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How To Hold A Bowling Ball


Learning how to hold a bowling ball is key in making consistent deliveries and especially important for new or beginner bowlers. First, the manner by which a bowler inserts his or her fingers and thumb into the bowling ball and supports the weight of the ball while taking the stance position on the approach of the lane is commonly referred to as the "grip."

A good grip enables you to properly release the ball and thereby make a good delivery. Finding out how to hold a bowling ball correctly begins with supporting the weight of the ball in your non-bowling hand. Next, softly place your bowling fingers, normally the middle two fingers of your bowling hand, and your thumb into the holes drilled into the bowling ball ball. Make sure your fingers are inserted as far as the holes permit and the same for your thumb.

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A commonly accepted procedure is for the fingers to be inserted into the ball before the thumb. Care should be taken to fit your fingers into the holes of the ball carefully and the same manner each time you are getting ready to bowl. The same is true for your thumb being placed into the hole of the ball after the fingers are properly inserted.

Your bowling fingers should be inserted down to the second knuckle joint for a conventionally drilled bowling ball so the weight of the ball can be supported by the pads of your fingers leading to the second knuckle joint. For a fingertip grip, your fingers should be inserted down to the first knuckle joint and the weight of the ball will be supported by the pads of your fingers from the tip of your fingers to the first joint.

The thumb must be inserted into the thumb hole of the ball down to the second knuckle joint as to allow the ball surface to rest on the palm of your hand and to the full extension of your thumb. If a ball is drilled properly to custom fit your hand, there should be little or no separation of the palm of your hand from the surface of the bowling ball, regardless of a conventional drilling or a fingertip drilling.

When your hand is placed properly into the holes of the bowling ball, there needs to be slightly more gripping pressure on the finger pads of your hand than on your thumb pad. As new bowlers develop into accomplished players and learn to release the ball effectively, the thumb must be released a split second before the fingers so the fingers may impart the rotational action which causes the bowling ball to travel down the lane with an effective rolling and hooking motion. Gripping too tightly, particularly with the thumb, will slow the action of your hand at the moment of release. It helps to learn to grip the ball properly from the onset so you can develop your skill as a player quickly.

bowlingball.com recommends that every beginner purchase their very own new ball and have it professionally fitted to the specifications of your hand. Improperly fitting bowling balls can potentially cause injury to your bowling hand and can adversely affect a good release and delivery of the bowling ball.

Since everyone has a unique hand with unique finger and thumb sizes, it only makes sense to own a bowling ball fitted to your hand so each time you bowl, you get the same fit and can, therefore, learn to develop an effective release of the ball. For this reason, the bowling balls found for public use at your local bowling center, known as "House Balls", are not drilled for anyone specifically but rather drilled randomly with the holes sized according to the weight of the ball instead of to the hand of a given bowler. Why not get the most enjoyment from your time on the lanes by owning your own equipment? Hope these tips help?

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