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All You Need to Know About Axe Throwing

Imagine this:

You're at the end of a hard day at work. It's time to unwind and blow off some steam. You and your co-workers head down to a fun, local venue, enjoy some craft beer, and throw away all that stress and pent-up energy by throwing axes!

Axe throwing is becoming the latest craze in cities across North America, and anyone can participate in this fun activity. All it takes to become good at axe throwing is some practice time in the lane.

Let’s take a look at some of the basics of axe throwing so you can see for yourself what a fun sport this is.

What Is Axe Throwing?

Axe throwing is sport deeply rooted in tradition. Nowadays it's gaining momentum amongst newer generations. In a sense, you can think of it as darts on steroids - and if you’ve ever enjoyed playing darts, this might just be a sport for you.

As the name would imply, the main objective here is to throw an axe and try to hit a target. Simple as that!

Axe throwing is typically a group activity, so we encourage you to visit Lumberjaxe's newest location in Ottawa, Ontario - or Lumberjaxe in Athens, Georgia - with a group of friends, coworkers, family or other folks you'd like to spend more time with!

Axe throwing is an excellent team building exercise ... great for:

  • corporate events
  • birthday parties
  • family reunions

... and much more! In short, the more folks the merrier. You’ll notice that even if you come alone or in a very small group, you’ll probably get invited to join others and play together.

Contrary to popular belief, people participating in axe throwing are actually quite sociable, so you’ll find yourself meeting new people and making new friends in no time.

axe throwing target at lumberjaxe in ottawa ontario canada

Axe Throwing Is Fun & Very Safe

The biggest concern most people have when it comes to axe throwing is safety. There’s really no reason for worry, however.

Axe throwing is a very safe activity!

We always run a safety and instructional demo before your group starts throwing. Our coaches and staff keep a close eye on players at all times, so if they notice even a hint of any reckless behaviour, they react immediately.

Axes are potentially a dangerous weapon, but we ensure a safe environment where everyone can relax and enjoy their time. Safety is of paramount importance at Lumberjaxe, so as long as you’re behaving nicely, there’s nothing to worry about.

Essential Rules of Axe Throwing

Like any good sport, it’s the rules that make axe throwing fun (and competitive).

  • Rule number 1 is to never throw an axe if someone is standing in front of you, or close to the target!
  • Don’t sharpen your blade too much, there’s no need for that
  • Relax and have a good time! ... the rest of the rules generally apply to the points system
  • Every game usually lasts between 2 and 3 hours, depending on the size of your group, and, as it’s expected, you should aim for the target and try to get the highest score (each player gets 10 throws per game)
  • Hitting the center, aka the bullseye, will get you 6 points. 2nd, 3rd, 4th, and 5th rings will get you 4, 3, 2, and 1 point respectively
  • You’ll notice that the target has 2 blue balls as well, located on the 5th ring; those are known as the “kill shots” and are worth 10 points (the catch here is that the kill shot is only available in your 10th throw... hitting it before your final throw will get you only 1 point, matching the value of the ring it’s in)
  • In case your axe hits the line and lands in two rings simultaneously, you’ll get the points for the ring with a higher value
  • One last rule to remember is that your axe must stay in the target for you to get points; if it falls out, you get no points

Sound complicated? Not at all! Once you start throwing, you'll get the hang of it all in no time.

axe throwing with target

How to Throw an Axe Properly

As you play and develop your skills, you’ll learn to throw the axe in such a way that suits you most. But for the time being, it’s a good idea to get a basic understanding of the right posture and grip.

As far as your stance is concerned, you can either stand straight with your feet about a shoulder-width apart, or you can have one foot forward. It’s important that your shoulders are facing the target directly.

To grip the axe properly, you’ll want to hold it with your dominant hand firmly, similarly to how you would hold a baseball bat.

Keep the blade of the axe perfectly straight and facing the target. The blade will determine where the axe will land, so make sure it’s not leaning left or right.

To hit the target, you’ll want to aim about a foot above the bullseye because the weight of the axe will force it to fall down.

At Lumberjaxe, our coaches are always available to help you, so if you ever have any questions or concerns, freely ask them for advice.

different types of axes

The Different Types of Axes Used

Unless you’ve competed in a league, you cannot bring your own axe with you. If you have competed, your axe must follow certain requirements:

  • At least 12” long
  • The blade at 4.75” max
  • No heavier than 2lbs

At our locations, you have access to 3 different types of axes:

  • Standard
  • Hammerhead
  • Full Metal

Standard axes are perfect for beginners as they’re lightweight and easy to throw. Since they’re lighter, they won’t be able to hit the target with as much force and can be prone to bouncing off it.

Hammerhead axes are heavier because of the extra mass at the back of the head. They will stick to the target better, but you’ll need more strength to throw them.

A full metal axe offers the best performance, but its handle is slightly curved, making it a bit more challenging for beginners who aren’t used to this shape.

Axe Throwing Apparel

The only rule here is that you must wear closed-toe shoes. Besides this, you can wear anything you’re comfortable in. Since you’ll be throwing the axe, you’ll need to have more freedom of arm movement, so less restrictive clothing is advised, but it’s all up to you. 

The Bottom Line 

Axe throwing can be enjoyed by anyone who’s strong enough to hold an axe. It's a great time for all - and there's no better time to try your hand at axe throwing than now.

Contact us today to find out more & book your next fun activity - in Ottawa or Athens!