The Manual - How to throw a 180

Though this won't be for everyone,  in today's invaluable post from the manual, 15-times world champion darts player Phil "The Power" Taylor teaches us how to throw a 180 like a pro.

1 Begin by sourcing the right set of darts for you. If you’re more 6ft, that’s probably about a 22g. If you’re about 5ft 10in, probably a 24g. I’m 5ft 8in and I’m a about a 26g. The shorter you are, the heavier you need. As for flights, grips and stems, just try everything out and trust your instincts.

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2 Everything starts from your feet. Some prefer left or right of the oche, but I recommend centre. And so, in terms of foot positioning, imagine a plumb-line running from the treble-twenty to the floor, then imagine the line’s extending at a perfect right angle towards your front foot. Same applies for anywhere you’re aiming on the board, by the way.

3 Unlike in snooker or golf, you have to keep your head absolutely still. With your eyes fixed on the target, bend your arm, keeping it absolutely straight, then aim, pull back, and fire from the elbow. Experiment to work out how much force you need to use for a straight-line throw, as if through the barrel of a gun, rather than an arc. I find walking into the shot, eyes still fixed on the target, helps too.

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4 Start with those basics, then let your own style come through gradually. After that, work on consistency. Study different sportsmen, as I have – the ones who stick to a still, non-jerking pattern are the ones who win tournament after tournament. Also focus on concentration – I normally get into a zone – a bubble in which I don’t even hear the crowd – while playing. Beyond that, there’s no big secret to it; it’s mainly about practice (25 years, or one or two hours a day in my case) and dedication.

Words by Nick Scott