Throw with the Flow or Important to Shorten?

Winmau.com recently published this detailed look at two of their top players’ style. It is an interesting piece and prompted a DW discussion over players throw styles that we admire. More on that later. In the meantime here some of the original articles together with a few of our DW Coach’s comments. You can read the original piece here https://bit.ly/2LtbqNQ

Winmau.com

With Daryl Gurney continuing his journey with Winmau for another five years, we thought we’d take a look at his ultra-modern throw against the smoothest in the World from Steve Beaton, who recently threw a scintillating 9-dart finish on the European Tour.

Set-up analysis

Daryl has a superb approach to the dartboard, making sure he can see exactly what he’s aiming at long before he takes his stance at the oche, this sets him up target ready – immediately. His eyes are focused on the exact point he’s aiming at, where he wastes no time in raising the dart to its load position.

Daryl’s dart pre-throw position is “high” and natural, but he uses a very slight shoulder load just before he gets ready to throw, that is his trigger movement to start.

DW Coach:This is very true, the interesting thing will be to see how this throw changes over time or whether Daryl will be able to retain it. Often, with time, wear and tear and baggage, small changes appear within any throw. These can be exaggerated and mentally difficult, with short concentrated throws“.

Steve floats his way into the oche, where he takes a relatively central position, with a very relaxed and comfortable looking stance, where he already knows to throw and simply lets his arms flow with very little conscious effort. Steve’s longer backswing and soft grip help him maintain his silky, to-die-for rhythm.

DW Coach: It is almost impossible to overstate the quality of Steve’s throw, it has been thirty-five years in the making with any changes being slow, incremental and natural. I suspect that the update of his darts also helped significantly.

Points of Interest

With one of the games shortest backswings, Daryl has set himself up with one of the most compact modern throws in world darts, where he’s only using forward momentum in his throw.

This technical aspect sets Daryl apart as very unique and is a very modern way of playing the game. As soon as his dart is released he has moved to take the next dart and is ready to go, almost before the previous dart has the landed in the board, allowing him to get into a superb high scoring flow. This “Flow” is vital to understand, for you to get into autopilot on your throw and how you naturally achieve higher peaks in your game.

Daryl’s release and throw are not as hard as you’d expect with such a short throw. He uses a smooth acceleration that allows him to fight the darts on a smooth curve. Paying attention to this “flight” can help players improve, as the more direct the line to the board the harder you need to throw.

DW Coach:Daryl’s throw that reminds me of cricketer Graham Gooch. In the middle of his career, Graham remodelled his approach and virtually eliminated his backswing. This reduced the possibility of straying offline and reduced the margin for error. Players such as Colin Osborne also had short throwing styles, Daryl’s lesser use of force may also reduce the susceptibility to tension errors and thus be a genuine innovation”.

Whilst Steve’s throw is languid by comparison, it is by no means a slow throw as Steve reels off the darts in pretty rapid succession.

What we can learn from these throws is that both world class players have clearly identified and made their throw unique to them and their physical characteristics.

Summary

Both players have many superb principles in common that you can apply to your game. These are Superb setup, posture and alignment that allows either player to find their natural rhythm under the most intense pressure.

Stephen Feeney – SightRIght global coach specialist said: “I’m looking at both throws from a pure accuracy point of view, both players are giving themselves almost the perfect look at the target they wish to hit, making them two of the most exciting throws to watch and learn from in the accuracy area”.

DW Coach: “Comparing players is always difficult, and a little controversial. I strongly suspect that players throws are a combination of their personality, physical characteristics and what they watch in their formative years. These two are remarkable examples of wholly different styles that can be hugely effective.

As I always say “it’s more a set of guidelines than a code”, it will be interesting to see whether Daryl’s ‘modern throw’ can withstand three decades of rigorous use and still be as effective as Steve’s”

The body of this piece first published at winmau.com

Pic credit: Winmau / Chris Sargeant / Tip Top Pics