Purl jam: Finland hosts heavy metal knitting championship

The competitors of the first Heavy Metal Knitting world championship react on stage, Thursday, July 11, 2019 in Joensuu, Finland. With stage names suc

The competitors of the first Heavy Metal Knitting world championship react on stage, Thursday, July 11, 2019 in Joensuu, Finland. With stage names suc

The Japanese team Giga Body Metal react with the trophy after being crowned Heavy Metal Knitting world champions with a show featuring crazy sumo wres

The Japanese team Giga Body Metal react with the trophy after being crowned Heavy Metal Knitting world champions with a show featuring crazy sumo wres

Armed with needles and a yarn of wool, Natalia from Russia competes on stage in the heavy metal knitting world championship, Thursday, Jul. 11, 2019 i

Armed with needles and a yarn of wool, Natalia from Russia competes on stage in the heavy metal knitting world championship, Thursday, Jul. 11, 2019 i

The Japanese team Giga Body Metal perform in the Heavy Metal Knitting world champions with a show featuring crazy sumo wrestlers and team leader Manab

The Japanese team Giga Body Metal perform in the Heavy Metal Knitting world champions with a show featuring crazy sumo wrestlers and team leader Manab

JOENSUU, Finland (AP) — Armed with needles and a yarn of wool, a dozen knitting aficionados have danced to deafening heavy metal music while knitting during an unusual competition in Finland.

The goal of the Heavy Metal Knitting World Championship, which took place Thursday, was quite simple — to showcase knitting skills while dancing to heavy metal music in the most outlandish way possible.

Performers had stage names including Woolfumes, Bunny Bandit and 9" Needles, and they swirled their hair to the fast-paced rhythm of the music.

The competition took place in a packed square in the small town of Joensuu close to the Russian border. Some 200 people gathered to watch the performances, including families with children and heavy metal fans donning leather-jackets.