- Barrel shape
- Barrel material
- Barrel texture
- Point (static vs. hammerhead)
- Dart weight
- Shaft material
- Shaft length
- Flights of various materials and shapes
Darts: a game where participants compete with one another by throwing small arrow like devices at a target that is round and has numbers and sections and an inner bull with an outer bull and so on. Darts now refer to the standard game with a specific bristle board design and a set of rules. Rules that are general to the game and rules that govern games like, “501,” “301,” and “Cricket.”
Darts is a traditional pub game that was and is commonly played in the United Kingdom as well as other places in Europe and across the pond here in the America’s.
Wikipedia tells hits history in a terse form, i.e., “The dartboard may have its origins in the cross-section of a tree. An old name for a dartboard is "butt"; the word comes from the French word but, meaning "target". In particular, the Yorkshire and Manchester Log End boards differ from the standard board in that they have no treble, only double and bullseye, the Manchester board being of a smaller diameter, with a playing area of only 25 cm across with double and bull areas measuring just 4 mm. The London Fives board is another variation. This has only 12 equal segments numbered 20, 5, 15, 10, 20, 5, 15, 10, 20, 5, 15, 10 with the doubles and triples being a quarter of an inch wide.”
There have been a variety of darts created over the years but the most common today is the tungsten dart. There are electronic darts but for this blog and for my efforts in tossing darts I remain a steel dart fan and enthusiast. I am recommending a book for novice darters but only because it appealed to me and my studies and rest assured most of the dart books out there are outstanding. In short, find one if this one does not fit your needs and get it. I can tell you when I started to play over twenty years ago, before I laid down my darts in 96, I tossed darts for several years without knowing some very important and critical mechanics, etc., of the dart game. As I take up once again my steel darts I have found a fountain of information to help make the game both enjoyable and competitive. Enjoy, diddle for the middle and let the darts fly!
Tuesday, February 21, 2017
Monday, February 13, 2017
Friday, February 10, 2017
- DO NOT try harder, that means tensing and stress conditions all detrimental to good darts. Breathe, do the relaxation process with the face, neck, shoulders with chest and back - breathe slowly, deeply, diaphragmatically to counter the effects. Don’t let frustration, anger and finally panic take over - breathe!
- Time on the line, the oche line. Remember that it took a lot of practice, training and competitive experiences to achieve the mastery of your darts so in the slump give yourself, your mind and your spirit a break. Take the time on the line at practice and in the game until things balance out and ride the river on an even keel. As you gain time and experience and master the dart arts this process will take less and less time even in the heat of a game when one dart scuds out so your next just hits, “ON-Target.”
- Remember, you don’t have to re-learn the physiokinetics involved, you just have to dig down and raise them back up to the surface. They are, if you did your part well, just deeper down in our brains conditioned response storage where they go when not used regularly, natural for all of us, and when triggered the tape will run again and in far less time than it took to record that tape, “Click-n-whirr” off you go to most excellent darts.
- Know and understand the dart arts, then assign appropriate expectations and then live up to them. Allow reasonable and appropriate time to reestablish that connection, it’s there and will rise up when called. Maybe a tad slowly after time away or in that slump but rest assured it is there and will return.
- Work your own game, don’t compare yours to others regardless of their skill level. It is about you and you alone, in essence others have noting to do with how you master the dart arts but if you allow them influence they can definitely stall that progress. It ain’t about them, it is all on you, make it so. Stay within yourself regardless and let your game begin - game on!
- Proper perspective is necessary to ensure proper attitude and mental state and mental set of mind so that you can circumvent or at least breeze by frustration, anger and panic when your darts fall from grace.
- Finally, similar to other professions and professionals always, I mean always, do a AAR or After Action Report where you analyze your dart arts, find mistakes and improvements, etc., then discuss your findings with others for input and then synthesize a new strategy, tactics and goals to achieve mastery. Remember, be realistic in your expectations and be patient in allowing enough time to get there, to regain your darts and to achieve mastery.
- Lastly, a reminder, it all comes down to and is about the oche line as this is where the rubber meets the road and how you manage this is how you get steel belted radial tires with tread that will handle all kinds of roadway with all kinds of side roads and intersections where things will engage you toward distraction and so on effecting your drive, make it so helmsman.
- Some hints for regaining mastery:
- Use visual-imagery while practicing to simulate previous successful matches. This is a form of self-hypnosis that is used by all professionals to improve their game.
- Use visual-imagery before every game and each time you step up to the oche line use it to see your game before you actually play your game.
- In the game, keep your mind in the hear and now, the present moment. Focus only on the dart in the throw hand as if it is the only dart you get. Focus and be aware of the dart in hand, your dart kamae, the board and the target. Feel your body for positive relaxation then see the dart, see the trajectory, see it hit the target then let it go.
- Be effortless when at the oche line until you step past to retrieve your darts.
- Once a dart hits the board, forget it and let it go no matter its final destination and score. Make a mental change for the next throw and focus only on that dart. All else fades instantly into the past where it belongs. This is how a scud can be transformed at the next throw into that perfect dart.
- Make the experience less about competition, more about just your throw in the moment and let go of everything else. It is likened to those practice sessions where we all seem to throw so well, let the match be like practice, practice and practice. Just another practice session to perfect your dart arts.
- Final recommendation, don’t take it so serious and let fun be a mainstay. Your seriousness must be balanced and tempered with having fun, fun makes things work and that means in all of life’s endeavors, master life at the oche line!
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