How to Throw an Axe
At Lumber Jack’s Axe Throwing, we prioritize safety in all that we do. No experience required, our dedicated axe-perts teach each guest how to safely and successfully throw axes! In under an hour, players transform from novice to bull’s eye master. We want to ensure that everyone stays safe, has fun, and is completely comfortable during their experience.
As a precursor to your axe throwing adventure, let’s go over how to throw an axe!
BEFORE WE BEGIN AXE THROWING…
Book your experience
Here at Lumber Jack’s Axe Throwing, we offer two different axe throwing experiences. Free Throw allows you to create your own axe throwing adventure. After we teach you how to throw an axe, you are free to practice on your own.
We also offer The Full Experience. In addition to walking you through a detailed guide to successfully throwing axes, our axe-perts will teach you fun and competitive games! Using the target as a game board, a sharp axe becomes a pawn, a marker, a tic-tac-toe X, and more.
It’s totally down to personal preference, but we definitely recommend The Full Experience to first time guests.
Dress for success!
Before you start throwing, it’s important to understand the proper way to dress for the occasion. Loose clothing and jewelry can be dangerous when around axes. Closed-toed shoes are a MUST, and you definitely want to be able to have your full, comfortable range of motion. At Lumber Jack’s Axe Throwing, we also LOVE flannel shirts, so that’s always a win in our book.
Axe-throwing is a sport, and like all recreational activities, there are some basic safety guidelines that you need to be aware of before starting.
AXE THROWING RULES
When a player is staring down the target and ready to throw, we don’t want anyone else to get in the way. Axe throwing safety starts the moment you step into the lane. One in, one out.
Throw only as instructed.
When we hand you a very sharp axe to throw, we are trusting that you’ll be responsible with it. There’s no need to touch the axe head or axe blade, so keep your fingers away from that sharp edge.
Retrieve the axe only AFTER it has stopped moving!
Whether you stick your axe with a perfect throw, or bounce it off the target board with an over rotated spin, wait until it is no longer moving before you try to grab it.
Do not hand an axe to another player.
Please handle the axes only by the grip and hang them by the axe blade on the special magnets in each lane.
Please don’t show up inebriated or otherwise acting like a jerk.
This one feels self-explanatory. There’s nothing Bad Axe about messing around with axes when you could cause harm to yourself or others.
Our axe-perts will help guide you through the axe throwing basics. Axe throwing is all about momentum – it’s not just about putting all your power behind it. Although strength is important, correct spacing, throwing motion, and focus can make all the difference.
AXE THROWING STANCE
Step on up, all the way up to the throwing line. That line is painted at the perfect distance to optimize axe rotation. Taking a step forward past the line can lead to over rotation, hitting the target with the axe handle, rather than the blade. Same goes for starting your throw too far away: under rotated throws may fall short.
Make sure your feet are shoulder width apart and facing perpendicular to your target.
With your dominant side, take a half step backwards. For example, if you are right handed, you would keep your left foot on the lane line, and that half step backwards with your right foot. It should be a comfortable step. When we throw, we shift our weight from the front, to the back foot. That rocking motion provides some of the momentum needed for throwing axes.
RAISE YOUR AXE
For this example, we will talk through a two handed throw. Two handed throwing is often the easiest to stick, because it really helps keep the axe straight. Grip the axe in your dominant hand, your fist should be in the center of the handle for small axes, and about 3 inches from the bottom for larger axes. (Your axe-pert will help you adjust your grip as necessary.)
Maintain a light grip, definitely don’t white-knuckle your axe! Extend your throwing arm out straight forward in front of you, bringing the flat top of the axe head up to eye level. Keep your elbow locked and ready.
Cover your dominant hand with your other hand, don’t stack them on your axe handle.
Lining up the top of the axe with your target is how to aim for your bull’s eye! More accuracy comes with practice, and this technique is a great place to start. Hold your axe straight up and down, not tilting it toward or away from you. An accurate throw starts with intention.
Take a deep breath and raise your axe up over your head, keeping the blade as straight as possible. The back flat top of the axe should just touch between your shoulders. At the same time, shift your weight from the front foot to the opposite foot. Swing your arms forward, releasing your grip as the axe crosses at eye-level. A perfect throw.
One of the most common mistakes in axe throwing is stopping when the axe leaves your hands. Avoid flicking the axe into the air by following through on your throw. Like swinging a golf club, that momentum creates an entire arc. Continue that forward motion of your swing, even when the axe is out of your hands.
RETRIEVE AND REPEAT
To easily retrieve your axe that is now buried deep in the split wood of your target: simply pull up, and then straight down, repeating until free.
Your axe throwing skills will grow with practice. Most of our guests rely on muscle memory by the end of their first ever hour throwing! It starts to feel really natural, like you are one with the axe, one with the target. Enjoy that satisfying THUNK when the axe hits the board.
It typically takes about 5 minutes to learn how to throw an axe, and less than an hour to start feeling comfortable. Whether you like throwing your axe two handed or one handed, you’re on your way to being an axe-pert yourself.
TAKE CARE OF YOUR THROWING ARM
After your axe throwing session, it’s important to care for your arm, shoulder, and back muscles. Since axe throwing doesn’t require so much force, or a great deal of power, with focus on a solid stance, aim, and follow-through, you shouldn’t be feeling too store the next day! Axe throwing safety goes beyond “don’t try to catch a moving axe:” it also encompasses taking care of your muscles! Doing some light stretches before and after throwing can help relieve stress and tension.
MANAGE YOUR AXE THROWING ADDICTION
It’s super easy to fall in love with axe throwing. Fun, physical, and competitive, there’s really nothing like hitting the perfect bull’s eye in the dead center of your target.
Once you get started, it’s hard to stop! Axe throwing can be addictive in a really good way, but don’t let the fun consume your life. Balance is key!
So, go ahead and have some axe throwing fun, but always remember to be safe and responsible. As Uncle Ben would say, with great power comes great responsibility! Lumber Jack’s is here to help you learn how to throw an axe safely so that you can enjoy this addictive hobby worry-free!
Thanks for reading!
We hope these axe throwing tips prepare you for your adventure with us at Lumber Jack’s Axe Throwing! We can’t wait to see you soon!