May 4, 2023


For several weeks, the IATF has been reviewing feedback from axe makers, IATF owner/operators and the axe throwing community at large. In particular, we've been reviewing the minimum axe head length dimension. Several models of hatchets have been demonstrated to fall slightly short of the minimum 5" (127mm) at the very bottom point of the blade. These models are and have been commonly in use, unmodified, and considered safe and fair for competition.

The IATF has always strived to encourage a thriving maker's ecosystem around axes and customization while balancing the rules for safety and fairness. It is not the IATF's intention to disqualify axes arbitrarily.

Axe Head Minimum Length Dimension Updated

Based on the data collected in research we've conducted, and constructive, quantitative feedback we've received, we are revising the minimum hatchet axe head length to 4.75" (121mm) and the minimum Big Axe (felling axe) head length to 5.75" (146mm). This 0.25" (6mm) adjustment for both hatchets and Big Axes (felling axes) accommodates the vast majority of commonly used, unmodified models.

Section 4.1 - Axe Specifications, specifically Rule 3.4 - Axe Head Length Specification, of the IATF Rules & Guidelines has been updated to reflect this revision.


Big Axe (Felling Axe)

3.4 The minimum head length is:






We want to acknowledge that measurements of the bottom point of the blade should have been more rigorously reviewed before the previous rules publication last August. We appreciate our passionate community for your attention to detail and for your continued constructive feedback in bringing this matter to our attention. We also appreciate your patience while we took the time to collect information to support the revision.

As always, we value feedback and continue to encourage it via email to