If you’re looking for a new, exciting hobby, axe throwing may be just what you’re looking for. It’s the perfect way to unleash your inner lumberjack, and it’s a great way to get some exercise too. But before you start throwing axes around, there are a few things you need to know. In this article, we’ll teach you the basics of axe throwing, from how to find a good venue to how to aim properly. We’ll also give you some tips on safety and etiquette. So read on, and learn everything you need to know about axe throwing for beginners!
How to find a good axe throwing venue
If you are a beginner, it might be hard to understand what to look for in a venue, so I’ve put together a quick list of things to check out before booking a venue.
- Look for a place that is indoors and has targets set up that are built into the wall
- Make sure they have coaches and offer lessons for all groups
- Make sure the venue is well-lit and has good ventilation
- Ensure their lanes have metal fencing and protection between each throwing lane
- Check to see if they are officially a part of an axe throwing organization like WATL or IATF
Another big one to do is to check their reviews on Google. Make sure there are a good number of reviews, not just 2 or 3. If they are overwhelmingly positive but it still seems a little sketchy, then look at the reviews that provided between 2 and 4 stars. These 2 to 4-star reviews or much less likely to be biased since 1 star reviews tend to be from competitors (or crazy people), and 5-star reviews could just be from the owner’s mother. If these reviews seem solid, then you have found a good venue.
What to wear
The most important thing is to wear closed-toed shoes. Most venues won’t allow you to throw if you have flip-flops on, or they will make you wear crocs that they keep at the venue for when people don’t have the right footwear. Beyond shoes, the best thing to wear is comfortable clothes that you can move around easily in. Many people like to wear t-shirts and jeans or sweats. You want to avoid anything that is too baggy since it could get caught on something while you are throwing. We have a whole post that dives into detail on exactly what you should wear when you go axe throwing.
What to expect when you go to an axe throwing venue
Most venues will set you up with an axe throwing coach who will help teach you the basics of how to throw an axe and the point system. They will also teach you how to throw safely, so you don’t hurt yourself or others. They will also walk you through form and technique to make sure you can brag to your friends about all the bullseyes you hit.
Axe Throwing Form for Beginners
Since we are focused on helping beginners here, maybe even first-time throwers, we are going to focus on the basics. Once you nail these down, you will be good to learn more about all the best axe throwing tips and tricks.
How to stand
Image axe throwing is like any other sports, football or baseball. If you are right-handed, you plant with your right foot and step with your left foot when you throw. The same is true with axe throwing. If you are right-handed, then you want to step with your left foot towards the target while you throw. This will make you as stable as possible and make it much easier to aim. Don’t worry about the distance you are from the target until you have thrown several axes. Your axe throwing coach will help you adjust how far to stand, which helps your axe land better on the board.
Your axe throwing step
When you step to throw your axe you should be stepping with the opposite foot you are throwing with. All you need to do is take a normal stride as if you are just casually walking toward the board. There is no need for you to try and step extra far to get closer in fact, that will just make your throw harder to repeat.
How to throw an axe
Most people have axe throwing all wrong. They think it’s all about muscle and channeling your inner Viking warrior. The big mistake most people make is throwing the axe as hard as they can and trying to muscle it into the board. They forget that the axe is sharp and going to cut into the wood even if it isn’t going 100mph.
The correct way to throw an axe for a beginner is to imagine you are throwing a dart. Start with your arm fully extended with the axe head pointing at the board, then just bend your arm at the elbow back a little past a 90-degree angle, step, and release. This is a simple and easy motion no need to throw your back into it or wind up like a pitcher. Just a simple elbow and wrist flick should get the job done.
Beginner Mistakes to Avoid
- Throwing it as hard as you can
- Not listening to your axe throwing coach
- Stepping with the wrong foot
- Stepping unnaturally far
- Drinking too much
- Not drinking enough (I mean, hey, you might not be a biking warrior, but a little bit of mead does help)
Have the right mentality
Most people think they are great athletes and will immediately be great at axe throwing, but the truth is that axe throwing is a skill that can take time to pick up. Be open to learning from your coaches and new advice. Every axe thrower I’ve run into is always excited to help out a beginner!
Don’t be afraid to try new things and experiment, but most importantly, have fun.