From the local pub to professional tournaments, darts is a game that is enjoyed by people around the world. There is something that takes place in every game that often comes as a surprise to newcomers. It’s the fact that dart players count so quickly. How do they do it?
The most important thing a dartist can do to get better at counting points is to practice. The more you practice counting, the more you will get familiar with the combinations and possibilities that exist. With enough practice, you could easily referee a tournament.
Many dart players are good at counting darts but they aren’t necessarily good at math. It’s just a matter of learning the combinations and numbers to the point where you can almost do them in your sleep.
As you will learn in this article, it also has to do with understanding how to close out a game, just as much as counting the points as the darts hit the board.
We will review a number of things you can do to get better at counting as well as review why dart boards are numbered in such a way that it focuses on accuracy.
How Do You Get Better At Counting In Darts?
If you want to get better at counting at darts, you are going to have to put your best foot forward. There are a few specific things you can do to get better but the more you practice, the better you will get.
Try the following to get better at counting in darts.
1. Score during Practice – If you practice regularly, and you should, don’t simply toss the darts at the board for accuracy, do it for counting as well. Play an imaginary game of 501 against yourself or just keep score as you go. You will find that your practice sessions take on an entirely new intensity.
2. No Electronics – If you get in the habit of using electronic counters or apps, you will not easily be able to count in your head. Don’t allow electronics to make you lazy. Learn how to count now and it will be a skill you carry with you for a very long time.
3. Observe – Take some time to watch professional matches on the Internet. As the darts are thrown, try to keep score and see if you can keep up with the scorekeeper. You should also try to anticipate how the player is going to throw their darts to close out the game.
4. Become a Scorekeeper – If you have the opportunity, offer to be the scorekeeper in a match. It can be a match that you are playing or you can even offer to keep score if a match is taking place at your local pub.
It really comes down to practice. The more you’re able to practice your counting, the better your skill will be.
It won’t take long before you are seeing the numbers in your head before you even calculate them. It will take some work at first but eventually, it becomes second nature.
How Much Of Darts Is Mental?
As is the case with anything in life, darts is part physical and part mental. There are even some emotional aspects to the game, especially when you are playing in a tournament. Just how much of the game is mental?
Playing darts is 90% mental and 10% physical. The concentration that is necessary to throw the darts accurately really takes a lot of mental clarity. The physical aspect is important, but without concentration, the darts are not going to land properly.
There is an easy way to tell just how much concentration goes into throwing darts. It can be seen in any tournament, and I would suggest that you watch quite a few on YouTube to get familiar with the sport.
As the dartist approaches the Oche, all of their concentration is on the board. Since they use an oche that is elevated, they don’t have to focus on their feet. In fact, they don’t even pay attention to their feet because they can feel their foot position when they take their stance.
Of course, you have to be prepared to remain focused on the board, even if there are distractions around you. These distractions may take place in a noisy pub and if you’ve ever seen a professional tournament, the distractions are off the chart.
Although darts is a mental game, it is also important to consider the physical aspects of the game as well. This is also something that has been debated by many who play darts.
Being healthy may help your game in ways that you don’t realize. Michael Smith, a top dart player understands this because he lost weight for the purpose of playing a better game and taking advantage of what the sport has to offer.
Then again, there are plenty of heavy dartists who claim that they get their center of gravity and play a better game because of their girth.
Why Is Darts 501 And Not 500?
One of the reasons why math can be difficult when playing darts is because the games are odd-numbered and not even-numbered. For example, the most popular games are 501 and 301. Why didn’t they just make it 500?
The main reason why they play 501 and not 500 is that a game of 500 could get boring. People would just continually aim for the treble 20 and you would rarely see them hit anywhere else on the board. Since it is a negative number, they have to aim for an odd number sooner or later.
You might also be interested in knowing that the game has progressed and evolved over the years. For example, the standard game of 301 was often played and it had to open with a double and close with a double.
Things have gotten simpler with the PDC rules of 501, but it is the sport that we have come to love.
Why Is A Dartboard Numbered The Way It Is?
When you look at the numbers on the dart board, it may seem as if they were placed at random without any rhyme or reason. Is that the case?
The dart board layout was specifically created to make it necessary to focus on accuracy. The high numbers are next to low numbers so if you have a dart that goes astray, it is going to be a bigger penalty.
Brian Gamlin is responsible for the layout of the dartboard. He designed it in 1896 with the thought that putting low numbers next to high numbers would penalize those who made a mistake and threw an errant dart.
Many dartists will aim for the triple 20 but there may actually be some reason why you would want to aim elsewhere. There are some thoughts that only the best players should go for the treble 20 each and every time.
The bottom line is, if you want to get better at counting darts, you need to practice. Take every opportunity to count, regardless of whether you are playing a quick match at the pub or throwing some practice darts in your basement. The more you practice, the better your math will be.