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Standing at the Oche

How you stand at the oche (the throw line) will help determine how well you throw your darts toward the dartboard. The correct stance will help you to throw straighter, depending on your technique. Let’s clarify this a little.

For ease of explaining this in writing, i.e. without pictures or video, I’ll presume the dartist is a right-handed player, so switch it around for you lefties.

There are four options or ways to stand at the oche when throwing your darts. One I would highly advise you not to use.

With both feet against the oche with toes pointing directly at the dartboard:

This stance is not recommended, although I do see some players use it with varying success. Why is this stance not recommended? By standing with both feet at the oche, your elbow on your throwing arm naturally points out, leaving your forearm on an angle making the release of the dart crooked. As you throw, the weight to propel the dart will make the top half of your body swivel, if you will. A great way to hit 5’s and 1’s in my opinion. It’s nearly impossible to site your dart or to get head directly behind the dart prior to the throw, whilst at the same time having a vertical forearm. You will also find it hard to lean forward as your centre of balance is directly up, thus you will have no forward momentum to your throw. This will leave you prone to rock back and forward or rock at the oche. Scotsman John Henderson can rock it albeit with a different stance, but the majority of dart throwers can not “rock at the oche”. Hence this stance will leave your throw jerky as it uses too much shoulder movement. Look, some can make this stance work for themselves, but just the fact that there are no professional’s that use this technique to stand at the oche speaks volumes on its own. I would not recommend this stance.

With one foot forward against the oche pointing directly at the dartboard:

This stance is widely used by the two-time World Champion Gary Anderson, Simon Whitlock and current World Champion Luke Humphries along with many others. This is also a stance used for people who are left eye dominant as a right handed thrower as the throwing arm comes directly in front of your eyeline. The issue that can be created from this stance is that the dart thrower will leave their elbow pointing slightly outwards thus leaving the throwing arm on an angle. Especially if the thrower does not twist the top half of their body to face the dartboard. The dartist may find they throw 5’s and 1’s on a more regular basis if the elbow is not tucked in. Whilst this stance works for many, a lot of dart players prefer the next darts stance.

With one foot forward against the oche pointing at a 45° angle to the dartboard:

With the forward foot pointing on an angle (towards 10 or 11 o’clock), this will naturally allow the dart throwers elbow to tuck in much more and allow the thrower’s arm to be naturally aligned to the dartboard. The forearm will then be straight allowing for the throw to occur in an upright pendulum manner if you will and allow for a much straighter throw. This is a stance that is used by the current World number four ranked player, Nathan Aspinall to very good effect. The thrower still needs to twist the upper half of their body slightly so that they are facing toward the dartboard. Your weight remains mostly on the front foot, with a slight lean towards the board and the rear foot back, touching the floor to provide balance throughout the throw.

With one foot forward against the oche pointing at a 90° angle to the dartboard:

So, if the dartboard is 12 o’clock, your toes are pointing to 1/4 to 12 with the right side of your right foot flat along the oche line. The front leg’s knee should be virtually locked to ensure a stable platform. This is a stance commonly used by MVG (Michael van Gerwen), Rob Cross and even the GOAT Phil “The Power” Taylor. This stance allows your elbow to naturally tuck well in, so it is directly below your throwing hand leaving your forearm perfectly straight. This will make your throw much straighter than if you were using another stance. You will also notice it difficult to twist on release of the dart as you’re effectively throwing side on. Most of your weight (say 80%) is on the front foot and the front knee locked so you don’t bounce around with the rear foot once again behind, touching the ground to be used as a ballast and balance only. Your weight and momentum remains forward towards the dartboard. The top half of your body is twisted slightly so it faces at about 10 to 11 o’clock.


As you can tell by the three different recommended stances above, they are used by some of the best dart players to have ever thrown tungsten at a dartboard.

These are just variations on how to stand at the oche. To produce the most accurate darts throw however, the player will also need a stable head, proper weight distribution with most of the weight on the front foot with the front heel planted, movement of the throwing arm only and a solid follow through is also required. This all comes with plenty of practice and lots of trial and error to see what works best and what best suits your throw.

Straight Arrows everybody

Paul Webber

Owner – Bullseye Darts



Hi Paul,

Thanks for the tuition, this is where I've been going wrong with my stance.

Hopefully I can minimize the issues I've adapted since returning to the game I love.

I'll be giving this a go today.



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