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Two handed axe throwing

Our Commitment to Safety

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At Whistle Punks we never compromise on safety. Whether it’s our top-notch instructor’s training or the state of the art equipment we use, we’re always looking for ways to make axe throwing as safe as possible.

That’s why RoSPA (Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents) & TESS (The Events Safety Shop) have endorsed us for having excellent safety practices.

Instructors

Each lane is supervised at all times by a qualified instructor and there are only ever two players per lane throwing an axe at a time. Our instructors teach players to throw properly and avoid throwing in ways that could cause an axe to come back at them.
Each instructor is highly trained and regularly assessed to ensure all guest experiences follow our safety guidelines.

Axe design

Whistle Punks use axes with a wooden handle. This is because our experience has taught us that wooden handled axes will bounce far less than their rubber-coated counter-parts.

Lane design

The matting on the floor of our lanes has been handpicked and extensively tested to make sure it absorbs as much of the force as possible and reduces the risk of an axe making its way back at you.
We also have shock absorbers above our targets that catch axes and prevent them from rebounding from a height.

Simon holding one of our new axes

The Whistle Punks Axe

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As axe throwers we have thrown and tested a lot of different axes, forever seeking that perfect throwing axe. It would need to have the right balance between weight and length while still remaining within the standard axe throwing proportions.
There have been a few close-shaves, some almost-rans and far too many not even closes.

Our quest may be at an end.

We are changing from our current axes to a Helko Werk axe. The Whistle Punks logo is stamped on the side and it was made according to our exacting specifications – the perfect Whistle Punks axe.

These axes will provide a better quality axe to throw with. They will last longer, throw better and have a nicer all round experiences.

 

About Helko Werk:

Helko Werk started in Cronenberg, Germany in 1844. They quickly earned a reputation as a manufacturer of high-quality hatchets, axes and forestry tools, and by the early 20th Century were exporting to Europe, Africa, Asia, and the Americas. Helko hatchets and axes are recognised worldwide as some of the finest forestry tools available.

 

The Forging Process:

All Helko Werk axes are drop-forged from high-grade carbon steel. Drop-forging is one of the most proven methods of crafting durable hardware and tools.
After forging, the heads are hardened and cooled. Unlike many other manufacturers, who use a water bath, Helko tools are cooled in warm oil to avoid small chinks and cracks forming in the metal.

They have spent 175 years perfecting the hardness and temper of their blades, creating the ideal balance between superior edge holding ability, ease of sharpening, and resistance to chipping and fracture.

The quality of the handle is a measure of the tool’s integrity. Helko Werk equips their axes with some of the finest American Hickory and Swish Ash available.

 

The Whistle Punks axe specs are:

Weight of head: approx 600g
Handle length: approx 36cm – Ash

Looking like badasses at our throw down.

#throwlikeagirl and International Women’s Day

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International Women’s Day is the 8th of March and we thought that there is no better time than today to reflect on why #throwlikeagirl is important.

Gender inequality still exists around the world. At Whistle Punks we are working on combating this.

Our throw like a girl campaign is our attempt to change the stereotype of women being bad at throwing sports. We often get women coming into Whistle Punks that have never thrown anything and then they pick up an axe to discover they are a natural.

Here at Whistle Punks, we are loving the steady increase in females applying for jobs. Our London venue currently has 6 female instructors and in Birmingham, we have a female assistant venue manager.

Get to know a few of our female instructors and why they love sinking bulls-eyes?

Sarah with axes

Sarah – London

Other than axe throwing what other hobbies do you have?
Outside of axe throwing I’m a professional ballet dancer and choreographer, I’m also pursuing an MA in Dance Politics and Sociology, and I go trampolining every weekend.

What do you enjoy about axe throwing?
I love axe throwing because as an instructor, there is nothing more satisfying than when a customer sinks their first axe and you see their excitement. And when I throw, it’s nice to be good at something that is a little unexpected.

Do you have any advice for other people who want to become great at axe throwing?
Practice a lot and seek help from your fellow instructors. Don’t be embarrassed to ask for advice. We all started as beginners and we all have room to improve!

What sort of positive impact does axe throwing have?
Axe throwing is empowering. As I said, there’s nothing like the excitement of sinking your first axe and it’s really rewarding to see customers come in, sceptical of their own abilities, and watch them discover they can do something they never knew they could.

Andrea with an axe

Andrea – Manchester

Why did you apply to join Whistle Punks?
I began at Whistle Punks after leaving my job as a behaviour mentor in a high school to go to university to study Psychology and Counselling, and I needed a part-time job. I didn’t want a typical retail or bar job as I didn’t want my ex-pupils to see me and wonder what I was doing. I was looking for a job that was interesting and came across the advertisement for Whistle Punks. I applied, went to an interview, and here I am.

What do you enjoy about axe throwing?
I like the challenge of landing different throws. I love that me and the other girls the work for Whistle Punks are kind of beating the stereotype about axe throwing being a “man’s thing”. It’s great when someone comes in and is genuinely shocked and impressed that I can throw.

Other than axe throwing what other hobbies do you have?
I love Ice Hockey. I’m a huge Manchester Storm fan but I like Sheffield Steelers too which is frowned upon as they are rival teams. I would love to play but I’m not very good at ice skating and I don’t really have much time to practice at the minute. I play rugby and am the Chair of the Women’s Rugby Union at my university this year. I know it sounds a bit boring and generic but I really enjoy reading and listening to music. I mainly read Stephen King books but I’ll read most books really. I listen to all genres of music, I was brought up on The Beatles so I would probably say they are my favourite band.

Jesse looking like a boss crouching in a lane with an axe

30 second chat with Jesse – #throwlikeagirl

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“I was looking for a gun range to work at as I used to shoot at targets for fun. Axe throwing came up and there were jobs going and I was like ‘f**k yeah’. I stalked Whistle Punks on social media. On the Youtube channel I saw a video of one of the other instructors, Sarah, throwing and she was the same size and build as me and it made me think ‘I can do this’.

My first-time axe throwing I was terrible and because I was so bad I wanted to be really good. I worked at it and practised a lot and got better. Though even now I still learn from other instructors and I get to teach them new things, it’s a very collaborative environment.
Axe throwing is great because it’s an escape from university. It requires focus, so when I’m axe throwing, that’s all I’m thinking about. I’m quite a busy person so being able to focus on one thing and forget everything else is great.”

Looking like badasses at our throw down.

Axe throwing is empowering: the reasons our instructors enjoy axe throwing.

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As part of our ongoing #throwlikeagirl campaign, where we are trying to reclaim the term to show the world how awesome our instructors and axe throwers are, we spoke to some of Whistle Punks’ female instructors about what they enjoy most about axe throwing.

Yanthe (Vauxhall): Axe throwing is unique and really empowering. I know that I can win an axe-throwing match against someone twice my size. It doesn’t matter how big someone is because axe throwing isn’t about strength and size, it’s all about technique.

Andrea (Manchester): I like the challenge of landing different throws. I love that me and the other girls the work for Whistle Punks are beating the stereotype about axe throwing being a “man’s thing”. It’s great when someone comes in and is genuinely shocked and impressed that I can throw.

Elysia (Manchester): The satisfaction of hitting the board is great and I enjoy mastering new axe throwing techniques. I love that axe throwing is all about momentum and technique, and not power. We often get women come in who aren’t confident or think they’ll lose. I tell every single woman that comes in that it’s all about technique. And then when you see them succeed, it’s really satisfying.

Jesse (Vauxhall): I’m a big fan of using weapons in a controlled way. I like training and using them appropriately and of course, throwing axes at targets. I used to train and compete with HEMA (Historical European Martial Arts) and my preferred weapon was the longsword.

Sarah (Vauxhall): As an instructor, there is nothing more satisfying than when a customer sinks their first axe and you see their excitement.  As a thrower, it’s nice to be good at something that is a little unexpected.

We think aside from being awesome, they are all highly skilled and passionate about axe throwing, they are the reason that we encourage people to throw like a girl.

Next time we’ll be talking about why some people who come axe throwing aren’t confident and the ways that our instructors help them get their swagger.

Jesse, throwing an axe down lane.

#throwlikeagirl

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Ok, we know what you’re thinking. At Whistle Punks we are aware of the general stereotype of an axe thrower.

When people hear axe thrower they tend to think of flannel shirts and beanies, hipsters with man buns and beards and beer. The biggest generalisation about axe throwers that we hear is that all axe throwers are male.

The axe throwing industry is male-dominated but there are kick-ass women who are smashing it in axe throwing. We are also trying to get more women interested in the sport of axe throwing and change the perception of axe throwers to encompass all of the awesome and diverse instructors and customers at Whistle Punks.

We believe that axe throwing should be open to all people, regardless of age, ability, gender or any other dividing factor. And we want all people to feel welcome.

Over the next few months, we are celebrating our female staff with our new campaign #throwlikeagirl.
The campaign will showcase our female instructor’s incredible skills, we will chat with them about what they enjoy about axe throwing and much more. They will be showing that axe throwing is open to all.