Pandemic leads to challenges, new possibilities for local axe throwing crew

WBNS 10TV
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COLUMBUS - By now, many organized sports leagues have had to get creative to work around the stay-at-home order brought about by COVID-19 here in Ohio.

10TV talked to one man who explained how one league actually began during this pandemic.

Michael Coursey told 10TV the COVID-19 pandemic led to the creation of the Quarantine Axe Throwing League.

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The league was created by World Axe Throwing member Mike Morton and a small group of others, as a way to continue the sport after major events like the Canadian Open were canceled, but also to keep the community strong, he said.

“Really, axe throwing is secondary to the community for the World Axe Throwing League and for all of us,” Coursey, who is a founder of the local Valkyrian Steel Axe Throwing Club, said.

That’s why, Coursey explained, the stay-at-home order hit the local axe throwing community hard.

But there is one positive that’s come to light.

“The local Columbus, Ohio axe throwing group is really tight-knit and we love seeing each other but we don’t really get that chance to interact with people from New Zealand and Canada and Ireland and now we are,” Coursey said.

Through the newly created Quarantine League, axe throwers are assigned four matches each week, with people from all around the world, Coursey explained.

Throwers then compete over FaceTime, Instagram Live and other video sharing options.

They get 10 throws, keeping score while they compete, and then send the results back to the league.

“We’ve got people getting super creative,” Coursey said.

Some people, alternate use of shared targets, sanitizing between use, while others, like Coursey, use homemade options like the backyard or a basement.

“And so thanks to what the Quarantine Axe Throwing League is doing, we’re not only being able to practice and continue to you know, improve our axe throwing game, we’re able to build that community that we all love so much,” he said.

And while it might seem like a tough time to pick up a new sport, when it comes to axe throwing, it’s quite the contrary, Coursey said.

“If you’re out there and you want to learn more about this, now’s the time to do it,” he said. “The stakes are super low. Grab a board, paint a bullseye on it and get to thrown’.”

Valkyrian Steel Axe Throwing Club currently has six athletes ranked in the top 50 of the Quarantine Axe Throwing League.

To learn more about the club here in Columbus and the league, click here.