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Aidan has worked out there are 4 types of dart players, which one are you?

Who Are You?

Posted: 22.05.13 in Throw Like A Pro Blog category

Aidan has worked out there are 4 types of dart players, which one are you?

 NEWSFLASH!!!!! Playing darts isn’t easy! Who knew?

Throughout the past 18 months, I have been on a crazy journey, with some brilliant highs and bitterly frustrating lows. I picked up a set of darts for the first time in earnest, all the way back in September 2011. Since then, I have seen a lot, done a lot, and thrown A LOT!

Starting out, and the objective was clear. Clear as crystal...

Become a professional darts player.

I am going to be honest here... I thought it would be an easy process. How hard can it be? I offered the biggest insult possible to those who make a living from this wonderful game by entertaining such thoughts. But at the time, I thought a realistic expectation was to be at a professional standard within two to three years.

I have accomplished some major milestones along the way, but am I anyway close to that standard? God no... In an attempt to monitor my development through the game, I have made some interesting observations in the last year or so. I have seen four types of darts player in action. I will tell you where I think I am in this list, if you contact me through twitter (@A_Farrelly) and I would love to hear if you agree or disagree with this list!

1.       A Sociable Player

2.       A Regular Player

3.       A Classy Player

4.       A Professional Player

A Sociable Player


The Sociable player will go to the pub for a few pints, and throw some darts while he is there. He is as liable to pick up a set of house darts as he is to have his own set with him. Now, don’t be fooled. He is terrible on the 60’s, but if he swaps down to the 19’s, he could do damage with every 6th dart. They are liable to hit a double on the first attempt if they’re lucky, or it could end up taking them 20 darts to hit the double. Don’t suffer with nerves, as they really don’t mind if they win or lose.


This type of darts player wouldn’t practice if you paid him! He plays for one reason only: Fun!


Whatever comes to hand!

Pre-Throw Routine

‘Sure I just stand at the oche and throw.’

3 Dart Average

0 – 40.

A Regular Player


The Regular has started to take the game a little bit more seriously. He has invested in his own set of darts from the local supplier. Plays for the local team, and is a regular week in week out. In terms of consistency, has started banging in some 180’s, but is as liable to notch up two or three 26 or 45 scores in every leg. Solid enough on the doubles, but the concentration wouldn’t be brilliant and can get frustrated quite easily. Starts feeling the nerves during big matches, which doesn’t help.


This player might set up a board at home, and throw a bit at it. The structure of the practice would only be to throw at the Treble 20. Gets bored throwing at the doubles.


They have their own set of darts. Liable to change quite often, try different sets with length of stems, flights etc.

Pre-Throw Routine

The search for consistency develops, and this player will focus heavily on how they stand at the oche, how they throw etc.

3 Dart Average

40 – 55

A Classy Player


We are getting serious now. Each pub has at least one ‘Classy’ player. Once warmed up, this player is lethal. They could hold the board all night if they want. Their minimum score would be a steady 60, with at least two of the three darts knocking in or around the treble’s door. It’s not just that they throw well; they know they are better than everyone else in the club. They enter singles tournaments around the county, and run quite well. Don’t suffer with nerves.


They put in at least one hour each night on the practice board, swapping between scoring and doubles. Might do some work on out shots as well.


They wouldn’t change anything unless there was an obvious problem with their throw. They have a stockpile of the same stems and flights.

Pre-Throw Routine

Solid as a brick house! Video analysis would show very little deviation, as of course this is a vital cog in successful darts.

3 Dart Average

60 – 75

A Professional Player


We have seen them in exhibitions; they make your blood boil with how easy they make it look. Over time, they have established themselves as a brilliant player, never needing more than 18-20 darts to finish a leg. This is the elite group, playing County standard darts for a long time, and maybe break through to some TV tournaments, Q-School etc. They will probably play with two or three different darts teams, out four or five nights a week throwing.


Some pro’s practice 5-6 hours a day, it’s their job after all. If not that, they will throw competitive darts a lot!


They could have their own custom made arrows. They may have secured a sponsorship deal for all their equipment, and won’t change. (Unless it’s Taylor or Barney)

Pre-Throw Routine

Like everything else, it’s sickening! They will throw each dart with meticulous precision, never changing! They will be so used to it that it’s not even in their conscious.

3 Dart Average

75 - 100

So what category do you fit in? And what will it take for you to progress on to the next stage? I have it quite clear in my head, but in practice it’s a different story. It’s ok to say practice, practice and more practice. Yes, you will get better with this, but what if you are practicing the faults in your throwing action? It’s like learning how to drive, there is no point driving loads before your test if you are coasting every time you come to a stop.

Bad habits are all too common in darts. And when they become natural elements in our throw, it’s a huge struggle to adapt. But I am with the Darts Performance Centre, they can help. And look at how others, especially the professionals do it. When it’s on TV, don’t just watch it. Study it. See how Justin Pipe approaches the oche the exact same way every time, or how Dean Winstanley carries out the same pre-throw routine every time.

It’s a great game this. But anyone out there who thinks it’s simply about stepping up to the oche and throwing three little pieces of tungsten at a board, well you can take my place over here in the SILLY CORNER



Meet Aidan

Aidan has been a fan of darts since a young age, although he didn't pick up his first set if arrows until he was 23. In that time, Aidan has been dedicated to finding out what it takes to become a professional. He plays with two club teams in his County in Ireland.

Aidan documents his ups and downs of improving his game, and explores some of the unknown, yet crucial elements of darts such as nerves, confidence and much much more.


Aidan teamed up with the Darts Performance Centre ahead of his battle with Raymond van Barneveld 12 months ago, a relationship which he admits has "helped me to focus on certain areas that needed improvement, and the support from Paul and Andy guarantees will make you a better dart player".

Aidan throws a 21g DPC dart. He loves to tell people that he has now lost count of the amount of 180s he has thrown. His highest checkout in a competitive leg is 130, and the closest he has come to a perfect leg was two maximums before crippling under pressure to finish out with a 15 dart leg.


His plan is simple: to be a Pro! Follow his journey right here!

Aidan welcomes any feedback, advice or questions. You can find him on twitter:

@A_Farrelly or email: throwlikeaprodarts@gmail.com


Author: Aidan Farrelly ( throwlikeaprodarts@gmail.com )

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