Thinking about knife throwing may conjure up images of old-timey circus performers standing perfectly still against a target while knives are hurled perilously close to them. The impalement act is perhaps the best-known example of knife throwing. What’s little known, however, is that this pastime has been making a comeback over the last decade as a sport. What was once a thrilling entertainment act is now regarded as a competitive sport that combines archery with dart throwing skills. Here are three things about knife throwing that you may not have known.
1. Knife Throwing Championships Are a Thing
Every year, in Europe, the Big Thrower’s Meeting/ World and European Championship is held for knife and ax throwers to meet and compete for titles in Precision and Long Distance. There are also several experimental contests that offer alternative titles. Shows and games are included in the itinerary as well.
Knife throwing clubs are also common in the U.S. In fact, Texas is considered the “knife throwing capital of the world.”
2. The Weight of the Blade Matters
Stainless steel throwing knives are a favorite among competitors because of their lightweight material and their ability to hold an edge. Knives can either be sharpened at just the tip, or just along one edge. It is common for beginners to start with an unbalanced blade that is heavier at one end. Once skilled, however, balanced blades are more common amongst knife throwers.
3. There Are Different Styles of Knife Throwing
There are two main knife throwing techniques: the fast-spin throw and the no-spin throw. The fast-spin throw is thrown from either the blade or the handle and spins end-over-end toward the target. No-spin throws are less used in competitions and more used by professional combat fighters and soldiers. This type of throw can traverse longer distances.
Although it may not be a sport that is thought of as common, knife throwing has a following around the globe. There are several competitions and meetings worldwide for knife and ax throwers to come together and to share their hobby.