Highland Games Tradition

Highland Games Tradition

It is believed that Scotland’s Highland Games were created in order to look for the country’s strongest men and to find suitable people to employ within the clan chieftains’ households. The employment positions related to entertainers, dancers, pipers, bodyguards and couriers. Historical records about these events date back to the 11th century. It is, however, important to note that there is an important ancient Celts connection. A number of the robust athletic events are thought to have been originated by ancient Celts for the purpose of testing men’s stamina and strength, as far back as the 3rd or 4th century. Interestingly, there is so much more to find out about.

If you would like to have fun and visit the Scottish Highland games in a wonderful location such as livi, you will be bound to see male and female athletes in traditional Scottish tartan kilts playing athletic contests of tug-o-war, stone put, the hammer throw, and caber tossing.

Caber Toss

This is probably the Highland Games’ most recognised event. A caber is traditionally a 15 to 22 foot long, full-length Larch or Scotch Pine tree trunk log, which can weigh as much as 180 pounds. The athletes have to lift the heavy caber upright and cup the whittled down ends with both hands, and then keep the log balanced against their torso.

When it is balanced, the contestant runs forward for a few meters and then uses his upper torso strength and momentum to hurl this massive trunk high in the air, trying to send it end-over-end in the pathway of the athletes’ running line. The idea is to make the log fall down straight in front of him.

The Hammer Throw

In Scotland, the hammer thrown does not involve using a hammer. It is actually a heavy ball made of metal, which is safely attached to a sturdy 4-foot 2-inch cane or wooden pole. The hammer used by male contestants weighs 22 pounds, whereas the one for women is 16 pounds. The aim of this game is to utilise the pole so they can first swing the heavy ball around their head, so they build up momentum to cast it over their shoulder as far as possible.

Stone Put

In Scotland, a stone put refers to a thrust or push. It is actually a heavy stone of 20 to 26 pounds for male athletes, and 13 to 18 pounds for females, and acts as a substitute for a metallic ball. The technique that is used involves the athlete standing firmly on the spot, and either ‘gliding’ or ‘spinning’ the put within a specific circle, prior to propelling the stone over the shoulder as far away as possible.

Many Scottish Highland Events on an official website are all listed with dates so you can book a trip well in advance.