The advice below refers to sport throwing knives but applies equally to the many types of axe that are typically thrown in competition too.
Although most throwing knives don’t have edges, they do have a point and can inflict great harm. Always be aware that you are engaging in a sport that can do damage to people and property if you do not conduct yourself in a safe and sensible manner.
Be sure that you have a backstop to your target, something that will stop your blades if you miss the target. Check what is behind this backstop as there may be times when your blade travels over or around your backstop. Know what is on the other side of it.
People around you
Always be aware of people in your immediate area. There should be no one between you and the target. Mark off an area using rope or tape to keep people out. If there are other throwers next to you, keep a look out as their blades may rebound too; sometimes as far back as they are throwing or further. Always leave a safe distance.
Check them periodically for nicks or cracks. When knives hit each other or the ground they can generate sharp burrs. The last thing you want is a gash from a knife that doesn’t usually have an edge! Check them during your sessions and repair with a metal file if necessary.
Alcohol and knives
Booze and knives don’t mix. Ever. Feel free to have a drink after the knives have been put away. Not before or during a session.
Important legal considerations – responsible travelling
Because of the media attention recently, about knife crime, I feel we should be seen, as throwers, to be completely within the law. Under Section 139 of the Criminal Justice Act 1988 it is an offence to have a bladed or sharply pointed item, in a public place, without good reason. An exception is the carrying of a sub 3″ folding non-lockable knife.
Our throwing ” knives” and tomahawks are dull-edged, but could be construed as being sharply pointed items. So I would like to suggest that the use at home, on your own private property, under proper safety conditions, you will not contravene this law.
But when travelling to one of the throwing days at the paintball site you will be in a public place so a good reason is needed to travel with them. To me, this is a good reason if travelling to an organised event. It would be prudent to have the “knives” out of sight, in the boot of the car and in some sort of box so as not to be easily accessible.
I will ensure that all throwers on the mailing list receive an invitation to the Open Days, via email, that I hope they will print out and carry with them.