Rules & Regulations for Darts

Updated July 19, 2017

Darts is a game that ranges from a recreational activity to a competitive sport. Rules and regulations are determined primarily by the World Darts Federation (WDF) and the British Darts Organization (BDO), including equipment, scoring and penalties.

Types of Dart Games

The most common type of game is '01, which refers to amount of points a particular game is played until, always ending in the numbers 01. Teams usually play in the higher point games. The most popular type of game played in tournaments is "501."

The Darts

Darts should never have a total length of greater than 1 foot and have a weight of greater than 50 g. Each dart must consist of a visible point, shaft and flight, which are the fins on the back of the dart to serve as a stabiliser.

The Dart Board

Dart boards are commonly made of natural rope fibre. The required size of a dart board is 18 inches across and raised to 5 feet, 8 inches above the floor. Players must throw the darts from behind the foul line, located 7 feet, 9 1/4 inches away from the board.


A standard dart board has 20 sections with different point values for each, ranging from one point to 20 points. If a player hits any part of a column not coloured red or green, the player is awarded the exact point value marked on that section of the board. If a player hits the small bands on the outside part of a column, they are awarded double the point value marked on that section. If a player hits the small bands on the inside part of a column, they are awarded triple the point value marked on that section. The outer ring in the centre of the board, known as the "bull," is worth 25 points, as the circle in the direct centre of the board, known as the "bulls eye," is worth 50 points.


In darts, any form of heckling or taunting is prohibited while a player is in the process of throwing. The main penalty that arises in games are foot fouls, where a player fails to remain behind the throwing line during his throw. Any such fault will result in a loss of that shot.

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About the Author

Alex Oppenheimer has been writing Sport and Recreation related articles since 2001. He has previously written for publications such as The Miami Herald,, (University of Miami Athletics), (Florida High School Sports) and The Metropolitan Golf Association (NY). He holds a degree in Sport Administration from the University of Miami (FL).