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August 1, 2017

Darts Academy: Get a Grip – The Mechanics of a Better Dart Grip

Person holding a dart aiming at a dart board

There is no one master way to hold a dart; if it gets you that T20 reliably and feels right, then it’s a legitimate dart grip. A duffer might have a technically perfect grip but get skunked match in and match out; darts legend Phil “The Power” Taylor, meanwhile, has won 14 world championships with an unorthodox grip where he holds the dart at the back of the barrel. Advanced darts players can find success with any grip, but there are some core mechanics that can help you better control flight, velocity, and accuracy to maximize performance.

What do successful dart grips have in common?

Watch the pros play, or come chat with our staff dart gurus here at Purewater, and you’ll see a few mechanics that almost always apply.

  1. The dart tip should face up. You will never have an accurate throw if the tip points downward. The tip should be angled very slightly upward. In addition to the initial grip, assess your throw mechanics to ensure the tip never points downward at any point in the aim, backward portion of the throw, or release.
  2. Your grip should be just right. A perfect throw starts with perfect grip tension. You don’t want to hold it too loose, as this can affect accuracy and acceleration – or the dart may even slip from your fingers. But too tense, and you’ll throw off the mechanics of the throw. Settle on a firm but not white-knuckled grip.
  3. Free fingers should stay open. With most grips, only a few of your fingers will grasp the barrel, but what should you do with your free fingers? They should stay open, not closed toward the palm. This is the key to a smooth, fluid throw.
  4. Speaking of how many fingers should be used? This is entirely subjective. The most popular grips generally use 3 to 4 fingers (including thumb), but if you find success with a “pencil grip” (thumb + index), the go for it. And if you have magical voodoo powers that enable you to hit top banana with one finger on the barrel, then more power to you…
  5. Centre on the barrel. Your grip should never touch the tip, shaft, or flight of the dart, but should instead be focused on the dart’s balance point, which is based on its centre of gravity. Note that this may or may not be the middle of the barrel. Roll it in your palm to get a feel for where the centre mass is located.
  6. Choose a barrel size that works. Longer barrels generally require more finger grip, while short barrels are limited to a grip with fewer fingers. So what if your darts don’t match your grip preference? Don’t reinvent your grip, just buy the right darts. Our darts gurus would be happy to walk you through the inventory to find the perfect fit.

Better darts performance starts with a better grip. Come visit Purewater in-store for a FREE diagnosis of your grip and throw and you’ll be hitting maximum checkouts in no time.

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