Darts is a fun social sport, the history of which can be traced back to the days of the longbow in medieval England. The enduring popularity of the sport can be attributed to its being a game that combines skill, talent, and a bit of luck. The upper classes of the times soon put their own stamp on the game. Henry VIII was well known for his immense love of the game, and was presented with a beautifully ornate set by Anne Boleyn.
The sport began as part of training in the martial art of archery. Historians infer, because it is not known for certain, that teachers of archery shortened some arrows and asked their students to throw them at the bottom of an empty wine barrel. The fact that the bottom of an empty wine barrel was used is a clue to how the game evolved into a pastime. It is believed that the soldiers took their shortened arrows on their visit to the local drinking establishment to exhibit their skill, while having fun there. Gradually, some inventive dart thrower introduced a cross section of a moderate-sized tree. The “board” had rings, and upon drying, further segmentation was provided by the cracks. Thus, from the cracked and dried cross section of a tree evolved the modern-day dart board.
The history of darts in the United States can be traced to the Pilgrims. These tough colonizers are believed to have played the game on board the Mayflower as it made its ocean crossing. Later, the game was played fervently in the United States as a favorite pastime.
It was around 1900 that the rules for darts became what they are today. The size of the board, distance for throwing, and even the size of the darts were standardized. Today, around the world, organized teams play for trophies and professional leagues. The prominent associations worldwide for dart games are World Darts Federation (WDF), British Darts Organization and Darts Federation of Australia.
A set of 18-gram brass darts costs around $10, whereas a set of tungsten darts is $140. Prices vary depending on the material the dart is made of, as well as any extras like moveable points or special paint jobs. Prices differ from catalog to catalog as well.
Be it at the bars, pubs, clubs or your own living room, darts are an excellent way of spending time with friends and family. Spending time at home will never be boring as long as you have a dartboard hanging in your room.
The history of the game of darts goes back a long time. Legend has it that soldiers during the Middle Ages used to throw spears at barrel bases or cut-up tree trunks to get over their boredom. This gradually gave shape to what we now know as dart games. The system of scoring, followed across the world, came into being during the early 18th century.
Dart games have become popular over the years as it is inexpensive to play, can be played indoors during bad weather, no dress codes are required, and can be played by anyone – male or female, young or old.
The basic requirements are a dartboard and darts. With the advancement of technology dartboards have also evolved through the times. The most common dartboard is the bristle board – either cork or sisal. Cork dartboards deteriorate quickly with continued used, as the darts leave holes in the boards and the cork crumbles. The fibrous nature of sisal, however, is able to overcome this drawback and has therefore gained popularity. Sisal does not crumble even after constant use. Electronic dartboards are also available, and are equipped with sensors allowing for automated scoring.
There are various types of darts. The main parts of a dart are the tip, barrel, shaft and flight. Tips are either steel or soft. Soft tips are preferred on electronic dartboards and cork dartboards and are also recommended for new players. Steel tips are for the more experienced dart players. Shafts also come in various types. Synthetic flights are the most common nowadays and can be combined with the shafts. The use of feathers as flights has decreased considerably nowadays.
Many dart accessories are available nowadays. Instead of simply hanging the dartboard on walls, dart cabinets can be used to add style and elegance to your dart game. Many players also attach add-a-grams to get the required weights on the darts. The perfect weight improves accuracy in shooting. Dart mats are useful for new players, as the bounce-off from the boards may cause considerable damage to the floor. It is also important to have a rulebook as there are many methods of keeping scores and the game can be played under different rules. Scoreboard is also a must if you are not using electronic dartboards.
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