Axe Throwing Hatchet Rules
In recent years, axe throwing has experienced a considerable amount of growth around the world. The sport’s novel and unique nature, coupled with its distinct level of exciting danger, has attracted many new players to the sport, both on the casual and competitive levels. With so many people participating in the game, it’s good to know that this level of danger is taken very seriously by both the professional axe throwing leagues and casual establishments.
Axe Throwing Axe Regulations
To keep their players safe, the organizing bodies of axe throwing have set out a comprehensive set of rules and regulations ensuring that all conducted games remain safe and fun for everyone involved. An important part of this process is regulating the axes themselves.
Though axe customization is prevalent among axe throwers, some axe characteristics might give one player an unfair advantage over another. Given that they are both the most dangerous part of the sport and the main thing that play centers around, competitive rulesets often include some level of axe standardization to ensure that everyone is participating with the same uniform equipment, ensuring everybody stays safe and remains on a level playing field.
To maintain a strict standard of safety and fairness, the World Axe Throwing League maintains the following regulations for accepted axes in their league rules:
- The blade of an axe (specifically, the flared, sharp section that cuts into the wood) cannot measure longer than 4 inches between its longest points.
- Each axe can only have one blade. Extra blades and spikes outside of the hatchet’s scoring area are not permitted.
- The handle of an axe cannot be longer than 19 inches (or 48.26 centimeters) or shorter than 12 inches (30.48 centimeters) when measured from the bottom of the handle to the top of the metal “head” on the axe’s top, where the handle is embedded.
- Handles can be made from any material (though some rulesets require axe handles can only be made of wood).
- In total, an axe cannot weigh more than three pounds (1.36 kilograms).
- The metal part, or “head,” of an axe must be a single piece of metal affixed tightly to the axe handle. Loosened axe heads pose a significant safety risk and cannot be entered into any official events without explicit approval.
If a player’s axe is broken during a game, they are allowed one minute to provide the match’s judge with a non-broken axe. The judge will inspect the axe to ensure it matches official regulations. If it does, the player is granted one practice throw, and play continues. If the player fails to provide a replacement, their remaining throws for the game are counted as zero.
WATL Axes and Knock-Offs
The World Axe Throwing League (WATL), the most prominent governing organization in the world of professional axe throwing, is also one of the most important axe manufacturers. WATL uses its unique position as the sport’s main league organizer to also provide a lineup of professional-grade axes, which are very well-respected in the community and used as equipment within the league itself and some affiliates.
Unfortunately, due to the success of the official WATL axe lineup, several knock-off sellers have popped up onto the throwing axe market in recent years. These sellers often produce inferior copies of stolen designs, usually at a reduced cost. Given the obvious issues with these knock-offs, as well as their frequent recurrence within WATL games and affiliates, WATL has enacted a very strict zero-tolerance policy against them.
Any thrower found to have knowingly purchased an unofficial WATL replica could be subject to suspension, forced forfeits, or other official disciplinary actions. WATL has also clarified that this ban does not extend to any non-WATL axes that fit the league specifications; it is simply meant as a means to protect their community and intellectual property.