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How to Throw a Tomahawk and Hit a Target

Tomahawk throwing can be a rigorous yet rewarding activity. The secret to throwing tomahawks is “lots of practice and follow-through,” according to Life Scout Claudia Mattingly.

To properly throw a tomahawk, stand several paces from your target. Grab the tomahawk at the bottom of the handle like you’re shaking someone’s hand.

Face your target. When you throw, bring the tomahawk straight back and straight forward to release. No fancy wind-ups. Your grip should be loose so the ax glides out of your hand. You don’t need to put a lot of muscle into your throw.

If the tomahawk isn’t sticking into the target, adjust your distance by taking a step forward or back.


For throwing tomahawks, certain guidelines must be followed to be S.A.F.E.

S – Supervision: Qualified adult instructors must guide Scouts on how to handle and safely throw the tomahawks.

A – Assessment: Cub Scouts should not throw tomahawks. This activity is for Scouts BSA members and other older Scouts.

F – Fitness and Skills: Can you easily pick up the tomahawks? Are the throwing lines safely measured and clearly marked? Evaluate that every Scout has the maturity and physical ability to throw a tomahawk.

E – Equipment and Environment: Make sure the throwing range is safe with buffers all around and targets, like soft wood or hay bales. Tomahawks should be sharp enough to stick into the targets and not bounce. Handles should be in good shape and not splintered.

3 Comments on How to Throw a Tomahawk and Hit a Target

  1. Hawk throwing is still listed as a “Shooting Sport” and, in my Council, requires a certified NRA RSO.

  2. So, is tomahawk throwing no longer considered a shooting sport that requires multiple folks with certs?

  3. I notice it says tomahawk, not axe. When I was a Scout youth, throwing an axe would have gotten your Totin’ Chip card revoked for at least 6 mo. in my troop. The card had to be learned and earned back from scratch!

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