If you can crack a whip, throw a dart, shoot a hoop, or maybe you just want to channel your inner Viking, then Sam Hay, co-owner of Lumber Punks, says you can easily throw an axe and hit a target.
Lumber Punks in Miami on the Gold Coast has been open for two years now and its success has encouraged the owners to open up a site in Brisbane in 2018 and more recently across the west in Perth this year.
Lumber Punks run four seasons of leagues in all of their venues. They have in excess of 150 competitors with twelve teams that throw out of the Gold Coast, seventeen teams in Brisbane and fifteen in Perth. The demographic of the leagues shows how popular the sport is across the board.
“We get doctors and lawyers, nurses, teachers, musicians, tradies, tattooists and snake catchers,” says Sam. “They all share one thing in common, they love to throw axes.” The leagues are a social club with a competitive aspect, as Sam says, “these diverse personalities wouldn’t normally spend much time together but it’s so rewarding to see how people adapt and connect with each other in joining forces and rising to the challenge of hitting that bullseye.”
When I ask Sam what it takes to make a good Lumber Punk he starts by clearing up a common misconception about axe throwing. He pointed out that (as I learnt in my warm up and training session) that it was not about strength but more about technique, understanding physics, having patience and understanding how to use weight, distance and rotation to achieve the goal of getting the perfect shot.
Sam spent a lot of time in Canada and fell in love with the sport, along with his business partner Tyson McMillan who is equally as passionate. Sam proudly boasts that they’ve never had anyone come in who they couldn’t get to stick an axe in the board. The guys make you feel safe and welcome and are really encouraging, with a real ‘you can do it’ attitude.
“We had a ninety six year old lady in here who threw one and got it to stick really quickly, she was ecstatic first of all, and once she had lost that apprehension she really did become a badass Lumber Punk and had a ball,” Sam tells us with as much pride and admiration as if it were his own Grandma.
Interstate competitions are soon to start up then maybe National, and who knows? Could we see this sport added to the Commonwealth games program? Definitely in my generation is my prediction.
Go down and see the gang at Lumber Punks for a social throw at Christmas. You will absolutely have the best fun and may let off some steam, but most of all, really surprise yourself. Go ahead punk, make your day! Visit lumberpunks.com for details.
IMAGE: Dan Maynard Photography