A common saying in the Boy Scouts is “A sharp knife is a safe knife.” This is because a sharp knife will seldom slip from its task and embed itself in your hand or leg. The same can be said for an ax or hatchet.
Too many people allow their axes to become far too dull for safe use. Without an ideal edge for the task it's designed for, an axe can bounce from its target and go rogue.
When this happens, it becomes far more dangerous than any dull knife. After all, an axe has much more heft and is generally used with much more force than any knife blade.
Imagine what would happen to the bones in your leg if that log you were trying to split decided to bounce your axe directly towards you.
Hopefully, with proper form, this is unlikely to happen anyways. But, just in case, you should probably make sure all your edges are honed to a razor edge.
For a lesson in how to make this happen, watch the video on the next page.