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What Is Dartitis?

Dartitis is a common condition that affects dart players. Without proper treatment, it can cause severe problems with motor skills. Amateurs and professionals alike can experience dartitis.

Understanding this condition, its causes, and treatments can ensure that you have a pain-free darts career.

So, here’s what you need to know about dartitis.

What Is Dartitis?

Dartitis is a complex condition that causes a player to lose the ability to throw a dart. It is both a physical and a psychological condition.

There haven’t been extensive studies of dartitis yet, but many doctors classify it as a form of dystonia. Dystonia is a muscle disorder that causes a person to lose control of the muscles, leading to twitching and spasm. You can have dystonia of any muscle group. Dartitis is a form of dystonia that affects the muscles in the hand and arm.

However, there is also a psychological component of dartitis. Some observers compare it to the yips in golf, which are involuntary spasms in the wrist partially caused by stress. Some forms of dartitis are extreme forms of stage fright when a player is physically unable to throw darts due to the psychological pressure of the game.

Symptoms of Dartitis

Dartitis has physical and psychological symptoms due to its mental and physical condition. Here is how you can recognize if you are dealing with dartitis.

The primary physical symptoms needed to diagnose dartitis affect the arm and hand. People with dartitis start losing control over the fine motor skills in their throwing arms. They experience involuntary spasms and cramps that sometimes even lock the arm and hand in place, preventing them from releasing the dart.

The spasms and cramps caused by dartitis affect patients’ daily lives and their darts performances due to persistent pain. Players with dartitis also struggle with holding their hand or arm in usual positions, whether to throw darts or do an everyday activity such as writing, due to the pain and spasms.

Psychological symptoms accompany dartitis and sometimes even precede the physical pain. Usually, people with dartitis feel immense anxiety or pressure to perform when approaching the target. This stress manifests in mental health issues, such as difficulty concentrating, depression, difficulty sleeping, and mood swings.

What Causes Dartitis?

Dartitis is not a well-studied condition, so doctors are unsure what causes it. The most accepted explanation is stress.

Whether they are amateurs, new professionals, or established stars, most sufferers of dartitis report feeling immense pressure to perform.

Dartitis is a neurological condition, not a muscular one. Like other forms of dystonia, it’s caused by problems with nerve-cell connections.

Possible Treatments for Dartitis

Unfortunately, there are no accepted treatments for dartitis as this condition is still yet to be studied. However, there are a few treatments that previous patients have used to help manage the condition.

The primary treatment for dartitis is relaxation. Although dartitis is a physically debilitating condition, the leading causes are often psychological and neurological. Reducing stress through meditation, lowered expectations, and even taking time away from the sport is the best treatment for the condition. A professional sports psychologist can help create a regimen to reduce stress and dartitis.

Changing how you practice darts is crucial to getting over dartitis, whether that looks like an extended break or simply taking time away from the most high-pressure aspects of the sport. Many patients experience success with changing their approach to darts, whether by playing in low-pressure settings such as solo outings until the condition relents or switching their grip. Changing the throwing technique reduces some mental blocks and gives the muscles a break.

Since dartitis is a physical condition and a psychological one, the treatment should include a mix of psychological and physical support. Some previous patients report success with physical therapy.


Dartitis is a form of dystonia that causes involuntary muscle spasms in the throwing arm and hand.

Dartitis is considered a physical and psychological condition. Symptoms include physical pain, spasms, cramping of muscles, and mental issues such as anxiety and feelings of pressure.

To prevent dartitis, stay in tune with your emotions before matches and create a proactive plan to manage pressure.

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.