When Paul Gillings told me he would shortly open his Darts Coaching Centre in the New Forest at the South Coast of England, I immediately decided to include it in our next holiday in England.
We hadn't before visited the New Forest, a popular holiday region in England, which can be found at the Solent just across the Isle of Wight. The Solent is a famous sailing area while the New Forest is a region with lots of wood and heather, one of the largest connected wood areas in England of which around fifty percent are national park. Many years ago the New Forest was the hunting ground of the Royals and till today 90 percent belong to the British Crown. William the Conqueror once afforested the area. Later many parts were used as lumber for shipbuilding - only at the end of the 19. Century the demand lessened and the forest could recover. Today it's more the tourism which endangers the nature and which almost blasts the small towns in holiday season.
Here in the New Forest - more precisely in New Milton a small town right beside the sea, you can find the Coaching Centre and the Darts Performance Centre Shop. And here we finally were able to find out ourselves what really happens in a video analysis and which conclusions you can draw from it respectively how the results can help you on.
In a room on the first floor of the building the coaching centre is placed . Several dartboards are on the walls all with transportable oches. At one of the oches the video analysis devices are up. really Essential is a laptop with the adequate software and a special program to analyse the throw. Due to that the videos can be played back in extreme slow motion.
The tested players - in this case my husband - are filmed while throwing both from the side and frontal. It's important to film all three darts thrown in a shot. The complete throwing arm has to be visible during the action. When the video is taken by the darts Performance Centre analysts from the side the entire body is captured from head to feet. When the video is played back possible sources of problems like unnecessary movements, incomplete follow through, changes in the position and similar things become visible. All those can have a negative effect; they are variables which interfere with the accuracy of the throw especially when under pressure. To film from the side and frontal is essential to be able to recognize all kinds of flaws. In the case of my husband it was among others a change in the posture of his head.
The recordings are viewed together with the tested players and discussed. Possible sources of faults or weak spots in the throw are analysed. After that you are advised how to get rid of them. A lot of players, who have done an analysis return to find out with a repeat whether they managed to improve their throw.
As in many other sports a video analyses is a revealing tool - it is an interesting experience to see how you throw and to dissect your throw into its components. Usually you are not really aware what you do while throwing and most details will not show without the extreme slow motion. Based on the analysis one can work to get used to a technical flawless throwing technique what means to put your game on a sound and reliable basis which can cope with the pressure of a tournament.
So should you come to the New Forest I recommend you to visit the Coaching Centre. By now the Darts Performance Centre can be found mobile at some tournaments - not only with the shop but often with the video analysis as well - you should use the chance!