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A Bowling Ball Drilling Layout

If you find yourself wondering what is a bowling ball drilling layout, you are likely rather new to the game or unfamiliar with pro shop terminology.

A drilling layout refers to where the pro shop professional places the locations of the gripping holes and/or a balance hole in relation to the bowling ball pin, positive axis point for a given bowler, and the mass bias location when mapping out a bowling ball prior to drilling the holes.

The specific drilling layout you choose will influence your ball motion by increasing or decreasing length potential (skid distance) and hook potential (amount of hook in the mid-lane and angle of entry on the back end) based on your delivery technique and the ball construction.

The entire purpose of specific drilling layouts is to match your ball with your delivery style with lane conditions so your ultimate ball reaction is controllable and helps you increase your ability to hit the pocket with consistency.

There are several drilling layout options for any ball you choose. The important thing to remember is that when you invest in a quality bowling ball, you must take into consideration how the ball is constructed, its surface texture, and which drilling layout will combine to yield the ball reaction you seek.

Consult your favorite pro shop professional and discuss these layouts if you are ready to drill a new bowling ball. The pro shop pro will find your PAP, evaluate your ball speed and axis of rotation, and then make the decision how to map out a drilling layout to give you the best chance at success.


Avoid the expectation that once you select a drilling layout that your bowling ball will perfectly react as you visualize.

Many factors go into getting a good ball reaction. In addition to the core design, surface friction of a given ball, you must learn to match the layout and your delivery technique to the lane conditions and then line-up to the pocket properly.

Becoming a good player requires many talents. If you become confused or unsure about a drilling layout next time you wish to drill a new ball, consult and rely on the judgement of your pro shop professional and your coach to get useful feedback.

The pro shop is the first place to stop when wishing to gain more knowledge about drilling layouts.