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Accuracy: the problem of getting better is that you get worse!

Coaching Clinic 32

Posted: 26.03.14 in Coaching Clinic Blog category

Accuracy: the problem of getting better is that you get worse!



This month Andy H discusses the phenomenon of how it can appear after practising hard, your darts seem to take a turn for the worse. If this happens to you, don’t panic, change your darts or try any other quick fix-it is normal! Andy explains why! 

Whenever we practice a game we improve. More practice means improved accuracy and consistency. Practice increases the certainty of hitting the target.

How do we get worse? Well the problem with getting better is that your first dart will be more accurate and closer to its intended target. Whereas before the marker dart would perhaps be an inch away from the target as a result of the improvements in accuracy it is now half an inch away from the target. Great! I hear you say. Well it is great, your accuracy is improving, but how is this getting worse?

Well the problem starts here. You are working from a marker half the distance away than it was before. This means not only has your accuracy got to improve but so has your adjustment. You will tend to find that if you park a dart half inch above the treble that your next dart is dropping below, probably by an inch, which is because you are used to adjusting by that distance. Do not worry though, the adjustment will tighten up and you will be able to start working from the marker.

The problem is that the adjustment takes longer to catch up than the improvement in accuracy.What will happen is that whereas before you could do a leg in perhaps 18 darts, you will find that now even though you are more accurate that you are doing a leg in 23 darts. This can be soul destroying, you look at your darts and they are all around the bed but not dropping in the treble. This is the time where most players have a crisis of confidence, stating to all and sundry that they have lost their game or they are having a bad patch, when in actual fact they have got better and more accurate.

What should you do?

First and most important is that you should see the improvement in accuracy as a positive. You should then realise that your adjustment will catch up. It may take a couple of weeks but trust me it will. Secondly this is your choice. You can take a break from match games while this transition takes place, that way you are not putting yourself under undue pressure to perform and also not undermining your good work by losing silly games you know you should have won. If however you do carry on playing do your best not to get frustrated with what you are doing, this is the worst thing you can do. What will happen then is that you will start changing your technique, looking for what is wrong when actually there is nothing wrong other than the slight adjustment has not caught up with you improvement in accuracy.

So in summary, see the positives in improved accuracy, do not get disheartened if you lose your scoring when all your darts are around the treble. Keep doing what you are doing because it is working and do not start changing things.

Coaching Room

The Darts Performance Centre has been running for 3 years now! Time flies. We have tried many things and helped a whole load of players along the way. We started as a self-help website but soon ventured from the virtual world to the real world, taking our video analysis kit to various tournaments and venues such as Rileys.

The dream has always been to have our own coaching room where players can visit us and practise, get advice and have their throw analysed. The dream turned to reality last weekend when our coaching room was used for the first time to launch our new darts, the Gun Metal Elite darts.

The darts co-designer, Kev Brown or BigGun to his friends came along to try out the new darts and to take part in a small tournament we organised in order that the darts could be given a proper test run! The day was a great success and we will soon be releasing details on some of the other events we have planned and of course details of how you can improve your darts by paying us a visit.

Watch this space!

Picture courtesy of Stuart Miles/FreeDigitalPhotos.net


TheDarts Performance Centre is a resource to assist dart players of all standards play better darts. The site is arranged as an online coaching manual. There is advice on technique, nerves, psychology, goal setting, practice games, an area to log your statistics and an interactive area where your darting questions are answered by two sports scientists, one with 30 years dart playing experience. You also get an invite to our free but exclusive members only events and acess to our members only darts coaching app! Membership is £25 per year!

Author: Paul Gillings and Andrew Humphrey ( paul@dartsperformancecentre.com )

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