Improve Your Mental Game
First, we realize that to say the following is a quick review is an understatement. Many excellent books have been written about the mental game on various sports. Highly educated people have spent their lifetime studying this single aspect of sports competition. Therefore, we will attempt only to guide you in the proper direction. The journey of education is one that you must pursue.
We would like to give you a few tidbits of information that hopefully will aid your bowling game.
Allowing the muscle memory to perform during competition, muscles must have been properly trained. That is done through quality practices. It is important to remember that if you want the mental game to improve you cannot be continuously thinking about the physical game. Regardless of the stage you are in with your game, think of practice as study time and scoring as test time. Too many people try to program their muscle memory while they are bowling league. This will take a long time. Muscle memory can be programmed by actually performing the action or by visualizing the action. So if you don't have time to practice try visualizing your shots at night before going to bed. Picture yourself throwing 12 perfect strikes. Visualize yourself from all four sides. Your subconscious doesn't know the difference between visualizing and actually doing.
When preparing to bowl in competition it is wise to set yourself up with a routine. Teaching methods suggest to first visualize the actual shot you are about to make and then set up in your beginning stance. Then inhale deeply through the nose and exhale through the mouth. This is the go trigger. Try to displace yourself from throwing the ball or of thinking of striking. Just allow your muscle memory to respond to the situation. If properly trained, it should serve you well. Displace yourself from the bowling shot by thinking of something totally unrelated to bowling. Ex: Think of rolling the ball in to a garbage can or between two posts - maybe with red roses on them. Get your imagination working. If your muscle memory is trained you will not be able to force the shot