Why Do People Get Dartitis

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Are you a dedicated darts enthusiast, frustrated by an inexplicable hiccup in your game? Or perhaps you’re a casual player who’s heard of the infamous “dartitis” that plagues the world of darts? In the ever-competitive and precision-demanding game of darts, the term “dartitis” resonates like a dreaded echo. It’s an enigmatic condition akin to the yips in golf, rendering the simplest act of throwing a dart a Herculean task for those afflicted. Even legendary darter Eric Bristow couldn’t escape its grasp.

Join us on this journey through the perplexing world of dartitis, as we unravel the secrets of why people get Dartitis, delve into the nuances of a dart throw, and explore the mental and physical aspects that can leave the most seasoned darters struggling to hit their mark. Let’s decode this intriguing condition that’s not even found in the English dictionary and find out why so many suffer from dartitis.

Dartitis is a condition characterized by sudden and unexplained difficulty in releasing a dart with precision. It’s as if a mental or physical blockage disrupts the player’s smooth throwing motion, leading to erratic and inaccurate throws.”

Why Do People Get Dartitis

Dartitis is a condition that can affect darts players, and severely damage their performance. It is characterized by a sudden and unexplained loss in throwing accuracy and precision. Players with dartitis may find it difficult to hit their targets, and may even experience muscle spasms and tremors.

There is no one definitive cause of dartitis, but it is thought to be a combination of physical and psychological factors.

Physical Factors

  • Overuse: Dartitis is more common in players who play darts frequently and/or for long periods. Overuse can lead to inflammation and pain in the muscles and tendons of the forearm and shoulder.
  • Poor technique: Incorrect throwing technique can put unnecessary stress on the muscles and joints, and increase the risk of developing dartitis.
  • Injury: A previous injury to the forearm or shoulder may also increase the risk of developing dartitis.

Psychological Factors

  • Performance anxiety: Dartitis is often triggered by performance anxiety. Players who are feeling anxious about a particular game or tournament may be more likely to develop dartitis.
  • Negative self-talk: If a player starts to believe that they are no longer good at darts, or that they are going to throw badly, this can lead to a self-fulfilling prophecy.
  • Perfectionism: Players who are overly perfectionistic may be more likely to develop dartitis. The pressure to always perform at their best can lead to anxiety and stress.

Common Symptoms of Dartitis: Recognizing the Problem

Players with dartitis often experience a sudden loss of control during their throw, leading to a jerky or hesitant motion. They may find it difficult to release the dart smoothly, resulting in an inaccurate and inconsistent aim. This condition can cause frustration, anxiety, and, in some cases, a decline in performance.

Additionally, dartitis sufferers may exhibit signs of performance anxiety, self-doubt, and a lack of confidence, all of which can exacerbate the problem.

The most common symptom of dartitis is a sudden and unexplained loss in throwing accuracy and precision. Players with dartitis may find it difficult to hit their targets, and may even experience muscle spasms and tremors.

Other symptoms of dartitis may include:

  • Loss of confidence
  • Anxiety
  • Frustration
  • Aversion to playing darts

The Role of Muscle Memory in Dartitis

Muscle memory plays a crucial role in darts, and its relationship with dartitis is a topic of great interest. Muscle memory is the ability of the body to perform a specific action with minimal conscious effort. In darts, it’s the smooth, repetitive motion of throwing that allows players to achieve consistent accuracy.

Dartitis disrupts this natural muscle memory, causing the throwing motion to become hesitant and uncertain. This condition challenges a player’s ability to rely on the muscle memory developed over countless hours of practice. The exact mechanisms behind this disruption remain a subject of research and debate, but it’s evident that muscle memory is a key element in understanding dartitis.

Treatment of Dartitis

There is no one-size-fits-all treatment for dartitis. The best approach will vary depending on the underlying cause of the condition.

If the dartitis is caused by physical factors, such as overuse or injury, it is important to rest the arm and allow the muscles and tendons to heal. Once the arm has healed, physical therapy can help to strengthen the muscles and improve flexibility.

If the dartitis is caused by psychological factors, such as performance anxiety or negative self-talk, cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) can be helpful. CBT can help players to identify and challenge their negative thoughts and beliefs, and develop coping mechanisms for dealing with anxiety.

Dartitis: Is it a Physical or Mental Issue

Dartitis is a complex condition that blurs the lines between physical and mental aspects. Players and experts often debate whether it’s primarily a physical or mental issue, but the truth likely lies in the synergy between the two.

On one hand, there are physical aspects to dartitis. It can manifest as a physical blockage, making it challenging for the player to execute a smooth throw. Some players report experiencing tension in their throwing arm, leading to an inability to release the dart effortlessly.

Conversely, dartitis is undeniably intertwined with mental factors. Anxiety, performance pressure, and self-doubt can exacerbate the condition. The mental struggle to overcome dartitis can be just as challenging as the physical aspect.


There are several things that players can do to prevent dartitis, including:

  • Use proper technique. It is important to learn the correct throwing technique and to practice regularly.
  • Take breaks. If you are playing darts for a longer time, take breaks to rest your arm.
  • Listen to your body. If you are feeling pain or discomfort, stop playing and rest.
  • Manage stress. Performance anxiety is a common trigger for dartitis, so it is important to find ways to manage stress. Exercise, relaxation techniques, and spending time with loved ones can all help to reduce stress levels.

If you are experiencing dartitis, it is important to seek professional help. A doctor or physical therapist can help you to identify the underlying cause of the condition and develop a treatment plan.

Coping Strategies for Dartitis Sufferers

For individuals affected by dartitis, finding effective coping strategies is paramount. Coping with dartitis requires a multi-faceted approach that addresses both the physical and mental aspects of the condition.

One key strategy is to work with sports psychologists who specialize in helping athletes overcome performance-related challenges. They can provide valuable tools to manage anxiety and enhance mental resilience.

On the physical front, players can explore alternative throwing techniques and engage in targeted exercises to overcome the physical blockages associated with dartitis. Regular practice, combined with a supportive network of fellow players and friends, can contribute to a player’s ability to cope with dartitis.

Tips for overcoming dartitis

If you have dartitis, there are several things you can do to try to overcome it:

  • Take a break from darts. Sometimes the best way to overcome dartitis is to take a break from the game for a while. This will give your arm time to rest and heal, and it will also give you a chance to mentally reset.
  • Focus on the basics. Once you start playing again, focus on the basics of throwing technique. Make sure that you are using the correct grip and release, and that you are aiming carefully.
  • Be patient. It may take some time to overcome dartitis. Don’t get discouraged if you don’t see results immediately. Just keep practicing and be patient.
  • Seek professional help. If you are struggling to overcome dartitis on your own, seek professional help from a doctor, physical therapist, or sports psychologist.


In conclusion, the problem of dartitis, known as a form of dystonia, has plagued many aspiring and even professional darts players. This condition, aptly referred to as “the yips of the darting world,” is a state of nervousness that prevents a player from releasing the dart at the right moment, leading to a loss of control, twitching, and tension that destroys concentration and spoils performance.

While the origins of dartitis can be as varied as the players themselves, from psychological pressure situations to muscle spasms and contractions, the struggle is a very real one. However, there is hope. With mental training, like that advocated by experts such as Patrick Chaplin and Tony Wood, players suffering from dartitis can take a step back, regain their ability to throw, and rediscover their love for the game. So, remember, it’s not just about throwing darts; it’s about conquering dartitis and getting back on the oche with confidence and skill.

Note: We are partner of amazon affiliates programme, Article may contain affiliates links We may earn from qualifying purchase at no additional cost to you.

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