Can darts really help your brain?
Whilst many people enjoy a social game of darts at the pub, is it just a recreational activity or
could playing regularly really help the brain and mind? Dr Steve Allder, Consultant Neurologist at Re:Cognition Health explains how playing darts could be a brain-boosting exercise:
The intricacy, concentration, and hand-eye coordination demanded by dart playing provide a
dynamic mental workout that fosters neuroconnectivity and elevates overall brain function.
When players set their sights on the bullseye, their brains engage in continuous activity,
computing distances, evaluating angles, and executing split-second decisions. This process
activates the prefrontal cortex, which oversees executive functions such as planning,
problem-solving and decision-making. The repetitive act of throwing darts hones motor skills
and reinforces neural pathways that govern muscle movements.
The heightened levels of focus and attention required during a dart game positively influence
the brain’s capacity to sift through information, leading to improved cognitive performance.
Beyond the cognitive exercise, the social aspect of dart playing introduces additional
advantages. Interacting with opponents and participating in friendly competition contributes
to enhanced social cognition, emotional regulation and stress reduction.
So, the next time you grasp those darts, recognise that you’re not solely aiming for the
bullseye but also nurturing your brain in a comprehensive and enjoyable manner.
Dr Allder was also featured in an article on Independent.co.uk talking about the brain-
boosting benefits in the wake of teen star Luke Littler’s performance at the World Darts
Championship. Read the full article: https://www.independent.co.uk/life-style/health-and-