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Ask Bob (November 2015) - Do I Need To Move Or Am I Making Bad Shots?

bowlingball.com 11/12/2015

by Bob Korth - Stars & Strikes Newsmagazine

Q. I am having a problem in league deciding if I need to move or if I am making bad shots. In the first game I am hitting the pocket and striking. Later in that game I start going light and leaving the ten pin. Then all of a sudden I am going high and getting splits. Would you move or is it just bad bowling?

A. With your description of events I believe this is definitely a case of the lanes transitioning. When you start going light and leaving the ten, you are seeing oil carry down. You need to right just a board or so with your feet to get the ball to finish higher in the pocket. Then pay close attention as soon as you see the ball move high like leave a 4 pin, then consider a move left. Probably at least 2 or 3 boards with your feet and one to two boards left with your target. The reason is the heads are drying out and you need to find some fresh oil in the front part of the lane. One of the hardest parts of our modern game is staying ahead of lane transitions. So just watch you ball reaction and move first when the ball acts different, this way you only waste one shot if you are wrong. You can always move back where you were. Here is another piece of advice when you make the move do it with conviction. Know in your mind you are right. If you don't you will not throw the ball well and you won't know for sure if your move will work. Then you have to try it again and might be wasting more shots.
Q. I am 15 years old and I bowl for my high school team. I am getting my first ball of my own and my Question is what weight should I get? And should I get a thumb insert and finger grips?

A. For the first answer, go to your pro shop and show them the ball you are using and have them watch you bowl. They can make the determination on what weight you should go with. As for a thumb insert I don't think it is necessary right now. That being said many pro shops like to use them to insure a clean release. The different cores in the balls can sometimes be a little tacky and the thumb slug will eliminate this problem. This works especially well if you decide to have more than one ball. The feel will be more consistent. As for finger grips my advice is not right now. Finger grips are tacky and give you a little more turn or lift on the ball. You are still growing and developing and I believe they can be hard on growing tendons from the added stress. You can always have them added later after high your school days if you think they will help. I know there are many high school bowlers using finger grips and may not have problems, but I am of the opinion that it is better to be safe than sorry. Tendon problems are a nightmare for bowlers.

Q. I have noticed some bowlers in my league are putting a sock over the shoe on the slide foot of the bowling shoes. What is the reason for this?

A. You are seeing more and more bowlers use a sock on the slide foot since the advent of synthetic lanes and approaches. Synthetic approaches seem to be more difficult to slide on. Many of them are on the tacky side. This can be hard on bowlers to stay consistent when sliding. So the sock over the slide sole gives consistency to the approaches. For the most part all approaches you bowl on will seem the same. They do take some getting used to. They make the approach seem pretty slick but people I know that use them swear by them.

Article was posted with permission from Stars & Strikes, America's Bowling Newsmagazine. www.starsandstrikesbowling.com

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