Diving head-first into the world of competitive logrolling can be exciting and really fun, but at the same time, it can be a bit confusing and nerve-wracking. If you or your child are ready to start taking your logrolling a bit more seriously and up the game, continue reading for suggestions, tips, and answers to commonly-asked questions that will lead you to success in the sport.
In tournaments, who will I be competing against?
Every tournament is a bit different depending on the organization it is affiliated with and number of athletes registered, however most amateur logrolling tournaments follow the following set of competitive divisions;
U7 (Coed 7 and Under), 8-10 Girls, 8-10 Boys, 11-13 Girls, 11-13 Boys, 14-17 Girls, 14-17 Boys, and Adult Sport (Coed 16 and up).
Like most sports, divisions in logrolling are normally split into age and gender to prevent athletes of much different sizes and experiences from competing against one another.
Do I need specific shoes to be a better logroller?
Currently, there are no shoes created specifically for logrolling use. However, there are many tennis shoes recommended by professional athletes and coaches.
Currently, the most commonly-used shoe in competition with carpeted logs are Merrell barefoot shoes. These shoes have a grippy sole and are very flexible.
If Merrells aren’t for you, there are endless varieties of different shoes equipped for logrolling. Other commonly-used shoes include multiple models from Adidas, Nike, and New Balance. The very best logrolling shoes for both carpeted and synthetic logs include a sole that provides traction, supports the foot and ankle to prevent injury, and is flexible enough to wrap around the log. Look for a shoe that you think will feel comfortable in the water and will suit your athletic style. If you ever feel a consistent pain or cramp in your feet, ankles, or shins, it is time to look for a new pair of shoes!
Now that I’m really taking logrolling seriously, what can I do to work harder?
Every athlete has a different body and mind, so training varies from person to person. For almost every logroller, footwork is number one. Find ways to enhance your speed such as footwork drills or using an agility ladder. For rollers who have a stronger build and prefer to rely on power in competition, lower body-focused lifting is certainly essential. Logrolling is also a sport that requires immense strength from the abdominal muscles, so incorporating core exercises such as planks or leg raises into a workout routine will be a great asset to any logroller. Good off-season conditioning can consist of lifting, running, biking, or even swimming. If you don’t know much about exercise outside of logrolling, look for some fun conditioning classes at your local gym!
Though gym and home workouts are a fantastic way of becoming a top-level logroller, nothing beats being on a log. Most programs offer classes and practices for all levels of logrollers multiple times per week, so take advantage of all of the log time you can grasp. Get to know other rollers of all ages and levels and find training partners that you know will benefit your logrolling experience!
Interested in purchasing a log to use any time you want? Check out a few great websites to get you headed towards rolling on your own:
Helpful and challenging individual drills include quick transitions from backstep to frontstep, sprints on backstep and frontstep, and rolling as long as you possibly can to improve endurance.
I’m ready to compete as much as possible. Where can I find out more about tournaments I am eligible to compete in?
In recent years, logrolling has expanded into all regions of the U.S. and there are open tournaments at the youth, collegiate, and adult levels affiliated with multiple organizations. To learn about tournaments for amateur kids and adults in the Midwest, head to couleeregionlogrolling.com.
How well am I going to do once I really start getting to work?
Each division has waves of weaker rollers and waves of stronger rollers. If you are willing to dedicate yourself to the sport as much as possible, you will most likely find success quickly. If it doesn’t work out in the beginning, don’t sweat it. Developing the skill set, muscular strength, and endurance to be a top-level roller takes time and patience. Keep working hard and your results will start to become more and more evident!
I want to become a professional logroller. How do I go about it?
Currently, the United States Logrolling Association hosts a full professional tournament series each summer that is open to any adult confident in their logrolling ability. If you’re a current competitor in the U17 divisions or lower and plan on competing professionally, you are eligible to declare pro status in writing between the ages of 16 and 18. Athletes who rank in the adult sport level and plan on stepping up to the professional scene are eligible to declare pro whenever they feel ready. Before turning pro, make sure that you are fully confident that you have the skill set to compete at an elite level and that you are willing to dedicate a great amount of time and energy toward your training.
Don’t be afraid to enjoy the ride!
Every experienced logroller has had ups and downs in their career. Sometimes, athletes who have been around logrolling since a young age grow up with a big rival who ends up quitting in their teens or early 20s. Others don’t even place in a tournament until their teens or early 20’s. Allow yourself to love the sport and the competitive environment and surround yourself with people who support you and encourage you to be the best you can be. The sport always gives back.