Update: Hammer Throw Event Prohibited Beginning Next Season

(Image via the 2018 Ohio High School Hammer Championships)

Photo Credit: Christian Lisle/MileSplit

Columbus, OH -- Notably, once the 2025 outdoor track and field campaign commences, there will be a significant change in how meet schedules are operated, which will particularly impact the throws athletes, throws coaches and other enthusiasts of the throws discipline.

MileSplit Ohio has learned that the hammer throw event will not be contested at any state association sanctioned track and field meet beginning next season.  

On Saturday evening, the Ohio High School Athletic Association (OHSAA) sent out their monthly memo via email to the state's athletic directors and track & field and cross country coaches and among the updates for track and field was bullet point number one: "Hammer throw is now a prohibited event in Ohio."

While further context regarding the update wasn't contained in the email, the decision was made due to overarching safety concerns for athletes, spectators and other event stakeholders. 

We reached out to BJ Duckworth, OHSAA Sport Administrator and Director of Officiating Development for Track and Field and Cross Country, for further insight on the development. 

"I will say it was not a decision that was taken lightly. We had to balance giving athletes the ability to compete and possibly continue after high school and the safety issues posed to officials, meet volunteers, athletes and spectators," Duckworth said.  

"Ultimately after conversations with multiple stakeholders including the NFHS, officials and coaches this was the route we felt was in the best interest of all involved," Duckworth said.

To clarify, the decision made by the OHSAA will not impact the ability for the popular Ohio High School Hammer Championships from continuing, as the meet is not affiliated in any way with the state association. 

However, it will present the issue of where the hammer throw athletes will practice and compete and who will coach them during the timeframe of the OHSAA outdoor season. 

The 2024 edition of the annual Ohio High School Hammer Championships took place on June 2nd at Wilmington College