sport," agreed Will Clark '16.
"It's a great workout," said Gokul Bakshi '14. "It's a lot of cardio. I can feel it in my abs and legs especially."
The College's 12-foot log, which is optimized for beginners to learn the sport, includes a strap-on rudder to slow the log's motion, and carpeting for added grip. "The log is made out of Western Red Cedar, the most buoyant type of wood," said Hoeschler.
Hoeschler hopes to bring a Keylog to campus soon. "It's the first ever synthetic logrolling log," he explained. "Its only weighs sixty pounds, making it more portable. When it's filled with water, it has all the characteristics of a real log."
Hoeschler has been working tirelessly to insure that Logrolling at Skidmore goes competitive. His sisters started a logrolling program at Middlebury College in 2002 as a PE class. "The hope is that they will come down for some type small tournament between the schools in December," said Hoeschler.
Those interested are encouraged to join the Logrolling Club Facebook page, contact Hoeschler, or simply come to a practice at the athletic center pool at any of the times announced on the page.