The Seal Hop is perhaps the most physically and mentally grueling of all the events.
Female contestants assume a push-up position with arms straight and palms flat on the floor. Male contestants must maintain a lowered push-up position, with elbows bent, hands curled and knuckles down, supporting their weight on the heels of the hands and the knuckles.
At the official’s signal, contestants hop—seal-like—across the floor on their hands and toes while maintaining the push-up position. When their shoulders cross a designated marker, athletes must make a 180-degree turn and resume hopping. Athletes will be stopped for pausing and restarting, raising the rump above the shoulders or touching the floor with their knees or stomach.
Upon completing their distance, contestants must remain in position until the judge measures their distance. The athlete who travels the greatest distance is the winner.
The Seal Hop is a variation of the Inuit Knuckle Hop, and used traditionally as a game of endurance and stamina, and for sneaking up on a seal, mimicking the mammal’s movement on the ice.