From the outside, the game of darts seems like an appealing, delightful, and less taxing type of sport. However, when you dig deep into the sport, you’ll be surprised to find how challenging and demanding this sport can get. In fact, most beginner players complain of being sore and tired after spending the whole day playing or practicing darts. And since we all have different desires regarding darts, one way of improving your game is by implementing darts exercise in your daily routine.
Now, whether you’re playing darts in a professional or a recreational setting, one of your main goals is to hit the target. But to do this, you’ll require a lot of physical and mental effort. Since your success is based on a combination of different muscles, you’ll need to work out these muscles routinely to have the right strength. So, in this guide, we will discuss several resistance darts exercises that could be instrumental to your success.
Getting Ready to Practice
To be good at darts, you need to practice and exercise regularly. This is one rule of thumb that any darts player must adhere to regardless of how talented he/she is. But, how long should you practice and which type of exercises should you perform?
When performing darts exercises, you don’t have to practice for an entire 10 hours each day. Doing this will only burn your energy up instead of helping you improve. Instead, you should come up with a weekly routine that will allow you to work out the different muscle groups within your body.
About the timing, 1—3 hours of daily practice should be enough. Lastly, before you commence your daily darts exercises, always make sure that you have the following.
- A notepad to track your progress.
- Somewhere safe to exercise.
- Dart accessories.
- A mat to exercise on.
- The right gear.
How to Exercise Like a Pro
1. Have a Plan
Just like any other sport, having a plan is one way of preparing your mind for what’s to come. You need to prepare your mind by freeing it from any distractions that can interfere with your routine practice sessions.
You need to think about the amount of time you’ll be practicing daily as well as the type of exercises you’ll be doing throughout the week. So, to do this, you can pick a notepad and draw a table that will show your daily training schedule.
2. Basic Warm-Up
So, once you’ve sketched a perfect daily practice routine, the next step is to have proper warm-up periods every day before exercising. Although this step is often overlooked, it helps to prepare your mind and body for the type of exercises you’ll be doing for the day.
It also helps to loosen up the body to avoid any injuries during your training sessions. Your body also feels fluid, comfortable, and ready to tackle any challenge that lies on the way.
Now, warming up can be done in several ways depending on your needs. Some people prefer to throw darts randomly on the dartboard to loosen up the muscles. Others prefer to stretch up major muscles and tendons to relax and ease specific group muscles before they start training.
3. Strengthen Your Posture
Whether you’re playing darts in a professional or a recreational setting, the right posture and balance will be essential to your overall success. In fact, if you happen to check most tutorials that teach about darts, you’ll realize that most of them insist on maintaining proper posture.
When playing darts, maintaining proper posture means standing straight behind the throw line. But to do that, you need to incorporate some exercises into your training sessions that will strengthen your core and give you the right balance. Here are three key exercises you can consider to improve your muscles;
- (A) The Bow and Arrow:
In this type of exercise, you’ll be required to lie down sideways with your knees bent and your hands stretched out. The main purpose of this exercise is to strengthen your back muscles and to improve thoracic rotation which is important when throwing darts. So, to do this, you’ll have to follow these steps.
- Start by positioning your knees at an angle of 90 degrees to your hips. Your arms should be stretched out at an angle of 90 degrees to your body.
- Push and pull your arms back and forth as if you’re drawing back an arrow.
- Exhale to draw in your abdomen then inhale to return to the initial position. This will help to strengthen your back muscles and relax the muscles on your arms.
- (B) Planks:
This is another key exercise that helps to improve your endurance while still allowing you to maintain proper posture when throwing darts. Here, you’ll need to follow these steps.
- Lay on a mat with your face facing down.
- Fold your elbows and forearms to have them support your body.
- Put your legs slightly apart.
- Exhale to engage your abdominal muscles.
- Stay in this position for a while before inhaling to relax your muscles.
This exercise is very important as it helps to relieve any strain on your shoulder joint to improve consistency.
- (C) Crunches:
Another important type of exercise is the crunch. Regarded as an effective core exercise, crunch focuses on strengthening your abdominal muscles, oblique muscles, pelvic muscles, your lower back, and hips.
Since these muscles are key in stabilizing your body, keeping them strong will help in improving your posture. So, to do a crunch, you’ll need to;
- Lie down facing up with your knees folded and hips-width apart.
- Place your arms over your chest and inhale.
- Exhale and start raising your upper body while keeping the lower body intact.
- Raise and lower your upper body a few rounds then relax.
4. Muscle Strengthening Exercises
In darts, stronger players have the advantage of being stable which is good when making accurate throws. But, to achieve a high level of stability, you need to perform muscle-strengthening exercises that focus on the upper body. Remember, playing darts means taxing the upper body especially the biceps, triceps, and shoulders.
Therefore, to avoid feeling stiff and weak in the upper body, you need to schedule strength exercises that condition the upper body. One of these exercises is to lift lightweight dumbbells that weigh anywhere from 2 to 13 pounds.
Another exercise you can employ in your routine is the triceps pushups. This type of exercise primarily focuses on the triceps brachii (a muscle found at the back of your arm) and the elbow joint as well.
So, by performing this exercise routine, you’ll manage to develop endurance which is key when playing at a professional tournament level.
Stretching, especially your hand and wrist, is very important when playing darts. In fact, this exercise is considered one of the best warm-up exercises before playing darts.
Even pianists stretch their fingers before playing the piano. The same case applies to singers who must warm-up their vocals before singing.
So, if you’re practicing darts, stretching your muscles will help you to move your arm and wrist more quickly and smoothly when throwing. Now, to flex your hand and wrist muscles, here are three effective exercises you can consider.
- The first one is to clasp your hands then extend them directly in front of you. Next, move them over your head then behind your back slowly.
- Another exercise is to clasp your hands then stretch them to the left across your chest then back to the right.
- The last exercise involves using a resistance band. Start by wrapping the band in a solid pole then move a few steps back. With the band stretched, hold it with your dominant arm and position yourself as if you want to make a throw. Move your arm back and forth while maintaining the tension to work out the relevant muscles.
6. Mental Alertness
When practicing darts, you need to spare some time to focus on your mental skills. Other than focusing on strength exercises, you need to take your time to indulge in activities that improve your concentration.
In this case, you can consider meditating about your success or reading books/watching videos that focus on mental alertness when playing darts.
Another way you can deal with mental alertness is by focusing on anger management. Now, the game of darts can sometimes put you under immense pressure. This mostly happens when you’re playing a hundred thousand dollar game and the odds are against you.
Since you’re likely to feel nervous when the game turns against you, learning how to focus in such situations can help you to get back in the game much faster. So, learning complex skills to calm your body in such stressful situations can be very important.
7. Improving Your Hand-Eye Coordination
When playing darts, one of the most crucial skills that can make a significant difference in your game is having excellent hand-eye coordination. This skill allows you to align your dart with the dominant eye to make a perfect throw.
But, to achieve that, you’ll need to boost the connection between your dominant eye and your dominant arm. In this case, you need to prioritize on exercises that work out your hand and your eyes in unison.
Exercises such as juggling can be considered in such cases. You can also ask a friend to join you in playing the catch game where you throw the ball to each other. By playing such games, at least once every week, you can easily improve your hand-eye coordination.
8. Practice Darts
As far as working out is concerned, dart exercises cannot be complete without practicing how to aim. This is a very important part of your weekly training sessions as it helps you to track your weekly improvement.
But, to practice darts, you need to have your own set of darts and a dartboard. You can also train alone or you can call friends and family over to play with you. When practicing alone, one of the areas you’ll need to focus on is improving your aim.
This can be done by focusing on hitting the doubles, the trebles, and the bulls. You can also practice hitting the double-ins and the double-outs which is important when starting or ending the 01 games.
9. Check Your Diet
Last but not least, you need to be very keen on your diet when practicing darts. Since most of the exercises you’ll be doing are strength exercises, a well-balanced diet is essential in rebuilding your muscles.
Here, you should incorporate a diet rich in proteins, minerals, and vitamins each day to have the right energy. This way, your body will have the right nutrient balance that will help you endure strenuous training programs.
If you’ve read this guide up to this point, then congratulations for you have won half of the battle. What remains from this point moving forward is for you to implement what you’ve learned. As you can see, the game of darts demands a lot.
To become a well-balanced player, you need to focus on all the aspects we’ve discussed which are; your physicality, mental awareness, strategy, and practice.
Lastly, you need to focus on your overall health by checking on your diet. This way, you’ll have the right energy to exercise which will be essential in boosting key muscles.
So, with that said, we believe that this guide has offered you the right information regarding the darts exercise. In case, you’d like to add a point or share your experience regarding darts exercises, then don’t hesitate to reach us in the comments section.