Axe Throwing Rules - World Axe Throwing League

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The official rules of
urban Axe Throwing

Competing in a WATL affiliated league? Opening up your own axe throwing facility?
Interested to learn more about the rules of axe throwing? You've come to the right place.
Scroll down to learn the rules.

code of conduct

The mission of The World Axe Throwing League is to promote competition through sportsmanship and fair play. Our leagues/events should be played in a sportsmanship-like manner. Although competition may become intense, we expect our participants to maintain a high degree of sportsmanship up to and after the final throw. As a participant in any WATL tournament or event, you must pledge to:

  • Respect the game, play fairly, and follow all rules and policies.
  • Accept & respect the decisions of WATL officials.
  • Demonstrate good sportsmanship before, during, and after games, win or lose.
  • Be responsible for the sportsmanship of teammates and assist in maintaining a respectful environment for all participants.
  • Be courteous to opposing players, teams, officials, spectators, monitors, or facilitators and treat all players and WATL officials with respect.
  • Help to maintain and keep all equipment and conditions at the facility in good condition.
  • Obey all facility rules, while respecting all equipment, common areas, playing areas, parking areas, and surrounding neighborhoods.
  • Refrain from the use of abusive language or profanity. (Including but not limited to: contemptuous, discriminatory or denigratory words or actions concerning race, colour, language, religion, gender, or sexual orientation
  • Not engage in any behavior which would endanger the health, safety, or well being of any player, official staff member, or spectator.
  • Not engage in verbal, written, or physical threats or abuse aimed at any participant, official, staff member, or spectator.
  • Not initiate a fight, scuffle, or exchange with any individual (including but not limited to: pushing, shoving, punching, kicking, verbal threats or harassment).
  • Not use alcoholic beverages at any location unless permitted by the facility/venue.
  • Not allow, use or encourage illegal drugs at any location.
  • Wear/use all required and issued equipment and/or uniforms.

Sportsmanship

Sports are filled with judgment calls and, as a result, disputes between players, opponents, and staff may occur from time to time. However, it is important that participants respect and handle all disputes that may occur in a civilized manner. WATL has the absolute and sole discretion to investigate and review any and all evidence available to maintain the integrity of the rules & the sport in any match. Protests for player eligibility or rule misapplications/misinterpretations are time-sensitive and must be made before the next throw. Non-throwers do not have the right to argue or challenge any calls made by the league coach or referee.

All decisions made by on-site WATL Officials must be respected and obeyed. Any feedback regarding rules, players, officials, or staff members should be brought to the attention of a WATL Director during normal business hours in written form. Any behavior deemed unacceptable by WATL officials may result in a verbal warning, ejection, suspension, and/or expulsion as outlined below. Repeated Code of Conduct violations by the same player or team could result in an expulsion from the league without refunds. All Code of Conduct violations during and outside of matches will result in disciplinary measures.

Disciplinary Procedure

Upon an offense needing disciplinary action, it is recommended that the WATL official issue disciplinary action in this order:

  • The offending thrower will first receive a verbal warning.
  • Should similar offenses continue a second time then their most recent match points will be brought to 0 and the match will count as a loss.
  • Upon a third offense by the same player, then the offending player will be suspended from the season or tournament.

A WATL official is not required to follow disciplinary measures in this order.

gameplay rules

Section A:
Pre-Game Rules

1. Minimum Age:

  1. WATL does not enforce any age requirement or limit. Each affiliated location is allowed have an age requirement if they so choose. Please contact your local participating league location to inquire about their age rules.

Pre Game Rules

2. Target Quality:

  1. Targets should be relatively new and of sound quality prior to league commencement.

    1. When targets deteriorate to a point where excessive movement or 'wiggling' of the axes occur when they land in the damaged area causing or risking good throws to fall out, the boards should be switched out to ensure fair play.
    2. If a large piece of wood or chunk falls out during play, the player may request to have the board changed but the ultimate decision will fall on the axe throwing referee (coach).
    3. Targets must be sprayed with water from a spray bottle prior to the start of league play.
      1. If boards are continually hard, league members may request to have more water sprayed on the boards.
  1. No-one other than the official coach may alter the boards before, during, or after any match unless authorized by the presiding official.
    1. This includes pulling out pieces of boards, chopping or softening the board with their axe, watering the boards, etc

3. Warm Up Throws:

  1. Players may have up to 5 practice throws prior to their first match.
  2. Players may have 1 practice throw prior to any subsequent matches.
  3. The axe throwing referee will notify players when their match will commence.
  4. The league will allow practice throws before official league start time subject to availability, fairness and consent of referee on premises.

Section B:
Gameplay

  1. Each player is permitted to play only once per week.
    1. If an affiliated location has more than one league running per season the player may only attend one to be recorded officially.
  2. Each league week allows every participant 4 matches.
  3. Each match is played against different opponents, selected at random and consists of the following:
    1. 10 throws per match.
    2. In each match, players will take 5 throws then switch sides.
      1. This ensures fair play when there's varying density in wood.
    3. The winner of the match will be the person with the most points after 10 throws.
    4. In the event of a tie after 10 throws, there will be sudden death:
      1. See Section C Scoring: xi.
  4. The match points and win/loss then be recorded and uploaded to the leaderboards.
  5. After 7 weeks, the 8th and final week of each season will be the playoffs and final match to determine the season champion. See Playoffs section for details.
  6. Each official league run by an axe throwing venue is self-contained and may not be combined with other leagues.
    1. Players may only compete at the venue and league they are registered for. There will be no scores recorded outside of that league or venue for their single registered league.
      1. For example, a player may not compete in week 2 of league at venue A, then compete in week 3 for that same league in venue B.
Season
  1. No wearing earphones while throwing
  2. Pauses in play
    1. A presiding official may call a pause in play for any reason deemed necessary (rules review, confirmation, second opinion, etc...)
    2. Should a Pause in Play occur, all match play must cease immediately and will resume at the discretion of the presiding official, where the pause began.
      1. For Example: If one player has thrown but the opposite player has not and there is a Pause in Play called, the match will resume with the opposite player throwing as normal.
    3. Players may be able to challenge a call or ruling which will create a pause in play
      1. During this call, gameplay will be paused at that moment in time
  3. Throwing in a Wheelchair
    1. For individuals who use wheelchairs, all standard league rules apply with the exception of the foot fault line.
      1. Individuals in wheelchairs must have one wheel behind the 12ft line when throwing in competition play.
      2. Any wheel on the wheelchair is acceptable as long as one of them is behind the 12ft line.

Section C:
Scoring

Points

  1. Scoring Area of Axe
    1. The axe head, blade and cheek up to the front of the eye but not past it.
    2. If there is no visible eye of the axe in the top of the axe head then it counts as where the handle would meet if going straight through. To be determined by the official presiding over the match.
  2. The black line awards points associated with the ring.
  3. 6 points for the bullseye.
  4. 4 points for the 2nd ring.
  5. 3 points for the 3rd ring.
  6. 2 points for the 4th ring.
  7. 1 point for the 5th ring.
  8. 8 points for the Killshot.
  9. If the axe falls before the presiding official scores the axe, the axe is counted as a drop
Axes Scores
Points
  1. Killshot Throw
    1. The Killshot is active for the 5th and 10th throw of the match only. Otherwise it will be treated as if the Killshot is not there.
      1. Before throwing for the Killshot, the player must make clear to the Judge and opponent they intend on throwing for the Killshot.
        1. This is referred to as “calling the Killshot” and activates it for the full 8 points.
        2. The player cannot change their call (Killshot or non-Killshot) once a Judge confirms, for that specific throw.
      2. The Thrower with the higher points must decide to call first. In the case of the tie, either thrower may volunteer to call first.
        1. If neither thrower volunteers to do so the Judge will flip a coin to decide and assign one player as heads, and the other as tails.
    2. The Judge will confirm a Killshot call (or a non-Killshot call) with the throwers prior to a throw being made.
      1. If a throw is made prior to a Judge confirming the call, the throw will be counted as fault.
    3. If the Killshot is called but the players axe does not hit the Killshot, then no points are awarded.
  2. Sudden Death
    1. In the event of a tie after 10 throws in a single match, the match enters into sudden death.
    2. ONLY Killshots are allowed during all sudden death throws.
    3. Players will remain in their respective targets for sudden death throws (no switching of targets required).
    4. Players may not score on the same killshot twice in a row. Players must alternate Killshots.
    5. Both players must throw within 10 seconds of each other but not before Judge confirms that the lane is open.
    6. In the event that both players miss the Killshot during Sudden Death, a measuring tape or accurate measuring device will be used to measure the distance from the closest valid scoring area of the axe head to the closest edge of the Killshot. The player with the shortest distance will be awarded the match.
      1. If Player 1 has an axe that has dropped and Player 2 misses the Killshot, but is on the board, Player 2 will be awarded the match.
      2. If a player touches their axe before a measurement is made, the match is awarded to the opposing player.
    7. Points are not counted or tallied during sudden death.
  3. Tallying Scores
    1. When the axe is resting in its final place it will be scored.
    2. The points from the axe will be determined by where the scoring area of the axe head meets the surface of the wood that the axe head is embedded into.
    3. All scores must be verified by a presiding official or Judge. If a presiding official is also competing in the league then their scores must be verified by another third party.
      1. No thrower regardless of position in venue or WATL may submit scores for themselves without verification from a third party.
    4. If a thrower touches any part of the axe before the presiding official announces the score, the throwers points are marked as 0.
    5. If the score is too close to make an accurate call by eye, the presiding official will benefit the thrower and give the higher points.
    6. If a thrower attempts to touch any part of their opponents axe at any time during a match without permission they will be suspended from the match.

Technicalities

  1. A Break (breaking) is defined as when the surface of the axe is embedded in the wood and has the marked surface of the target area visible on both sides of the axe head.
  2. If the axe breaks multiple sections of the target simultaneously, then the player is awarded the points for the higher valued section.
    1. Axes must be inside the black line in order to count for that value
      1. Touching the black line will not give you the point value; the axe must be inside the higher scoring area to receive those points
        1. For example: touching the black line in the bullseye counts as a 4, but breaking it (red on both sides) counts as a 6. This concept is now equally applied across the targets rings
    2. To gain the points for the killshot the axe must be breaking the blue.
Axe Throwing

Section D:
Axe Throwing

Axe Throwing Technique:

  1. WATL players are allowed to throw axes in one of two ways:
    1. 1 Hand holding the axe with the blade facing the target before release.
    2. 2 Hands holding the axe with the blade facing the target before release.
  2. No other style of throws are permitted.
  3. No throw will be thrown without a verbal or gesture signal of an Open Lane from the presiding Coach and confirmed by all throwers.
    1. If no signal is given or confirmation received, and a throw is made by a thrower, then that throw will count as a throw fault.
  1. Throws must be taken within 10 seconds of each other.
    1. If a thrower throws after 10 seconds of the other thrower, this will result in a Throw Fault.
  2. Rotation: the axe must make approximately 1 rotation in order for it to count.
    1. If the axe is close to making a full rotation (ie. 50% rotation) and a portion of the blade touches and sticks to the target, the throw counts.
Technique
Technique

Axe Throwing Distance

  1. One foot must be on the floor while the axe is thrown.
  2. Players feet may not cross the 12ft line until both players have thrown their axes
    1. Axes must be scored before crossing the line
  1. An exception is made for throwers in wheelchairs. See section B.viii.
  2. All Non-throwing Spectators must be to the side or at least 5ft behind throwers.
Axe Throwing Distance

Section E:
Attendance

Late Players and/or Early Departures

  1. Players are allowed to arrive up to 1 hour late, after official league start time.
  2. Players are allowed to leave up to 1 hour early, prior to the end of the scheduled official league time.
  3. If a player arrives late, after the 1 hour official start time or leaves earlier than the 1 hour league completion time:
    1. Should a player leave the league night early, the player that was scheduled to go against the one who is now absent will be granted an automatic win, but will perform 10 throws and have their points recorded.
    2. The late player will automatically receive a loss and a zero for all throws.
  4. Exceptions are allowed with consent of opposing players affected that day and approval from referee.
Attendances

Tournament/Playoff Exception

  1. Players are required to arrive to the playoffs at the start of regulation play.
  2. If a player is not present when their match begins, a 10 minute grace period will be offered.
    1. If the player does not show up, they will forfeit their match and the player that is present will be awarded the win.
    2. If the player arrives during their grace period, but is late for their next match, they will be immediately disqualified.

Absences

  1. Players are allowed to miss up to 2 days of regulation play during the season and make up their matches and throws in subsequent weeks:
    1. Players must make up any missed matches by week 7, otherwise, a loss will be attributed to their absence with a score of 0. If a player knows they'll miss week 7 they must pre-throw any missed matches (up to 8 total for the season) before week 7 takes place.
    2. No missed matches and throws are to be performed during week 8 (playoffs) - the seven week mark is the cut off.
  2. In order to miss a regulation league night, players are required to give a minimum 1 day notice to the referee of their absence.
  3. League participants are able throw up to 2 weeks in advance, including weeks 6 and 7, in anticipation of an absence
    1. This will count towards the participants ability to miss up-to 2 weeks of league play
  4. If a League participant misses 3 weeks or more of league play, they cannot participate in playoffs as they have forfeited WATL Championship eligibility requirements

Section F:
Misconduct

  1. Purposeful Distractions are defined as, but not limited to: Excessive celebration, taunting, using abusive, threatening or insulting language, trash talking, stepping in the lane during a throw, excessive noises, offensive gestures to opponents or any purposeful distractions with the intent to distract a player during a league match or tournament round will not be permitted during games.
    1. First Offense:
      1. The first purposeful distraction from an opposing player will result in a zero score for that throw, for player causing the distraction
      2. The first purposeful distraction from a spectating league member or tournament participant will result in a zero in their first throw of their next match
      3. The first purposeful distraction from a spectator not participating in leagues or tournament will result in the immediate removal from the facility
    2. Second Offense:
      1. The second purposeful distraction from an opposing player will result in a forfeit for that match. Zero scores will be entered for the full match.
      2. The second purposeful distraction from a spectating league member or tournament participant will result in a forfeit from their subsequent match. Zero scores will be entered for the full match.
    1. Third Offense:
      1. The third purposeful distraction from an opposing player will result in a forfeit of the season for league play or forfeit from the tournament. The player will not be allowed to throw for the remainder of the season or remainder of tournament.
      2. The third purposeful distraction from a spectating league member will result in a forfeit of the season or tournament. The league member or tournament participant will not be allowed to spectate or participate for the remainder of the season or tournament.
  1. Match Fixing & Hippodroming in League Play or Tournaments:
    1. If any player is found to fix a match to achieve a desired outcome, during league play or tournaments, then that player will be banned from all WATL tournaments & leagues. Player may appeal the ban, one year after the offense, pending review of the Commissioner.

procedures and specifications

Section G:
Lanes

  1. Each throwing area is designated as a throwing lane.
  2. A regulation lane for competition must contain 2 targets.
  3. Fences or walls block this area from the rest of the facility to keep throwers and axes all contained in a safe environment.
  4. Only the two participating throwers and the axe throwing coach are allowed inside the lane at one time. This includes ensuring the area behind the throwers is clear of any other person up to 5'.
  5. 10 ft minimum/clear ceiling height (within the throwing lane) is recommended for safety reasons.
  6. It is recommended for a lane to be 12ft in length with the targets evenly distributed.

Section H:
Targets

The target:

  1. Each Target should be made of 3 layers of wood.
    1. The first layer should cover the wall in OSB or plywood.
    2. The second layer is called the Backboards and should be made of wood.
      1. There should be horizontal 2x10s, that are 4' feet long, drilled into the wall and packed tightly together to cover the full space for the outer Targets. (This usually takes 6 – 8 boards) This will be the backboard where you will then drill your target boards against.
    3. The third and outer most layer is called the Target boards. These are also made of 4' feet long 2x10 lumber. The targets consist of two components: 1) the targets 2) the headers and footers.
    4. The exact measurements for the 2x10 boards
      1. U.S: Thickness:1-1/2 in • Width 9-1/4 in • Length 4 ft.
      2. Metric: Thickness 38mm • Width 235 mm Length 1.22m
    5. They should be arranged just like the example picture below.

Headers and footers:

  1. Above and below the targets, you will install headers and footers. This will help protect the top and bottom areas of the target while allowing for branding of your company.
    1. Header: drill one 4' foot long 2x10 pieces of wood horizontally on top of target against the backboard.
    2. Footer: drill one 4' foot long 2x10 pieces of wood horizontally on bottom of target against the backboard.
      1. The footer also provides the benefit of allowing you to change boards quicker and easier.
      2. The top of the footer should be 36 inches off the ground.
  2. The end product is a backboard that is 4' feet x 6' and another layer of wood that fully covers the back at 4' feet x 6' as well.
Complete board

Target Design

  1. Each WATL affiliated location shall purchase an official target protractor/stencil.
  2. The small hole on the left in the diagram to the right will have a screw that will be drilled into the center of the middle board. (Approximately 24 inches in the center of the board. That will make 60 inches from the floor).
    1. A black, 20mm marker will then be used to draw the remaining circles.
    2. Holes are 22" thick to allow for marker to fit that has 1/2" thick felt.
    3. Lines are only 20mm thick.
    4. The Bullseye is to be coloured in red.
  3. All targets must be level (no slanting of the targets are allowed).
  4. The bullseye (center red circle) must be 3.5” inches in diameter inside the center ring. The bullseye must be 24” inches (60.96 cm) from the bottom of the board. This should make the center of the bullseye 60" from the floor.
  5. The killshot (2 blue circles) are 1.5” inches in diameter and positioned inside the 1 point ring.
    1. The bottom of the killshot is positioned approximately 35.25 inches from the bottom of the board and 2.5 inches from the outer side of the board ensuring they are centered inside the 1 point outer ring.
  6. Targets will have no marking other than the lines, bullseye, and killshots
  7. "#WATL" or "World Axe throwing League" is required to be listed prominently on either the header or footer boards
  8. Projected Targets are not WATL compliant. Only boards with physical markings are permitted.
Stencil
Fully Complete

Section I:
Axes

  1. Axe Regulations
    1. Scoring Area of Axe
      1. The axe head, blade and cheek up to the front of the eye but not past it.
      2. If there is no visible eye of the axe in the top of the axe head then it counts where the handle would meet if going straight through. To be determined by the official presiding over the match.
  2. The blade (or bit) of the axe may be not longer than 4 inches.
    1. This is to be measured from tip to tip in a straight line.
  3. No second bits or spikes on the opposite side of the axe head from the forward facing bit of the axe.
    1. Decorative blunt objects are allowed but there may not be anything that could be considered sharp. This will be determined by the presiding match official.
  4. Handle Max Length can be no more than 19in/48.26cm from the bottom of the handle to the top of the axe head.
  5. Axes that are not a one-piece, full metal axe, must have the axe head be one solid piece around the handle with no gaps.
  6. Maximum Weights of an axe
    1. Axe Total = 3 lbs/1.36 kg
  7. Broken axe
    1. If the coach determines that a throwers axe has broken during a match in a significant way. The thrower must provide a replacement axe to be verified and approved by the coach. If they do not provide a second non-broken axe within 1 minute they will have the rest of their match throws counted as 0.
      1. The thrower is allowed 1 practice throw with the new axe before continuing the match. This will only apply if their original axe is declared broken by the presiding official.
Requirements

Section J:
Judges

  1. A Scoring official, known as a Judge, must always be present while members are throwing during league play.
    1. Judges must verify all scores taken for official league play.
    2. A 5' radius should be maintained around every participant holding an axe, however, the judge may approach the participants and enter this 5' radius to provide instruction.
  2. Affiliate/Judge/presiding official are forbidden from cheating of any kind. Any caught cheating in any way such as but not limited to, falsifying data, making biased calls in a match, etc. then it will result in a one year ban from hosting any WATL Sanctioned events including leagues, tournaments, etc.
  1. Axes are to be retrieved only when both axes have hit the target or the floor.
  2. Axes shall never be thrown when a participant is picking up an axe from the target area. This will result in an immediate disqualification (counted as a loss) for that match.
Coaches

Section K:
Safety

  1. Axes
    1. Each and every axe is inspected prior to each league night to ensure the axe is up to standard.
    2. Broken axes may not be used.
    3. Participants are instructed to grip the axe by the handle and only the handle.
    4. If an axe breaks or if a player would like to switch axes, they must notify the presiding official and are allowed up to 1 minute to switch axes.
  2. Injuries
    1. If an injury occurs during league play and the player is deemed to be unable to finish the remaining matches by a judge or medical professional then they may makeup their matches the following league night with no penalty.
      1. This will not count towards the player’s right to miss 2 weeks
      2. If there are throws remaining in the current match, then those scores are counted as zero
    2. If an injury occurs during any tournament and the player is deemed unable to progress by a Judge or medical professional, then any matches pending will be marked a 0 points scored and matches forfeit.

Section L:
Regular Season

  1. The entire season lasts 8 weeks including playoffs.
  2. There are 7 weeks where players can work on their season total allowing for 280 throws that officially contribute to each player's season standings.
  3. Levels of Competition - Sanctioned leagues and Rec leagues
  4. Rec Leagues are not mandatory and will not count for league qualifiers.
  5. Sanctioned League
    1. A Sanctioned League is the axe throwing league hosted at a participating WATL affiliated venue that follows the rules and regulations of the World Axe Throwing League.
    2. A Sanctioned League winner in a season, is crowned Regional Champion and is eligible for the World Championship.
    3. A WATL Sanctioned League must have a minimum of 6 different players.
    4. A WATL Sanctioned League may not have more than 60 players. If recruiting more than 60 players at the WATL Venue, then they must host Multiple Sanctioned Leagues.
    5. Sanctioned Leagues must begin within 1 week from the official WATL start dates for each season.
    6. Sanctioned Leagues must end within 1 week from the official WATL start dates for each season.
      1. WATL must be notified at least 2 weeks in advance, before the end of season, of delays to the end of a season tournament due to acts of God or national holidays.
  6. Multiple Sanctioned Leagues
    1. A WATL affiliated venue may host more than one sanctioned league per season.
    2. For players registered in more than one WATL sanctioned league in each season (be it separate nights or separate locations), prior to the start of the league season, must immediately identify which league and location will be considered for their score and eligibility for the WATL Championship and official WATL leaderboards.
      1. Failure to do so will result in WATL making the determination from the lowest points in all registered locations.
    3. If hosting more than one sanctioned league, each sanctioned league must have a minimum of 10 different players not participating in another WATL sanctioned league.
    4. The winner of each Sanctioned League is considered to be a Regional Champion for the sake of determining who is eligible for the World Championship.
      1. This will allow one location to potentially have multiple Regional Champions for the World Championship invitations.

Section M:
Playoffs

  1. During the 8th Week playoff tournament all league members will participate in a single match, Double Elimination bracket.
  2. Seeding is done in the traditional manner based on the total match wins from weeks 1 through 7.
    1. In the case of a tie for match wins the seeding will be based on the total points gained during weeks 1-7 between the two tied players.
  3. All competitors eligible for playoffs will be put into two sets of brackets, the winner’s bracket and underdog bracket (W and U brackets for short) after the first round. The first-round winners proceed into the W bracket and the losers proceed into the U bracket. The W bracket is conducted in the same manner as a single-elimination tournament, except that the losers of each round “drop down” into the U bracket.
  4. The final Championship round is between the winner of the W bracket and the winner of the U bracket consisting of best of 3 matches. Allowing for one practice throw between each match.
    1. The Winner: will be the person who wins 2 out of the 3 matches first.
      1. The W winner must lose twice in order for the U winner to win the Championship.
        1. This means that if the U winner, beats the W winner in a best of 3 match, they must play another best of 3 match in order for the U winner to win the Championship.
Pre Game Rules

The world championship

Section N:
Rules

  1. The World Axe Throwing League Championships are held once a year after the Fall season in late November, early December
  2. We will announce the seasonal WATL Champion at the end of each season.

Section P:
Trophy

  1. The World Axe Throwing League Championship trophy is held with the World Champion at the WATL affiliated venue they are representing for one year, until the next World Championship where it will be delivered back.
    1. If they did not represent a venue (via a win of the Wildcard, Open Tournament etc) then they may keep it at their personal residence.
    2. The Championship Axe will be kept by the winner of that year's Championship title.
Trophy
World Championship
World Championship
World Championship

Section O:
Qualifying

The World Championship will be comprised of 128 competitors

  1. A maximum of 22 qualified players per season with the top high scores will earn their bid to worlds from league play.
  2. Scores for participants who have already earned a bid and unofficial league play scores will not be considered in calculating high scores that may qualify for bids each season.
  3. Up to 22 players will earn their bid to worlds from league play as long as the following criteria are met
    1. Players must win their Regional Championship
    2. A maximum of six (6) runner-ups or 3rd place competitors globally may also earn a bid to the World Championship.
      1. Players must come 2nd or 3rd place in their regional league championship as long as the person who placed above them has either previously earned their bid or did so during the current season.
      2. If any of the above criteria are not met, up to 3 bids will be passed down to 23rd, 24th, and 25th place players on the global leaderboard for that season. These players must also be regional champions, runner-up or 3rd place behind a player that secured a bid previously or in the current season. Any remaining bids not earned will then be allocated to the wildcard.
      3. Example 1: A venue has 4 competitors that are in the top 25 globally for points and are competing in their regional championship. The top 22 high scores on the leaderboard only has one competitor from another venue that does not qualify for a bid, passing the bid down one position to the next highest qualified player in the 23rd to 25th high scores.
        1. Player 1: 1650 points (6th place globally)
        2. Player 2: 1640 points (8th place globally)
        3. Player 3: 1600 points (22nd place globally)
        4. Player 4: 1590 points (23rd place globally)
          1. Player 1 wins, they have a secured bid to the Championship.
          2. If Player 2 & 3 come in second and third place they have secured a bid to the Championship.
          3. If Player 4 came in fourth, they do not have a secured bid. If player 4 and player 2 come in 2nd and third place, both have secured a bid to the championship.
      4. Example 2: 18 players in the top 22 highest points on the leaderboard meet their regional championship requirements for a worlds bid, and 4 have not. Only 2 players from the 23rd to 25th highest points on the leaderboard meet their regional championship requirements. There will be only those 20 total players from league play that season securing a bid to worlds.
      5. Any bid placements not allocated in that season will be added to the Wildcard pool.
  4. All qualified Regional Champions winners that have secured a bid for the World Championship must play at least 1 additional sanctioned WATL season to maintain and keep their placement bid
    1. Example 1: If you qualify for the World Championship during the winter season, you must then complete 1 additional WATL season during the same calendar year to maintain your bid. Whether it’s Spring, Summer or Fall.
    2. Example 2: If you earn a World Championship bid through a WATL Sanctioned Tournament and you have completed a WATL season prior to the tournament, or complete a WATL season after the tournament, during the same calendar year, you maintain your bid.
    3. Exceptions:
      1. Competitors that earn a bid during the Fall season.
      2. A venue did not have enough participants in subsequent seasons to have a WATL sanctioned league.
      3. Competitors that do not have a WATL venue within their metropolitan area or are further than 1-hour of drive-time from their primary residence.
        1. Drive time as measured from their home, to their venue, during the time when a WATL sanctioned league would normally take place.
      4. Competitors that have a WATL venue in their metropolitan area or within 1 hour of their primary residence but venue did not have enough participants to run a sanctioned WATL season.
  5. The top 6 qualifiers at the Canadian Open & US Open will have a secured placement to the World Championship
    1. If the top 6 qualifiers have already earned a bid, the placement will not be passed down to subsequent participants.
      1. Any remaining bid placements that are not allocated to winners will go into the Wildcard bid.
  6. The top 4 qualifiers for The US Arnold, Throwdown, Angrywood or any other officially sanctioned WATL tournament where a Championship bid is announced, will have a secured placement to the World Championship
    1. If the top 4 qualifiers have already earned a bid, the placement will not be passed down to subsequent participants.
  7. Any bid placements not allocated to eligible tournament participants will be added to the Wildcard pool.
  8. All qualified tournament winners must play at least 1 sanctioned WATL season to maintain and keep their placement bid to the World Championship
    1. Competitors that do not have a WATL venue within their metropolitan area or are further than 1-hour of drive-time from their primary residence.
      1. Drive time as measured from their home, to their venue, during the time when a WATL sanctioned league would normally take place.
    2. Competitors that have a WATL venue in their metropolitan area or within 1 hour of their primary residence but venue did not have enough participants to run a sanctioned WATL season.

Section Q:
Wildcard Eligibility

  1. The World Championship Wildcards will be reserved only for WATL League participants that have played at least 1 WATL season during that year
  2. The number of World Championship Wildcards will depend on the number of earned bids throughout the year, but will be at minimum, 16 Wildcard spots
    1. Wildcards will be selected using a lottery method
    2. There will be 64 competitors in total that will be selected for the lotto draw
    1. Exceptions:
      1. Competitors that do not have a WATL venue within their metropolitan area or are further than 1-hour of drive-time from their primary residence
        1. Drive time as measured from their home, to their venue, during the time when a WATL sanctioned league would normally take place
      2. WATL affiliates who were not able to have enough participants to run a sanctioned WATL season, but have competitors interested in representing the WATL affiliate and live within the metropolitan area or live within 1 hour from the venue will be allowed to participate in the Wildcard

Watl Duals League

Section R:
WATL Duals League

Duals is a partnered competition where both competitors must throw their standard axe (hatchet) at the same time, from behind the 12ft line, at the same target for each throw. Generally, teams do a countdown (3,2,1) to help sync their throws at the same time.

Standard WATL Gameplay, Regular Season & Playoff rules apply with the exception to the below additions/changes

  1. If one teammate throws their axe and it hits the target before the other teammate has let go of their axe, it is an illegal throw and no points are awarded
    1. This call is in the hands of the active Judge and not the competitors
  2. As a safety precaution, players must generally be in unison, standing at approximately the same distances with each other during the duration of the throw
    1. For clarity, one player cannot stand at the 12ft line and another at the 15ft line as it introduces a potential risk during the throw
    2. Players must stand side-by-side with each other, at the same general distance, or if stepping towards the target to throw, their motion must be in general unison
  3. All axes that stick in the target are awarded points accordingly:
    1. ie. Team "A" throws their first throw at the same time, one axe lands in the 4 and one axe lands in the 6, giving them a combined score of 10 for that throw
  4. Killshots can always be called on the 5th and 10th throw of a match
    1. Teams decide if one or both players will throw for the Killshot. If only one player is going for the Killshot, team must identify which player is going for the Killshot & confirm with the judge
      1. If a Killshot is called, team must identify which thrower or throwers will go for the Killshot
      2. Points are awarded to any Killshot that is landed
  1. Total score wins the match
  2. Axes must be embedded in the target to count for points as per standad rules.
  3. For an axe that is embedded into another axe (a Robin Hood), both axes will receive the points of the first axe embedded in the target.
  4. Sudden Death Rules:
    1. In the event of a tie after 10 throws in a single match, the match enters into sudden death.
    2. ONLY Killshots are allowed during all sudden death throws.
    3. Teams will remain in their respective targets for sudden death throw (no switching of targets required).
      1. If an additional sudden death throw is required, teammates must switch Killshots, on the same target
    4. In the event that all players miss the Killshot during Sudden Death, a measuring tape or accurate measuring device will be used to measure the distance from the closet valid scoring area of each axe head to the closes edge of the Killshot. The single axe with the shortest distance on either team will be awarded the match in favor of the team who threw it.
      1. If a player touches their axe before a measurement is made, the match is awarded to the opposing player
Duals League
Duals League

Section S: Sanctioned Duals Leagues

  1. A sanctioned Duals League is the axe throwing league hosted at a participating WATL Affiliated venue that follows the rules and regulations of the World Axe Throwing League
  2. A sanctioned Duals League winner in a season, is crowned Regional Duals Champion and is eligible for the Duals World Championship.
  3. A WATL Sanctioned Duals League must have a minimum of 2 different teams (4 people) to be official.
  4. A WATL Sanctioned Duals League may not have more than 30 teams. If recruiting more than 30 teams at the WATL Venue, then they must host Multiple Sanctioned Duals Leagues.
  1. Sanctioned Duals Leagues must begin within 1 week from the official WATL start dates for each season.
  2. Sanctioned Duals Leagues must end within 1 week from the official WATL start dates for each season.
    1. WATL must be notified at least 2 weeks in advance, before the end of the season, of delays to the end of a season tournament due to acts of God or national holidays.

Section T: Multiple Sanctioned Duals Leagues

  1. A WATL affiliated venue may host more than one Sanctionated Duals League per season.
  2. If hosting more than one Sanctionated Duals League, each sanctioned league must have a minimum of 2 different teams not participating in another WATL sanctioned league.
  1. The winning Team of each Sanctioned Duals League is considered to be a Regional Duals Champion Team for the sake of determining who is eligible for the Duals World Championship.
    1. This will allow one location to potentially have multiple Regional Duals Champion Teams for the Duals World Championship invitations.

Section U: Qualifying for the Duals
World Championship

When competing in a WATL sanctioned Duals season, if your Team has met the following criteria, your team will earn a bid for the Duals World Championship.

The Duals World Championship will be comprised of up to 64 teams

  1. Your team must win your local league season and be crowned Regional Duals Champion.
  2. Out of all Regional Duals Champions per season, 10 Regional Champions with the top overall points score from weeks 1 through 7 will earn a placement at the World Championship.
    1. The top scores of all Regional Dual Champions must be approved and verified by WATL
    2. This requires that your facility utilizes the official WATL Duals League App or Software
    3. Players that earn a bid must be the same 2-player team who compete in the Duals World Championship
      1. If any one-player is injured or cannot attend, the team forfeits their bid for the Duals World Championship
  1. Place in the top 6 at the US Open, Canadian Open, Throwdown, or Angrywood
    1. If the top 6 qualifying teams have already earned a bid, the placement will not be passed down to subsequent participants
      1. Any remaining bid placements that are not allocated to winners will go into the Wildcard bid
  2. Be the previous years Duals World Champion team:
    1. must be the same 2-member team
  3. Be selected via lottery draw, to participate in the Duals World Championship tournament
  4. WATL may allocate more bids to other tournaments at its sole discretion
Duals Qualifying

Section V: Restrictions on Qualifying

  1. Cannot be eligible for more than 1 Duals World Championship placement in a year.
    1. A player cannot receive another placement by creating a newly formed team
  2. If a team has already earned a placement for the Duals World Championship, and they win their next regional championship and meet all eligibility requirements, the Championship placement will go to the runner-up below them that meets all other required eligibility requirements with the exception of being a regional winner.
    1. This means that the runner-up must also place in the top 12 points score amongst Regional Champions globally.
  3. If a person wins a tournament outside of the sanctioned season and they already have a placement in the World Championship then their bid is given to the runner-up of the tournament.
  1. Prior to the start of a league season, if a team has earned a bid, but would like to form a new team, both players must email WATL & consent to the dissolution of their existing team:
    1. This will result in the team forfeiting their earned bid placement
  2. Players are able to participate in multiple Duals teams:
    1. For players registered in more than one team in a single Duals league season, prior to the start of the season, both players must identify which team will be considered for their score and eligibility for the WATL Duals Championship and official WATL leaderboards.
    2. Players must email WATL at [email protected] and indicate which Team is being considered for a bid
    3. Failure to do so will result in no teams that the associated players are members of, being able to qualify for the Duals Championship.
Duals Qualifying Restrictions

Section W: Duals Wildcard Eligibility

  1. WATL Duals Tournaments will be open to all competitors globally
  2. The number of Duals World Championship Wildcards team spots will depend on the number of earned bids throughout the year
  1. Wildcards Teams will be selected using a lottery method
    1. The Lotto draw will be comprised of teams who have completed a minimum of 1 sanctioned WATL league or sanctioned WATL tournament and have not previously qualified for a Championship bid

WATL Big Axe League

Section X: WATL Big Axe League

The WATL Big Axe League is a competition where competitors must throw their big axe, starting with at least one foot behind the 17ft line, but not ever crossing the 15ft mark. Standard WATL Gameplay, Regular Season & Playoff rules apply with exception to the below additions/changes:

  1. Players must start, with one or both feet, behind the 17ft mark
    1. Players may step over the 17ft mark but may not cross the 15ft mark, otherwise, their throw will be counted as a foot fault
  2. A match is 5 throws
Duals Big Axe
  1. Each player will play 4 matches in a sanctioned league night, for a total of 20 big axe throws
  2. Killshots can be called on the 5th throw
  3. In the event of a tie, standard Sudden Death Rules apply where only Killshots are allowed
Duals Big Axe

Section Y: WATL Big Axe Specs

  1. The axe head must weigh at least 2.25lbs, but no more than 3lbs
    1. As stated by the manufacturer head weight, not including the wood in the eye of the head
      1. If manufacturer head weight cannot be located (ie. vintage axes), you may take a picture of the head weight, on a scale
        1. It is the player’s responsibility to provide evidence of the head weight at any time during league or tournament as long as there have been no material modifications to the axe from when the original picture was taken
  2. The handle must be made of wood and handle length must be at least 23” inches & a maximum of 30” inches
    1. The measurement includes up to 1”inch above the eye of the axe head (in case a handle is pushed up)
      1. For example, if there’s 1”inch of wood sticking out from the eye of the head at the top of the axe, the length of the axe handle would be measured from the top of the handle, to the bottom and must be at least 23 inches
  3. The axe blade cannot be more than 4 5/8"
  4. Double bit axes & Fireman axes are permitted as long as they meet the specifications outlined herein
    1. Only the forward facing blade will count for scoring purposes
    2. If there's an over rotation, and both blades stick to the target, then it will be marked as a fault
  5. Axes that have a stated manufacture head weight of between 2.25 and 3lbs may not be grossly modified to change the head weight above or below standard specifications.
Duals Big Axe Specs

Section Z: Sanctioned Big Axe Leagues

  1. A sanctioned Big Axe League is the axe throwing league hosted at a participating WATL affiliated venue that follows the rules and regulations of the World Axe Throwing League
  2. A Sanctioned Big Axe League winner in a season, is crowned Regional Big Axe Champion and is eligible for the Big Axe World Championship.
  3. A WATL Sanctioned Big Axe League must have a minimum of 4 players.
  4. A WATL Sanctioned Big Axe League may not have more than 30 players. If recruiting more than 60 players at the WATL Venue, then they must host Multiple Sanctioned Big Axe Leagues.
  1. Sanctioned Big Axe Leagues must begint within 1 week from the official WATL start dates for each season.
  2. Sanctioned Big Axe Leagues must end within 1 week from the official WATL start dates for each season.
    1. WATL must be notified at least 2 weeks in advance, before the end of the season, of delays to the end of a season tournament due to acts of God or national holidays.

Section AA: Multiple Sanctioned Big Axe Leagues

  1. A WATL affiliated venue may host more than one Sanctioned Big Axe League per season.
  2. If hosting more than one Sanctioned Big Axe League, each sasnctioned league must have a minimum of 6 different players not participating in another WATL sanctioned league.
  1. The winner of each Sanctioned Big Axe League is considered to be a Regional Big Axe Champion Team for the sake of determining who is eligible for the Big Axe World Championship.
    1. This will allow one location to potentially have multiple Regional Big Axe Champions for the Big Axe World Championship invitations.
Multiple Sanctioned Big Axe League

Section AB: Qualifying for the Big Axe World Championship

The Big Axe World Championship will be comprised of 64 competitors

When competing in a WATL sanctioned Big Axe season, if you met the following criteria, you will earn a bid for the Big Axe World Championship:

  1. You must win your local league season and be crowned Regional Big Axe Champion
  2. Out of all Regional Big Axe Champions per season, the top 12 Regional Champions with the top overall points score from weeks 1 through 7 will earn a placement at the World Championship
    1. The top scores of all Big Axe Champions must be approved and verified by WATL
    2. This required that your facility utilizes the official WATL Big Axe League App or Software
  1. Place in the top 4 at the US Open or Canadian Open
    1. WATL may allocate more bids to other tournaments at its sole discretion
  2. Be the previous years Big Axe World Champion team (not applicable to 2020)
  3. Be selected via lottery draw, to participate in the Big Axe World Championship tournament
Big Axe Restrictions on Qualifying

Section AC: Resctrictions on Qualifying

  1. Cannot be eligible for more than 1 Big Axe World Championship placement in a year.
  2. If an individual has already earned a placement for the Big Axe World Championship, and they win their next Regional Championship and meet all eligibility requirements, the Championship placement will go to the runner-up below them that meets all other required eligibility requirements with the exception of being a Regional Winner.
    1. This means that the runner-up must also place in the top 12 point scores amongst Regional Champions globally.
  3. If an individual wins a tournament outside of the sanctioned season and they already have a placement in the World Championship then their bid is given to the runner-up of the tournament.
  1. Players are able to participate in multiple Big Axe leagues:
    1. For individuals registered in more than one league in a sanctioned Big Axe League season, prior to the start of the season, individuals must identify which league will be considered to their score and eligibility for the WATL Big Axe Championship and official WATL leaderboards.
    2. Failure to do so will result in WATL considering the lowest score in the individuals registered leagues as their qualifying/eligible scores for that season.
Big Axe Restrictions on Qualifying

Section AD: Big Axe Wildcard Eligibility

  1. WATL Big Axe Tournaments will be open to all competitors globally
  2. The number of Big Axe World Championship Wildcards spots will depend on the number of earned bids throughout the year
  3. Big Axe Wildcard Spots will be selected using a lottery method
    1. The Lotto draw will be comprised of Big Axe competitors who have completed a minimum of 1 sanctioned WATL league or sanctioned WATL tournament and have not previously qualified for a Championship bid
    1. Exceptions:
      1. Competitors that do not have a WATL venue within their metropolitan area or are further than 1-hour of drive-time from their primary residence will be allowed to compete in the Wildcard
        1. Drive time as measured from their home, to their venue, during the time when a WATL sanctioned league would normally take place
      2. WATL affiliates who were not able to have enough participants to run a sanctioned WATL season, but have competitors interested in representing the WATL affiliate and live within the metropolitan area
Multiple Sanctioned Big Axe League

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World Axe Throwing League Certified Distributors

World Axe Throwing League Certified Distributors

Today the World Axe Throwing League is proud to announce the introduction of certified distributors. Being a member of the World Axe Throwing League has always and will continue to give great perks to it’s...

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