Baseball pitchers have different types of pitches they can throw to batters. The batter, in turn, has different positions for holding the bat; as well as varying the way their shoulder faces depending on how far or which side of the field they want the ball to go. It is a continuing duel - one trying to strike out the batter, one trying to get a hit.
Golfers have to learn to vary their hand, shoulder, and swing positions in order to overcome the courses they are playing. Dog-leg right, dog-leg left, which direction the wind is blowing from, and the distance to the hole all play a factor in determining how the golfer will play the hole or course.
In fact, if you look at just about any competitive sport, the best players are the ones who can overcome the different conditions placed before them. They've learned how to choose the right equipment and make adjustments for any obstacle placed in their way. Indoor, outdoor, rain, shine, dirt, asphalt, clay, different grass, wind, no wind, oil, no oil, wood, rubber, synthetic, and on-and-on.
I'm sure you've all heard the announcers mention that a batter is choking up on the bat, a golfer is facing his club head in a certain angle, a tennis player is coming down on the ball with the racquet in order to put back spin on it, and the bowler held the ball with a "broken wrist" grip in order to keep it from hooking so much.
Some of the factors we deal with in bowling are: volume of oil on the lane, length of the oil down the lane, the pattern that is laid down, wood lanes, synthetic lanes, temperature inside the bowling center, and types of balls the other bowlers on the lanes are using. The list could continue for much longer, but, I'm sure you get the point.
With that in mind, here's some tips for the bowler who want to take their game to the next level and who want to bowl consistently regardless of where, or what condition, they bowl under.
This is true regardless of whether you traveling to different bowling centers to compete or, you're in the same bowling center on lanes 1 & 2 or 21 & 22.
This article will cover two position techniques - hand position and wrist position.
Hand Position at your point of release: (references are to the face of a clock, thumb is straight up.)
1) If your thumb is straight up in the 12 o' clock position ) zero degrees) and your fingers are positioned at the 6 o' clock position, your ball will roll with the least hook. Your ball track will be closer to the thumb and finger holes.
2) Practicing with your thumb in the 10 o' clock (15 degrees) and 11 o' clock (30 degrees) positions will round out your ability to develop the hook potential under varying conditions.
2) If your thumb is positioned in the 9 o' clock (45 degrees) position and your fingers are in the 3 o' clock position, your ball will roll with the maximum hook
Wrist position at your point of release: (there are basically three)
1) The "broken" or "weak" position is when you relax your hand so that your thumb is pointing down and your fingers are on top of the ball. This relaxed wrist position makes it difficult for you to put any leverage on the ball, thereby taking revolutions off the ball.
2) The firm wrist position is the more normal position for line (stroker) bowlers.
3) The "cupped" or "cocked" wrist is the most extreme position high revolutions and maximum hook potential.
By practicing with each of the hand and wrist positions, and, combinations of each of them, you should be able to find the position that will work best for you when you enter a strange bowling center.
If you only have one bowling ball and you have four hand positions AND three wrist positions, you could say that you have, effectively, 12 different reactions that are controlled by you.
Keep in mind, though, that there will be a fundamental style that you will be most comfortable with; however, knowing that you can use other adjustments will make you that much of a better bowler.
There are very few bowlers in the modern sport of bowling who can do well in traveling leagues or tournaments with only one bowling ball or one style of bowling.