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How To Maintain Good Bowling Balance
Keeping your upper body as still as possible when walking to the foul line and when you slide and deliver the bowling ball is as critical to effective shot-making as any other fundamental component of your game. This principle of retaining good form at the line and being well balanced is as important now as in the past will never change over time. Good shot-making means delivering repetitively effective deliveries and that skill is developed by learning the art of making one good shot at a time.
Here are ten physical game tips we suggest you build into a fixed part of your game. Try and work on these tips during practice sessions, all of which are intended to help you maintain good balance during your approach:
1. Set-Up - flex your knees and lean your upper body forward about 10 - 15 degrees forward tilt at the address position on the approach.
2. Knee Flex - maintain 1-3 inches of knee flex throughout each step of your approach. Knee flex will allow the big leg muscles to support your body weight during your approach and to generate power when releasing the bowling ball.
3. Body - avoid excessive movement of your upper body while you walk to the foul line.
4. Head - focus on keeping your head as motionless as possible during your entire approach and while releasing the bowling ball. A steady head while walking will produce good balance.
5. Sliding Leg - make sure your slide leg has sufficient knee flex to support the full weight of your body as you slide into the line.
6. Sliding Shoe - Keep your sliding bowling shoe aligned with the boards on the lane and sliding under the center of your body to provide good stability when releasing the ball.
7. Balance Leg - your balance-leg should sweep out of the way in the opposite direction of your bowling arm as you begin your slide and your balance-leg shoe should remain in contact with the floor to stabilize your upper body and counter the momentum built from the bowling ball swinging at a rapid rate on the opposite side of your body.
8. Shoulders - your shoulders should remain in a line directly over the knee cap of your sliding leg and not pressed forward ahead of your knee so the majority of your body weight is centered over your sliding leg and your upper body remains very stable as you release the ball and while the ball travels down the lane toward your target.
9. Focus - your eyes must remain fixed on your target and your head should remain as motionless as possible while releasing the ball and after the ball leaves your hand and travels to your target. Your chin should stay at shoulder level or above so you do not make a sudden body weight shift forward during your release.
10. Follow Through - wait for your swing and follow through motion to complete its movement and hold your form for a second or until your bowling ball reaches your target on the lane. Remain as motionless as possible as though you are posing for a photograph and you wish to display good form.
Good balance at the foul line is all set-up well before you slide into the line. If you maintain good upper body posture from the beginning of your approach and reduce any wasted motion during your approach, you will be able to arrive at the line, deliver your bowling ball, and hold your form until the ball reaches your target. If you can do this successfully one time, you can repeat these good deliveries over and over again.
A proven practice drill is to hold your form after releasing your ball and remain motionless until the ball reaches the pins. If you are able to hold your form ten consecutive deliveries (during your practice sessions) and not move away from your delivery position until the ball reaches the pins, you will most certainly have excellent balance and be well positioned to make good shots. Good balance leads to good bowling scores.
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