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The second night of The Darts Experiment.Team Kasbah go under the analysis microscope,will this help Team Kasbah rock or what?

Darts Experiment Blog - Night 2 (the detailed version)

Posted: 09.03.11 in Darts Experiment Blog category

The second night of The Darts Experiment.Team Kasbah go under the analysis microscope,will this help Team Kasbah rock or what?



The Darts Performance Centre arrived “mob” handed for the second night of the Darts Experiment with three of the contributors to the website bringing to life their pages. Pete Williams from Silicon Coach UK, BDO player Anthony Urmston-Toft and who is the original “Darts Experiment” player travelled down from Manchester. Andy Humphrey the newest addition to the Darts Performance Centre team and whose expertise in bio-mechanics has had a significant impact on the website for all our members in the short time he has been involved was in attendance to see if he could have the same impact with Team Kasbah.

Our Aims

We strongly believe that for a player to reach the absolute peak of their game they need a repeatable technique. Do not believe anyone who says otherwise! You will not reach your potential if you rely on a technique that is flawed and that will break down under pressure. The problem for dart players of course is who do you trust to advise you? Darts has managed to circumnavigate conventional coaching theory and practice to a great extent, well until now anyway! There were none of these concerns for Team Kasbah last night; they had an academically qualified team with a wealth of experience of human movement in sport and coaching, lucky Team Kasbah!


One final point here, a player can easily throw away sound advice believing what they have always done is right (despite never really improving even after many years) or that maybe they believe they are too old to change or many other excuses that emanate from having a closed mind. The player that genuinely wants to improve and is prepared to reflect and consider advice given to them and at least try the ideas out are the players that will, over time, slowly get better and better. I had high hopes that Team Kasbah now trusted us and would be open minded, however, I was still surprised (and delighted) with what happened last night!


Stage 1- The Analysis Zone

Myself (Paul Gillings) and Pete Williams ran the video zone and the players came up in pairs. The process works well. We take each player thought their pre-throw routine to ensure they are reaching the oche to throw in the correct frame of mind and have the same stance each and every time they throw.


One fantastic addition to what we are doing is the new SightRight invention. The theory behind the device is to get a player central on the oche. This is for a number of reasons, if a player has or can develop a repeatable straight action there is only one place the dart is heading from a central start, the twenty bed. The second “light bulb moment” is that you can then optimise the weight of your throw no matter what side of the board you are going for. If you stand to the right of the board you need a stronger throw to get to the left hand side than you do to the right. Players perceive they have `”favourite doubles”, SightRight quashes that theory with some practice. We have a number of Team Kasbah converts anyway and the results were impressive.


After the players were set they threw some darts! We had one camera “face on” and one from the side view. Each player was shown their throw from the different angles, in slow motion and with various dots and lines indicating changing release points or head tilt. Some players made some fascinating discoveries, one Team Kasbah member had quite a pronounced jump that he had no idea he was doing. We will put the videos onto the Darts Performance Centre channel for you to see the throws and any diagnosis.


Stage Two – Drill The Technique

The players then took their analysis sheets to Andy Humphrey to hone any tweaks we had recommended and to get a second opinion on what we had suggested. This aspect of our service worked really well. The pressure of throwing and then, for all the players last night, seeing themselves for the first time on video can be overwhelming and it is difficult to take everything in. The session with Andy allowed them the opportunity to reflect on what they had just done and was a really valuable addition to the learning process last night.


Stage Three – The Kit Work-Shop

A boom area in the performance analysis of sport in recent years is the development of kit, the fastest running shoes, the most aerodynamic cycling kit or football boots that can help you bend or dip the ball have all come to the fore. Science has infiltrated darts, no question about that, however, a lot of players still refuse to analyse their own kit and test whether they are in fact giving themselves the best chance of success.


We did have some resistance from a couple of player`s last night. One in particular has used the same set up for twenty odd years and looked at me as if I was barmy when I tried to persuade him to see Anthony. However, remember the piece about having an open mind? This player changed his flights after seeing Anthony`s skilful and compelling demonstrations and he is chuffed with the outcome he got (I know because he emailed and told me). Anthony demonstrated how different flights and stems can, depending on your technique alter the way the dart lands in the board. Team Kasbah players were genuinely amazed at the significant difference a small alteration can make. Please take a look at the player`s feedback if you are baffled as to why you have never thought of this before! We do like to challenge conventional thinking at The Darts Performance Centre.


Each and every player got something out of last night and all the coaches in attendance truly believe that “learning” took place and that team Kasbah are firmly on the first rung of their performance improvement ladder.


We have a sports psychology lecturer coming next week! I can`t wait!


All the advice, tips and ideas as well as the opportunityu to have your throw analysed are on our website at just £25.00 per annum.

Author: Paul Gillings ( paul@dartsperformancecentre.com )

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