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How to Play Darts: The Ultimate Guide for Beginners

Darts has quickly gone from a pub game to one of the most popular sports in the world. So, with the increasing popularity of darts, you may be wondering how to play darts?

If you’re interested in learning more about playing darts but don’t know where or how to start, you’ve come to the right place.

Keep reading, and we’ll guide you through the rules and provide you with some tips, so you can learn how to play darts the right way.

How to Throw Darts Correctly

While the rules of different darts games can change, the technique of throwing a dart stays the same. Your throwing technique is the difference that separates a good player from an average player.

So, let’s start with the three main areas to consider when perfecting your technique.

The Grip

The key to a consistent, accurate dart throw is firstly knowing the correct way to hold your darts.

You can hold a dart with two, three, four, or five fingers. We’d advise that you choose the one that’s most comfortable for you. However, most players tend to use a three-finger grip.

The best way to choose the correct grip is to hold the dart and throw it from where most of the weight is focused.

The most straightforward grip to start with is the “pencil grip.” In this grip, you hold the dart like a pencil, with your opposing thumb holding against the first two fingers, the index and the middle.

The grip is easy to achieve, and it provides a solid level of stability and balance while throwing.

If you feel that adding a finger to the hold makes things more comfortable for you, then that’s okay, as it’s firstly a matter of preference and comfort when starting.

However, the barrel weight usually dictates the best number of fingers. For example, heavy tungsten and brass barrels are best to hold using four fingers, while a lighter nickel dart gives the best hold with three fingers and a softer grip.

While holding the dart, be sure not to grip it so hard that it disrupts your technique or is too relaxed to affect the dart’s flight path.

Your Stance

While playing darts, you throw from a predetermined distance: a throw line, a toe line, or most commonly, the ‘Oche.’

The Oche is at a distance of 7 feet and a quarter of an inch from the dartboard.

When practicing your throw, people tend to underplay the importance of the stance. Of course, your stance is an essential aspect of your throw. As, maintaining a good stance improves stability, thus improving the consistency of your throw.

There is no right or wrong way to stand while throwing darts. As long as you can keep your balance, it’s whatever feels most comfortable for you.

Despite being a matter of preference and comfort, some basics and fundamental mechanics can help you make the most out of the way to stand while throwing.

However, a golden rule while taking your stance is to lead with the foot of your dominant hand. So basically, if you’re a right-handed thrower, you’ll place the right foot forward.

This shifts your center of balance towards your front foot for maximum stability and accuracy while throwing.

The Throw

Since we’ve perfected your grip and stance, it’s time to learn how to master the throw.

The first thing to consider while throwing the dart is your arm position. Always begin your throw by extending your arms and raising it parallel to the ground.

Next, while comfortably gripping the dart and taking your stance, focus on where you want to land it.

If you set your arm correctly while gripping the dart, you should have a great line of sight down the barrel of your dart.

After lining up your aim, it’s time to build up the throwing movement. Start by pulling your forearm back while keeping your upper arm and shoulder steady.

The key to a consistent throw is to try and keep your upper arm and shoulder area as steady as possible. At the same time, focus on your forearm and wrist movement.

One mistake that many beginners fall into is that they pull their hands back after the release of the dart. This affects the stability and direction of the dart while in flight.

Therefore, we recommend that you extend your arm through the release of the dart. The difference will surprise you!

Benefits of Playing Darts

Now that you’ve learned how to master the art of throwing darts, you should also know how surprisingly beneficial it can be for your health.

While you might think that dart players are seriously unfit, playing darts has great mental health benefits.

Improves Balance

Nothing says hand, eye coordination like darts. However, Darts is more than just a throw. Darts is also highly beneficial in helping improve your stability and balance over time.

According to some studies made by Vrije University in Amsterdam, darts positively affect motor and sequential performance for people who play regularly.

Helps Keeps The Mind Sharp

If you know a thing or two about dart games, you’ll know that most games require some degree of quick mathematical and arithmetic thinking.

Regular strategic thinking and basic mathematical equations help keep the mind sharp, which is highly beneficial for older players.


So there you have it, a complete and comprehensive guide on how to play darts.

Although Darts can often be misconstrued as a simple game, it takes a lot of dedication, concentration, and hard work to master.

Michael Fielding

Michael Fielding

Michael has been playing Darts for more than 20 years and is passionate about helping others improve their game through his own experiences.