Darts have evolved from being a simple pastime played in pubs into a professional sport through which athletes can solidify their careers and make a living. However, a dress code is now required from players due to that rise in professionalism.
So what do darts players wear? They are allowed to wear anything that makes them comfortable. However, in the highest stages of the sport where sponsors fuel the success of a particular competition or league, darts players will need to wear uniforms with only certain logos being allowed to be visible. Moreover, players must wear a polo or collared shirt with regular pants and sneakers.
What Is the Dress Code?
In amateur competitions, the outfit will depend on the nature of the event. So, if a particular corporation is the event’s sponsor, uniforms to be worn are possibly provided by them. If not, the color patterns and designs might be based on the sponsor’s demands.
For example, suppose McDonald’s sponsors an amateur darts tournament. In that case, there is a high possibility that participants will wear collared shirts provided by the sponsor. In addition, the color patterns will be yellow, white, and red – the predominant colors of the McDonalds’ logo. Lastly, the only distinction is either the printed name or player number.
Moreover, without any regulation, you can wear basically anything you want. As long as you stay comfortable and won’t impede your game or anyone’s, any clothing is considered acceptable. Also, decency and the cultural mandate observed in the venue are to be considered.
For example, in school tournaments, the uniform will be decided by the event’s governing body. Some schools have uniforms that represent one’s Alma Matter colors and designs. As mentioned, the most common upper outfit for darts players is a polo or collared shirt.
In contrast, when you are in the professional stage, the rules will be different. This is because professional darts organizations set specific standards that various tournaments will have to follow. However, this doesn’t mean the player’s personality will be undermined.
In fact, over the decades, you can see a progression of the player uniform designs. Pro players from previous generations wore 2 to 3 types of colors with fewer printing patterns.
In contrast, nowadays, pro players are wearing Hawaiian prints or designs with pop-culture references. Therefore, as long as the tournament requirements are followed, flamboyance is pretty much allowed.
Under the guidelines of PDC, or Professional Darts Corporation, the shirts of the darts players have specific locations for numbers and patches of the sponsors. Overall, the permissible number of patches allowed on the front side of the shirt is only 4.
Two logos, which PDC mandates, have to be also worn by a participating pro player. Here are the locations for right-hand users wherein the patches have to be attached on the shirt, according to priority:
- PDC Required Logos: upper right chest; right sleeve
- Personal Logos: lower right chest; upper left chest; lower left chest; left sleeve
For left-handed players, the logos situated on the left sleeve and the upper right chest are exchanged. In addition, you are welcome to integrate chest pockets into the design to help you hold the darts used while playing in a game.
The pants situation has more leeway compared to the collared or polo shirts. In general, black trousers are preferable. However, you can wear any comfortable pants, as long as they aren’t the type of clothing banned by the organization.
Moreover, various cultural factors are also considered, such as kilts for Scottish players or full-length robes for Arabian players.
Players must always wear shoes during competitions, even though there is no running or jumping involved in the sport. Moreover, if you have a personal sponsor and asked you to wear the brand new sneakers you brought, you are welcome to do so.
How Sponsorship Affects Clothing?
The primary reason sponsors wanted their logos to be imprinted on shirts is for long-term exposure.
As a result, the PDC allotted specific locations for those imprints or patches to have uniformity among participants and optimize the camera angles for TV exposure.
Regulations For General Advertising
In addition, the following regulations are usually followed for TV and online streaming events.
- A player may choose not to wear any gaming or commercial company logo, even if the primary sponsor is the said gaming or commercial company. The event’s title can be sufficient enough.
- If there are at least two players who have very similar shirt designs, either one or both of them have to change shirts. That is why striking designs are allowed since plain colors, or solid color schemes may appear generic.
- All players are requested to bring at least two shirts of different designs. When two players are asked to change, the usual arrangement is that the lower-ranked player will have to change in the early morning of the first day of the event.
- If the colors of the shirts of at least two players seem so similar, then the Tournament Director will have to step in and make a decision. This decision will be based on his perception of the shirt’s colors, patterns, trimmings, etc.
- A plain white shirt is generally discouraged from being used as a player’s uniform. If the white shirts have been designed, they must be noticeable enough to be distinct from other printed white shirts.
Regulations for Logo Imprints
- Upon taking the stage, your uniform must not have any prints or logos from the makers. For example, if the shirt supplier is from Nike, Nike’s logo or mark must not be visible. If such a situation is not possible, the maker’s logo must be covered up with a fabric or a patch from a sponsor. If none of those methods are applicable, the player cannot proceed.
- The standard dimensions of the logo are the following: 2.45 inches x 2.45 inches; 4.55 inches x 1.33 inches; or 3 inches x 2 inches. The total area of a logo must not go beyond 6 square inches, including the background pattern of the logo.
- Sponsors’ logos are not allowed to be printed on the back of the shirt or the collar.
- As much as possible, a player has to choose shirts that won’t put them into trouble of covering up due to being in a situation against the shirt regulations. Each professional player will be liable for such neglect.
- Slogans from sponsors and even personal promotions are prohibited. However, sub-details of the logo are allowed.
- Regarding personal logos set by the player or by their team, there is really no prohibition. Individuality is pretty much embraced, as long as it doesn’t impede the other player’s capability or invite unwanted attention or criticism. The player’s initials are allowed to be imprinted.
What Clothes Are Not Allowed?
Even though the uniforms for professional darts players are stated clearly, there can always be some misunderstandings or misinterpretations. With that said, here is a list of what a professional darts player is not allowed to wear during any professional tournaments or events.
Players aren’t allowed to wear jeans.
Any trousers or skirts made from denim, corduroy, or any material that will appear similar to jeans are not allowed.
Players aren’t allowed to wear practice attires.
Training shoes are not allowed unless the tournament organizers recognize a medical clearance. Tracksuits are also not allowed since they don’t generally define professionalism.
Players aren’t allowed to wear headgear.
Caps, visors, sunglasses, or any headgear are prohibited. However, cultural backgrounds are recognized and followed, so headgear with cultural significance is considered okay.
Moreover, headgears due to medical requirements are also permissible. However, they need to be approved by the tournament organizers via a written application.
Players aren’t allowed to wear anything over their approved attires.
Coats, jackets, capes, and anything worn over the prescribed or approved attire is not allowed when participating in the event. Moreover, anything worn underneath aside from the undergarments, such as elbow pads or compression sleeves, must be subjected to inspection and approval.
Players aren’t allowed to wear non-enclosed footwear.
Sandals and slippers are prohibited due to safety reasons. More striking footwear is allowed as long as it does not stray away from professionalism.
Players aren’t allowed to have imprints that promote negative connotations.
Having a logo of the Nazi party or any known non-ethical organization as part of your uniform is not allowed. Moreover, icons, symbols, and even texts that promote sexual nature, social discrimination, civil unrest, or scandalous motives are also prohibited.
Players aren’t allowed to wear shirts, pants, or footwear that aren’t approved.
If any piece of clothing, aside from the undergarments, is not allowed in the tournament, it must not be worn at all costs.
Therefore, there is a need to gain the tournament organizers’ approval on all clothing worn or prepared as a backup. This is because refusal to comply will result in dire consequences.
Generally, a darts player has to wear a collared shirt with approved imprints or patches and trousers that don’t resemble jeans. In addition, wearing closed footwear is also a must.
Nevertheless, cultural factors are extensively considered. Moreover, adding a touch of the player’s personal style to the outfit is also welcome as long as they follow the given guidelines.