Hammerschlagen – a How-To Guide to Play for America On Tap
Ready to sample 250 beers from across America at the 2nd annual America on Tap? Beer, music, classes on food pairing, and yard games; the most anticipated of which is Hammerschlagen. What is Hammerschlagen?
Well, other than an awesome German word, it's a nail driving competition, as in:
Because nothing says "good idea" more than getting slightly tipsy and trying to hit the head of a nail with a blacksmith's hammer.
According to Wikipedia, the rules are fairly straight forward:
Each player is assigned a nail. Each player's turn consists of a single swing at their nail with the wedge end of the hammer. Prior to swinging, the player must rest the wedge-end of the hammer on the log next to their nail. The hammer must be gripped behind the line on the hammer and with one hand (female players have the option of using both hands). The swing must be done in one continuous up and down motion.
Frequently, a player will bend their nail in such a way as to make driving it further nearly impossible. In this case, the player may use their turn to make a single-motion swing at the nail from the side in an attempt to straighten the nail. You are not required to stand in the same place for the entire game. Often it is necessary to switch sides of the log to get a better angle on your nail.
The object is to be the first one to pound in one's own nail. To win, the head of the nail must be flush with or below the surface of the wood.
So much fun, you just might need a safe word. Check out the video below for a full demonstration, and make sure you've got your tickets to this year's America on Tap!