Trick Shot Cornhole Practice

Have you seen all those videos online where people are doing these elaborate throwing tricks, and they show you how long it takes before they get it, or how many tries they made before success? They’re popping up all over. It started out with Dude Perfect, at least for me. The group of guys that primarily did trick shots with basketballs. They got pretty famous on YouTube and did some of the night time interview shows I think. They ultimately got their own warehouse and a ton of things that most people would just classify as “toys” I guess, and they hang out and think of cool trick shots to do.

They’re using all sorts of stuff now, not just basketballs. They throw hats, pong balls, baseballs, archery, skateboarding, golf carts, golf balls, frisbees. Literally anything you can throw, or hit, and they’re finding super hard ways to get one thing to hit another thing, typically far away. They still post stuff on YouTube, Instagram, TikTok - all the social media sites - and you can see some really cool videos that they make. There seems to be this new generation of “sit and throw things until something cool happens” and I have to say, it’s super impressive, and I probably spend more time than I should watching people try to throw plastic cups into other plastic cups.

I don’t know what it is about that sort of thing, but I’m drawn to it, and a bunch of my buddies are too.

Now I don’t own a warehouse full of toys and games, nor do I have 1,000 pong balls to bounce off 15 pots and pans lined down my stairs to hopefully land a ball into a shot glass. But I DO have a set of cornhole boards, and I can use those pretty much any time I want.

I don’t always have other people to play an actual game of cornhole, so when I want to play and no one is around I’ve started to emulate these trick shot videos to some degree. I keep the setup pretty simple: it’s always the cornhole board and I always use the cornhole bags. When you’re playing cornhole you’re always the same distance away from the board you’re throwing at, and you’re always throwing at the front of it. I’ve started to change those aspects a bit.

Sometimes I’ll stand behind the board and throw from there, so the board is declined away from you and the hole is at the “top” of the board from where you’re throwing. You can’t land short on the board and slide the bag into the hole, and because of the downslope, your bags will slide off if you can’t stop the bag when it lands. Typically I start way closer to the board than you would in a game, but it adds a different feel to things to keep it fresh.

Standing off to the sides of the board is tough because you’ve got so little real estate to work with. Again, you can’t slide your bags anywhere really when throwing from the side so you’re really just going for air mails a lot (throwing the bag directly into the hole to score 3 points). It’s not a bad little drill really.

Occasionally I’ll throw from sitting down, whether that’s on the ground or in a chair, and try to dial in my throwing motion and accuracy when the rest of my body is totally stationary. You don’t necessarily think of it, but a little sway in your legs or in your core can really change your throw when you’re playing. If you’re sitting down it takes all that away, so you’re really focusing on your arm and your release.

Some of the most fun (or funny, although slightly more dangerous) is a blind throw. If you’ve got a smaller, travel size set this works well because I’ll do this one in the house most often. Put the board on the other side of the couch so you know where it is but you can’t see it. Now I’ll throw the bags where I believe the boards to be and see how I do. If you can find the sweet spot and keep your throws consistent, you should be able to blindly hit a lot of good shots without even seeing where the board sits. I’m not sure this actually helps you get better at cornhole, but it feels more like the cool trick shot videos I watch online.

Something to try on the next rainy day when you’re stuck inside, or you’re bored with no one else around or a full game of cornhole

Have fun!