Thursday, March 14, 2013

Your Bowling BARS

Adjustments have to be made every time you bowl.

There are more options in this day of high-tech balls but you still have to learn adjust comfortably with these options.

It doesn't matter how much oil is placed on the lanes or the pattern that's laid down.

Here, then, are four common adjustments that you should practice in order to be able to make the change comfortably when it's necessary to do so.

These are your bowling ball, your angle, your release, and your ball speed. A good acronym for these adjustments would be BARS - ball, angle, release, and speed.

We could cover many more variables; but, my purpose is to pike your interest by providing the basics and let those of you that want to, dig into them deeper as your desire drives you.

Here's the “Choc-List” for the basic adjustments I refer to as, "BARS":

1) BALL - if you're serious about the sport of bowling and want to be a high average bowler, you'll need more than one bowling ball. At a minimum, one will be your bread-and-butter; one will go longer than the others; and another will have a softer surface. This makes a total of four when counting your spare ball. From a hooking perspective, they are zero, small, medium, and large. Keep in mind that high-tech bowling balls are so advanced that you should consult with your favorite pro shop for the differences in ball specifications and reactions.

2) ANGLE - if you get on the lanes and your ball hooks further left than normal, move left; if your ball tends to go right, move right. Nowadays, consider playing outside the 5-board (first arrow) or as deep inside as the 30-board because the different oil patterns also affect how the ball breaks to the pocket. Keep in mind, though, that more oil in this day-and-age does not necessarily mean that the ball will hook less.

3) RELEASE – variables include, but aren't limited to, cupping or relaxing your wrist, having an apparatus on your hand being behind the ball, being on the side of the ball, and throwing full-roller, semi-roller, or 3/4-roller.

4) SPEED - if the ball is not hooking enough, slow the ball down; if it is hooking too much, throw the ball faster. Some possible adjustments are to move forward on the approach and take shorter steps to slow down, move back and take longer steps to speed up; hold the ball lower when you set-up to slow down and hold the ball higher to increase the speed; and, of course, you can always get a heavier (unless you throw a 16-pounder) or lighter ball to vary your speed.

How does one get to be an “advanced” bowler? It all comes down to practice, practice, practice.

Don't just throw for strikes and scores when you're in a practice session. Train yourself on the aforementioned hints to see how your ball responds on the lanes.

Get better and bowl better!

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