Friday, May 17, 2013

The Key To Bowling Improvement

We need to become better bowling students. The problem is that we're trying to get our games to come together too quickly.

I can understand that we have to bowl in leagues during the week and we work during the days.

However, to really improve, we need to take a step back and start practicing in the correct way until we actually get all the separate pieces right, then put them all together.

I was told at age 15 that I should learn “timing” first - out on one, down on two, back on three, and through on four (4-step approach).

The problem was, I became very mechanical with this type of thought process and it didn't matter how good my “timing” was if my “release” was all out of whack.

So, I concentrated on my “release,” which really helped me to be more consistent, but I lacked “power,” because my “timing” got thrown off and I couldn’t get into a very good “leverage” position.

I suppose this is why I eventually started "muscling" the ball, forcing my body to be in the right position at the right time.

Now, I've gone to a Free Swing and suddenly, “timing” means a lot more, but so does my “release.”

So, I've now come to the conclusion that “timing” and “release” should have equal importance; however, trying to get both right at the same time may not be so easy.

I think Brian Voss has it right - get the “timing” correct first, but do so by breaking it up into segments.

Right now, we’re still trying to work on what he says ALL AT THE SAME TIME so, we’re finding that getting our games to a higher level difficult and confusing at times.

Why do we find it so hard to follow the instructions of the "Master" and do what he asks us to do?

I believe it's because of bad habits we’ve developed over time.

We have the tendency to want things to happen “overnight.“

We’ve become poor students when it comes to learning new and different things.

We need to keep in mind that there are no “quick fixes.”

Therefore, here’s how I think we should proceed (4-step approach, but for 5-steps, it’s the 2nd step, for 6-steps, the 3rd, and so forth):

Segment 1 - Get the first step and swing correct before anything else;

Segment 2 - Get the first TWO steps and swing correct;

Segment 3 - Get the Finish correct;

Segment 4 - Get the Power Step correct;

Segment 5 - Get them all together into one continuous and flowing approach.

Then, and only then, can we can work on releases and ball speeds, and whatever else we feel would improve our game.

If we attempt to fine tune our bowling without getting a firm, solid foundation of the basics, we’ll be setting new techniques on shaky ground and not really improving anything.

In between leagues, at home or on the lanes at practice, we need to get each step correct piece-by-piece.

I feel that “Segment 1,” above, seems to be the most critical and that‘s why Brian Voss begins his elite training classes that way.

If you get that one right, then the rest of the segments, should follow.

Practice, practice, practice - at home, at the office, or on the lanes; but, get the First Step and Swing in the right position so they become second nature instead of trying to get all the steps right each night in league.

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