A number of people can sit on desk chairs, most can roll round the office on them, but only a few can use them as sports equipment. And the “Varus Helden” from Melle rank among these rare few. The company team from Assmann office furniture played last weekend at the German Chair-Hockey Masters in Bremen. Assmann just narrowly missed making it into the final sixteen of this unique sporting and charity event from Businessroom Escortier BKE Fislage, now in its seventh edition.
At the start of this customer event in 2007 only eight teams took part, compared to the 1,000 sports enthusiasts from all over Germany taking part just ten years later in this unusual athletic test of strength. “It was already our fifth time taking part. We knew after the first time that we would definitely be coming here again. It’s simply so much fun to compete in this crazy sport against business partners and customers and to celebrate the good cause together”, claimed area sales manager Walter Themann. Because it is definitely not only the sporting success that takes priority at the Chair-Hockey Masters; networking is at least as important. The Office Chair Hockey Masters has been a major charity event for some time. So in addition to a new Chair-Hockey champion and a number of good conversations among business partners, who have long since established friendships on their desk chairs following the big finale, the children’s charity organisation Bremer Fonds e.V. could also look forward to receiving all the proceeds from the tournament. In the past ten years the Masters has accumulated over 40,000 euros for charitable causes.
The atmosphere in hall seven at the Messe Bremen was fantastic. The crowd cheered wildly for every goal from the amateur players on their atypical sports equipment. Each team has to be made up of at least eight players, including two women. The game is played with four players on the field, at least one of whom must be a female player. The main rules are that both hands have to remain on the stick and the players may not get up from their chairs. So you need sitting power and a feel for the ball. And the “Varus Helden” had done their homework in both categories. After a clear 4:1 victory against the “Chairmen” in their first match, the team was narrowly beaten 2:3 by “Schönes Frisch-Fisch” and won their final match of the qualifying round against “The Untaxables” 2:1. In the intermediate round, the “Varus Helden” from Melle then had to concede victory with 1:3 to the subsequent Masters winners, the “Chairleader” team from Fraunhofer IFAM.
Athletic performances aside, the Chair-Hockey company sportsmen and women from Assmann stated with a twinkle in their eye that the tournament should by all means be taken as serious hockey. And if there were an obligatory moose test for desk chair manufacturers, the German Chair-Hockey Masters in Bremen would be the perfect place for a genuine test of strength combined with safety. Everyone could agree on that.
The “Varus Helden” are Björn Brüggemann, Dirk Ahlemeier, Markus Gangei, Matthias Niekamp, Michael Neumann, Julia Krieger, Melanie Krüger, Andre Koch, Felix Greive and Timo Schröder. The team was supported by Dirk Aßmann, Kersten Fischhöfer, Walter Themann, Markus Witte and Sven Vennemann.