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Fine Tune Your Bowling Game
Set-Up: Make sure you set your spine angle with perhaps a ten degree forward tilt and with your shoulders fairly level when positioning yourself on the appraoch. Avoid setting your bowling shoulder too low in comparison to your basic set-up. Dropping the shoulder too low in the set-up, even an inch too low, can cause a variation in your swing path. Maintain a normal amount of knee flex in your set-up and make certain your weight is distributed over your bowling shoes fairly evenly with perhaps a bit more weight on the foot you do not use to take your first step.
Footwork: Walk lightly on the approach to the foul line and avoid digging into the floor and lunging into your slide step. A smooth tempo with your footwork is an important key in making a consistent approach. Even if you are a player with relatively fast footwork, do not exceed your usual pace of walking to the foul line. It is generally best to make a smooth start with the first two steps of your approach and then not hurrying the final two steps.
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Balance: Keep your upper body torso from making unnecessary movement while walking to the foul line. If you are a power player and you hook the bowling ball a great deal, avoid excessive opening and closing of your bowling shoulder beyond your norm during the arm swing cycle. If you are a direction player who does not hook the ball a great deal, then try to keep the front portion of your bowling shoulder aligned with your target on the lane throughout your approach. Keep your head as motionless as possible while walking to the foul line and while you are releasing the bowling ball.
Swing: Work on a consistent timing sequence to initiate the swing. If you use a long push-away, make sure you trigger the movement early enough without retarding the arm swing movement by holding the ball in front of you when taking your steps. Instead, allow the bowling ball it to drop into the swing freely and smoothly with a continuous movement. If you use a short push motion or allow your ball to fall straight toward the floor when beginning the swing, try to avoid using too much arm tension forcing the ball to the top of the back swing. Arm tension is a major reason for ineffective releases. When your bowling hand reaches the top of your back swing, make an effort to allow it to drop into the forward swing smoothly and consistently without "grabbing" at the ball and increasing tension in your hand just prior to the critical moment of release.
Release: If you hook the ball, try to rotate the ball with your bowling fingers as your hand reaches the release zone by your bowling shoe on your sliding step. You may exit your thumb from the ball prior to your hand reaching the release zone but avoid rotating your hand until your bowling fingers arrive at the laces of your sliding shoe. Regulate the moment of release by keying your thumb to exit the ball at the same relative position each delivery. Focus on speed control. Consistent ball speed allows for the release to repeat effectively time after time. Often times, bowlers try to do much to the ball by trying to help the ball hook instead of relying on the physics of the game and the dynamics of the bowling ball coupled with proper alignment to do the job. Remember, release the ball at a consistent ball speed and avoid forcing an abrupt lifting action onto the ball.
Finish & Focus: Work on holding your form at the line after you release the ball and until your ball passes the targeting arrows. If only for a split second, holding your form and balance position after you release your ball. This process will ensure you are ending your approach in a good finishing position. In fact, if you can hold your form motionless until the ball contacts the pins, then your balance is extremely solid. Focus of your eyes on your target on the lane until the ball passes the target. Do not diminish the importance of focusing on your target with intensity and concentration throughout each delivery. Place full commitment to hitting your target. Expect a positive result by planning for the result in advance.
Consult with your personal certified coach/instructor or a local bowling professional if you are having problems tuning up your game. These tips can help you self-monitor your physical game between visits with your coach. Work on your strengths and you will sharpen your skills.
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