Overcome the “snatch”

How to Overcome the Snatch

or How to Keep your Brain from Helping you Fail

From an article at the Darts Performance Center:

When you throw a dart you start a chain of events that begins in the head. This chain starts with the brain. The brain then sends a message to all the muscles you need to throw the dart that they need to be activated and help out with the throw. There is a of course a fraction of a second delay between the brain passing on the message and the activation of the muscles.

They go on to say that when your brain detects that something is wrong, it attempts to “correct” it, which causes your muscles to twitch and ultimately mess up yout throw.

I’ve had to work through this myself and found a combination of two techniques that helped me overcome the snatch. In particular, I’ve had to deal with the “3rd dart snatch”, but the second technique below should help with any kind of snatching problem.

Technique #1: The first one is the old advice to simply slow down.

“Oh, boring, Davey”, you say? I hear you, but here’s why this can help:

There are two things that happen after you throw your 3rd dart that doesn’t happen with the first two:

  1. moving to the board after the throw and
  2. not needing to bring your hand back to get another dart

After the last dart, your body starts firing off the small muscles that move the big ones in order to get you walking to the board. This can result in a slight forward movement as you throw the last dart.

Also, your hand does not need to grab another dart after the last one, which brings the temptation to leave your hand pointing to the board, or dropping straight down, as opposed to crossing your body as it does with darts one and two.

By slowing down just a little, you will help “separate” the motions of one dart and the next one.

Technique #2: Put your hand through the board

The next way to overcome the snatch falls under the visualization category, but it definitely will change your finishing motion. What you want to “see” is your hand trying to go through your target area, or, if you like, you can “feel” your fingers “touch” the board after your throw.

What this does is force your throwing motion to continue past the release of your dart so that, even if your brain starts to detect something wrong, you will overcome the snatch because your muscles are committed to continued action after releasing the dart, making it hard for those “tiny muscles” to affect your throw.

Put these two ideas together and you’re almost sure to overcome the snatch