Most people have played darts in a garage, with a cheap, but heavily used, cork or magnetic board hanging in a back corner. Or maybe they've tossed a few games on a coin operated magnetic dart board at the neighborhood bar. But these casual games provide little preparation for the the very serious world of regulation league play. Anyone who is interested in joining a league or just improving their skills should be familiar with these commonly used terms.
Electronic Board - Looks a lot like the traditional pub game but with a couple twists. Players throw soft tipped projectiles while the score is automatically calculated after each toss. These boards have small plastic holes to catch projectiles instead of the traditional cork backing.
Point - It's the sharp, business end of a dart. In regulation tournament play, a metal or composite point is utilized. Players throwing at an electronic game use soft tipped projectiles.
Barrel - Connected directly to the point, this is the piece where the player places his fingers.
Shaft - This piece fastens directly to the the flight but doesn't impact trajectory.
Flight - Sometimes referred to as "feathers" these are the wings at the end of the missle. Different shaped flights can radically impact distance and speed.
Game of 01 - The standard version of darts played in most leagues. Players begin with with a score that ends in "01" and reduce their score with each shot. The first player, or team, that gets to zero is the winner.
Darts can be a fun pastime for adults. Many pubs and bars feature dart tournaments, or at least offer free play while hanging out with friends. Many people also have dart boards in their homes for fun when friends come over. The goal is to throw darts at a circular board to obtain a certain amount of points. The center circle is the bulls-eye and is the most coveted spot. The closer you get to the center, the more points you earn.
The darts themselves have a sharp steel tip, which is why safety precautions should be taken when playing this game. Toy makers also make safer versions of darts and boards for kids, comprised of soft tips made of foam or Velcro, for instance. Want to expand your reach? Hop online and play virtual competitions amongst strangers or friends. There are also electronic versions of darts which can automatically sense the tip and provide an electronic score readout, taking all the guesswork out of the game.
Retailers and wholesalers that sell dart boards and related equipment usually sell a wide range of varieties from bristle types to magnetic types. This product line can also include different color backboards, target scoreboards, convertible tip darts, and cabinets. They may also sell flights, point sharpeners, shafts, cases, and other accessories. Some providers specialize in one type of product, such as handcrafted wood darts and target equipment.
You can double check all the rules for the game of darts online or you can buy a book guide from an online bookstore. The library is also a good destination to pick up books on rules. Many pubs and bars have house rules posted as well. Watch how the professionals play on television or attend a regional tournament.