Kyle Ḵaayák’w Worl
Tlingit, Deg Hit’an Athabascan and Yup'ik
Kyle Ḵaayák’w Worl is an award-winning Arctic Sports athlete and coach currently residing in Juneau, Alaska. Worl is Tlingit of the Lukaax̱.ádi clan, Deg Hit’an Athabascan and Yup'ik.
Over his 13 year career in the sport he has won over 100 medals, traveling through Alaska, Canada and Greenland to participate in various competitions. He is credited for spurring a renaissance in Arctic Sports in southeast Alaska as the first coach for Juneau in over 25 years to bring a team to the Native Youth Olympics in 2018.
Along with training and coaching year-round in Alaska, Worl travels across the world to share Arctic Sports, including the Riddu Riddu Festival in Norway, Orenda Art International Gallery in Paris, and Smithsonian National Museum of the American Indian in Washington, D.C.
Currently, Worl works with the Central Council Tlingit & Haida Indian Tribes of Alaska as the Wellness Coordinator, overseeing a region-wide Traditional Games program.
A few of his accolades include being featured in October 2019 Men’s Health Magazine; 2018 & 2019 NYO Games Alaska Healthy Coach Award; 2021, 2018, 2017 & 2016 World Eskimo Indian Olympics Outstanding Athlete Award.
Arctic Sports are a collection of Indigenous games based on hunting and survival skills of the north. The games trained both physical and mental abilities that allowed the indigenous people of Alaska, Canada, Greenland and Chukotka to thrive in the Arctic for millennia. Today athletes from across the Arctic and beyond carry on the tradition of the games in events such as Native Youth Olympics, World Eskimo-Indian Olympic, and Arctic Winter Games.
Photos: Nobu Koch, Sealaska Heritage and Greg Lincoln, Delta Discovery.