National Axe Throwing Federation

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National Axe Throwing Federation (NATF)
National Axe Throwing Federation (NATF)
The Wilson Cup (center), awarded annually to the winner of the National Axe Throwing Championship.

The National Axe Throwing Federation (NATF) is an organization established in 2016 with global membership that seeks to establish competitive rules and safety standards for the sport of axe throwing.[1][2][3]

Today, the NATF represents the sport of axe throwing on behalf of over 4500 league members in over 55 cities and 7 countries, with a mandate to promote safety, sportsmanship and competitive protocol. [4] Our leagues culminate in the National Axe Throwing Championship (NATC) to award the Wilson Cup, and over $16,500 in prize money and charitable donation.


Scoring includes a three-round match system where five axes are thrown per round. The first player to win two of three rounds wins. Scoring is determined by where you strike your axe into the target. The targets under NATF have a black bullseye ring, followed by a red ring, and then a blue ring. The scoring is 5, 3, and 1 point respectively. Additionally, there are green dots in the corner, known as “Clutch,” and must be called in advance during the final throw of a match (worth 7 points). Point designation is based on where the majority of the blade lands and sticks.[5]

Current Member Organizations[edit]

National Axe Throwing Championship[edit]

The axe throwing league calendar culminates at the National Axe Throwing Championship (NATC), where league players compete for the Wilson Cup. The NATC takes place in 2 stages of competition in January and February of each year. The final stage takes place during the annual All-Star Weekend, together with other axe throwing events including the Winter Skillz competition and the Axe Prom dinner and awards ceremony.

The Red Door Family Shelter Donation
The Red Door Family Shelter Donation

Charitable Support[edit]

The 2018 All-Star Weekend was presented by Beau's All Natural Brewing Co. and NATC tournament helped to raise proceeds of $9,766.92 for donation to the Red Door Family Shelter. The NATF is currently planning the 8th annual National Axe Throwing Championship to be held from February 17th-18th, 2019.

NATC Winners[edit]

Winners of the NATC are awarded the Wilson Cup, which is named after the NATF's Commissioner, Matt Wilson, who together with a small group of friends pioneered the sport of urban axe throwing in his Toronto backyard, dating back to 2006.[6]

From 2012 - 2016 the National Axe Throwing Championship was known as the annual Champions League tournament for eligible competitors from the Backyard Axe Throwing League. Past Champions League winners include:

  • 2013-16 Stefan Herda
  • 2012-13 Jari Salovaara
  • 2011-12 Dave Michna
NATF Competitive Regions
NATF Competitive Regions

NATF Competitive Regions[edit]

The NATF consists of 7 North American regions and 1 International region to support local axe throwing competition, which are continually evolving based on growth of National Axe Throwing Federation membership.


The National Axe Throwing Federation was founded by Matt Wilson and COO, Brian Simmons, from BATL | The Backyard Axe Throwing in 2016.[7] The National Axe Throwing Federation fosters the growth of the sport of axe throwing through league competition, which has expanded to over 50 cities globally.[7]


  1. ^ Heller, Karen (September 30, 2016). "Competitive axe-throwing is an actual thing, and apparently it's best done with beer". The Washington Post. Retrieved December 22, 2016.
  2. ^ Delean, Paul (November 7, 2016). "Axe-throwing is suddenly all the rage in Montreal". The Gazette. Montreal. Retrieved December 22, 2016.
  3. ^ Bosker, Bianca (September 2016). "Big in Canada: Throwing Axes for Fun". The Atlantic. Retrieved December 22, 2016.
  4. ^ Locklin, Kristy (October 10, 2017). "Axe-throwing on the cutting edge of entertainment". Crain's Pittsburgh. Montreal. Retrieved November 2, 2017.
  5. ^ Mitka, Nate (January 2017). "Trend: Hatchet-Throwing Leagues On The Rise". Gear Junkie. Retrieved November 23, 2017.
  6. ^ Fatima, Sahar (June 2013). "Trend: Where burying the hatchet can gain you points". The Globe and Mail. Retrieved December 28, 2017.
  7. ^ a b Scordo, Lizbeth. "Taking an Axe to Dull Evenings". The Red Bulletin.

External links[edit]