I am not responsible if you die following these steps, you won't, but in case you hit yourself in the head with a bowling ball, don't come to me.
I would also so like to thank mafteechr for input from a profesional, you will see quotes from him at the bottom of most pages.
Step 1: The Lanes
Lanes are generally made of synthetic materials and some older bowling alleys have wood lanes. The lane is 60 feet long from foul line to head pin, generally with oil from 35 to 45 feet, leaving 15 to 25 feet of dry portion for the ball to pick up friction and hook. The lane is also 41.5 inches wide with half inch boards across and arrows every 5 boards.
Step 2: Your Balls
If you have big fingers like me, you may only be able to use large house balls, 15-16lbs. The balls range between 6 and 16lbs usually, but you can custom order. The weight depends on the person, I've seen 7 foot guys with 8 pounders, and 5 foot guys with 15 pounders. I myself use a 15lb ball, great arm workout. I use that weight because I am used to it from house balls, and prefer it to lighter balls.
When you buy a ball, you can get any weight you want, and tell them what kind of gripe you want. Different grips make for different throws. They match the holes to your fingers, so it's much easier to grip.
More on bowling balls:
The coverstock (surface) is generally made of different materials such as polyester/plastic (such as house balls, these do not hook generally), urethane (small amount of hook), reactive resin (varying amounts of hook), and particle (most amount of hook). The difference is the ability for the coverstock to absorb oil, therefore allowing it to generate more friction through the oil.
Inside of the ball is the core and physics control this. Properties of a bowling ball and it's core are generally measured by the radius of gyration.
Aren't you glad I split up these steps?
Note: Don't leave your ball just anywhere. If you leave it in your car at night or outside, than it can crack. Imagine what that would do to your score.
duke harding says:
One of the best websites fro gaining bowling knowledge is:
I can be found on the site most days.
Bowling is a great sport. One that you can enjoy into your 80s or 90s, believe it or not.
Step 3: Your Shoes
Also, they are better quality, no more slipping on old shoe soles that have been used one decade to many.
Third, they will fit you better, you can get them just like normal shoes, best fit for you, more consistency.
Consistency is your best friend in bowling. Say it with me, con-sist-ency. SAY IT!
Top of the line bowling shoes ($90-$120) also allow you to use different soles and heels to vary the amount of your slide.
Step 4: Your Stance (Straight)
Step 5: Your Stance (Curve)
My main problem with curves is that it can be hard to pick up some spares, so you must be well rounded if you're going to use them.
Easiest curve for beginners that I've seen was developed by a teammate of mine. You hold it like a straight throw, minus the thumb, and rotate the ball 90 degrees toward you. Then just flip your hand upside down while throwing it like a straight throw.
The sweet spot is the "pocket", which for right-handers is the 1-3 (1-2 for lefties). A solid strike would follow through the middle and exit around the 8 pin.
If you begin to throw a curve, it's best not to forget your roots and use a polyester/plastic ball and throw straight at your spares.
Step 6: Your Throw (Straight)
Best to use the grip below. I won't tell you the whole process of throwing it, because it won't work the same for you, but the basics are:
1. Start with the ball in front of you.
2. Take a step, and bring the ball down.
3. Bring the ball back.
4. Bring it forward.
5. Throw the ball, you can either use the momentum from your movement to add more force to the ball or not. This is good because more force=more pins, but makes you less accurate and consistent, CONSISTENT.
The best and most consistent swing is the pendulum swing. Allow gravity to swing your arm down and around.
Also, an easy way to remember following through is to pretend you're slicking back your hair after releasing. Cheesy, but effective.
Note. Remember to follow through. When you've thrown, your arm should be parallel to your head, and you're elbow pointed downlane at eye level.
But remember, you can do it any way you want, this is what works for me.
Step 7: Your Throw (Curve)
The two easiest ways I know are as follows.
1. Hold your ball like normal, except keep your thumb out of the hole. Than if you're right handed, turn the ball 90 degrees to the left, opposite for lefties. Than play around with this a little to see how you throw it best, but to curve it, simply turn your hand backside up and let go, while throwing it forward. This hooks for the most part, but hooks at different places based on how you stand.
2. Hold your ball like normal with the thumb. Stay completely up right while throwing, and make sure your shoulders are even. Throw out like normal, but turn your hand backside up as you let go. To do this, you'll need to be on the right hand side of the lane, opposite for lefties once again. This ball hooks hard after going straight, so timing is key.
When throwing a curve, be sure to wipe you ball every couple of frames, the oil from the lanes accumulates on your ball, and can reduce the hook and screw up your shot.
pictures coming soon.
To properly throw a hook while using your thumb, you must have a custom drilled bowling ball with fingertip grips. The key is your thumb is released first on the downswing and the lift from the fingertips and the rotation of your hand will generate the hook you're looking for.
Through the armswing, try to keep your hand behind the ball at all time. At the downswing, just before releasing, you'll want to rotate your hand 90 degrees, with the finishing position of your hand like you are shaking someone's hand.
Step 8: Your Aim (Straight)
Step 9: Your Aim (Curve)
This is the most difficult concept of bowling to master. Each bowling alley will have different patterns of oil, so you have to adjust to different bowling alleys.
Additionally, as you bowl more during one session, your bowling ball will either push the oil farther down the lane (by picking up oil on the surface and then leaving it behind on the former dry portion) or simply absorb some oil off the lane. This will affect when and how much the ball will hook.
If this isn't difficult enough for you, some bowling alleys offer PBA Experience leagues, giving you the opportunity to bowl on the very difficult oil patterns the pros bowl on.
Step 10: You Missed!!! It's Okay.
The trick is to see the pins, most alleys will show you the setup of the leftover pins, albeit briefly. This is how you plan your throw. This can be harder than getting a strike. A common joke of mine when I miss a pin is to say, "That's way too hard, I think I'll just get a strikes from now on." Okay, I'll never win any joke contests, but it is true, spares can be hard to pick up.
You need to look at the pins, plan your throw, and then do it,the last step is the hardest part. Sometimes it will require a perfect hit to knock the pins just right. You need to know your ball, how it will react to the pins it hits, and where it needs to hit to get a spare. It's like playing chess, it's all about making the right moves.
Step 11: Scoring
If you get spare, you get 10+ your next throw. For instance, 7/ 8 on the screen means you get 26 points. 10+8+8. Aren't you glad you paid attention in math class, and if you didn't, the computer will do it for you.
Strikes add 10+ your next two throws. For instance, x 9/ on the screen means you get 30 points. 10+10+10. Three strikes in a row is called a turkey, it's the best you can do. The first strike is worth 30 points, 10+10+10. Now you really needed to pay attention in math class, too bad for you.
The famous 10th frame will give you three throws if you get a spare or strike. The extra throw is so it can determine how much that spare or strike is worth. 10x30=300, a perfect game.
P.S. Don't cross the foul line, the point where the lane gets slippery. If you do, it doesn't count the pins you hit, and you lose that throw.
Step 12: Win, Graciously (sorry If This Rambles)
Now that my rant is over, all I'm saying is, by nice. I've met guys who sat on the bench during the whole state tournament(5 hours) because their coach didn't play them, they took it in stride and even congratulated us when our team knocked them out of the tournament. Be the best and nicest bowler you can be, but WIN!