New Game….New Dangers

I need to write about this incredibly important subject to warn you of the dangers of a sport that I’ve recently taken up.

This sport requires:

  • excellent balance;
  • pin point precision;
  • dedication and repeated practice of repetitive actions;
  • a good head for numbers.

Yes, I’m not kidding. I’ve taken up darts!!!

We have a cultural change program going on at work and we have a glorified sports and social club in our office. One of the things this little committee (that I’m a part of) have done is install a darts board.

And I must confess, I’ve really rather taken to the game, but it’s also caused me some problems. I should add the the squeamish can read on, there are no descriptions of gory holes in the head or feet coming up.

Darts Players and Culture

I’m slightly baffed by darts players and culture. Given the list of attributes above, you’d maybe expect the stereotypical darts player to be a geeky, thin, glasses-wearing mathematician type.

So it’s slightly confusing that it’s mostly played by hairy, overweight man who’ve spent too long in the pub.

And what’s with all the women that are forced to follow it. IF you ever watch it on the telly there’s always bikini-clad models walking around. At work, we ordered the board, surround, scoring machine and a few sets of darts from a company called Red Dragon Darts. When it arrived it came with a catalogue which was more soft-porn than precision sport. I don’t link to their website for similar reasons – I almost couldn’t condone them as supplier!


The Game

The game is quite addictive you know. Having invested £12 (not much really) in my own darts (it’s much better if you get used to a set that you always use) I not only play the odd game, but I’m practicing by playing solitaire “round-the-clock” – hit all the numbers from 1 to 20 in order.

You have to get worse before you get better too. When you start you could hit pretty much anything, but, aiming for twenty, as you do, you usually end up hitting anything from 12 through to 18. 12 and 18 give you pretty good scores. As you improve that range narrows, and you start hitting more 1’s and 5’s. These are NOT good scores. This is the stage I’m at.

As for hitting doubles…that’s a different matter altogether.


I said it was dangerous. Shortly after I started playing my shoulder started to ache. I thought this was a general wearing-out type pain, but then Sally said “Maybe it’s the darts?”, and I think she’s right. It puts a lot of tension on very specific parts of the arm, and the repetitive action can certainly take it’s toll.

Also…you may remember my stomach pain from my long bike ride a couple of months back (see the bottom half of this post), well, I reckon this has actually turned out to be darts-related too. When I throw my arrows I tend to lean forward and put all my weight on my front (right) leg. I think my hip flexor was getting quite a lot of strain put on it by this with the result that cycling made it flare up and become painful.

Not kidding…you can really do yourself an injury playing darts. And not necessarily one that involves being hit with a pointy stick.

You have been warned!