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Neil Wild wants to be a better dart player. He enlisted our assistance for a coaching day at Rileys in Wolverhampton. This is what we did!

Wild Thing - We Will make Your Darts Sing!

Posted: 13.09.11 in Darts Performance Centre Blog category

Neil Wild wants to be a better dart player. He enlisted our assistance for a coaching day at Rileys in Wolverhampton. This is what we did!

 

I`ve  learnt more about my game in one day of coaching than in 12 years I’ve been playing darts”! Fact or Fiction?

Wild Thing

I was recently approached by Neil Wild, a dart player from Wolverhampton. Neil has aspirations to join the PDC. What struck me about Neil was his motivation and his desire to succeed. It was these attributes that persuaded me and my colleague Andy Humphrey to travel to Rileys in Wolverhampton to meet him last Saturday.

Moving forward to later on Saturday evening Neil posted on his Facebook page how he felt the session with us went : “I`ve  learnt more about my game in one day than in 12 years I’ve been playing darts!”

Can that be true? Was Neil so hyped up after the day’s coaching that it made him exaggerate the true value of what we had achieved? You decide!

Video Analysis

The first thing we did was take a look at Neil’s throw using our slow motion video analysis kit. Most dart players can feel when they have thrown a good dart or a bad one. This internal feedback helps players adjust their technique.  Dart players can also learn a massive amount from watching their throw in slow motion on a monitor (external feedback) as Neil was about to find out. We detected a flaw in Neil’s technique; at certain times of a game (always on the third dart) he would snatch the dart.

Neil, “I have had this problem for the 12 years I have been playing darts. Seeing the video made me realise what was happening. I have now practised for two days trying different methods and have beaten it; the snatch of the dart has vanished”!

Here is some of the video we shot:

Hmmm, what is solving that problem worth to a dart player? Neil may have continued for another 12 years with this same flaw. How many extra points will he gain on the dart board in that time?  Details of our video analysis service can be found at WeCoachDarts.com. So convinced yet?

No? OK:

What is Your Aim?

Another thing the video picked up was how Neil was aiming the dart. This is such a common flaw in a player's throw. We have seen it plenty of times, usually a player brings the dart from the side of the face through to release. Neil is also adding an adjustment to his game we have suggested-it will have a positive impact.

Statistics

We ran Neil through some of our matrix games and took down his averages. How else can you identify any improvements in your game or any weaknesses for that matter if you do not have any statistics to demonstrate how your skills are improving? No more guessing how his game went anymore, Neil now has a range of statistics that we can all use to monitor his performance.

 

Practice

We showed Neil some of our ideas of how to practise. Yes that’s right, how to practise. By this we really mean, how to learn. So many players think practice is banging away at 501 or games where you have to hit this treble and this double and then ping a dart in the 0 of the 10 on the outside of the board! It can be classed as practice we will begrudgingly admit, you could argue you are building muscle memory for example. Mind you, who wants their muscle to remember how to hit a number off the board?

The key question with your practice is what learning is going on? None if the practice regime we hinted at above rings some bells with you.  The majority of practice time is wasted hammering away at 501 matches or meaningless games, why? It is because for the majority of the time you are practising skills you have already mastered. To have any benefit you need to isolate the areas you struggle with and practise them.

That’s how you learn to play better darts and why Neil is convinced he learned more in one day with us than in 12 years of 501 matches and practice!

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The Darts Performance Centre is a resource to assist dart players of all standards play better darts. All the areas mentioned in this blog are covered on the website including one to one advice with Paul or Andy via our interactive diary area.

Membership is £25.00 per annum.

We also offer group coaching days and we will shortly be arriving at a darts centre near you for one on one video analysis sessions - please register for free to join our mailing list to find out when and where we will be.

 

Author: Paul Gillings ( paul@dartsperformancecentre.com )

 

 

 

Author: Paul Gillings and Andrew Humphrey ( paul@dartsperformancecentre.com )