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Bowling Release Variables

Let’s begin with acknowledging that keeping things simple when competing under pressured bowling situations can lead you to achieving success.

If you are trying to determine how many release adjustments you can rely on under pressure, consider the following simple and basic wrist positions when delivering your bowling ball:

1. Flat Wrist Position
2. Reverse Tilt Wrist Position
3. Forward Tilt Wrist Position

These three basic wrist positions can change your effective bowling ball motion by varying the skid length and rev-rate with little difficulty in implementation.

Using three simple wrist positions will alter your bowling ball motion and can add versatility to your delivery style.

The flat wrist position is the simplest and most straightforward position of any, because the heel of your hand is in a straight line with your bowling arm and the back of your wrist remains level with the back your bowling arm.

The flat wrist position provides moderate power and medium rev-rate. This wrist position is the most common of all positions and is a versatile way to deliver the ball. Your thumb will exit the ball before your bowling fingers which allows your fingers to apply the intended rotation at the moment you release your bowling ball.

The flat wrist position is an excellent all-purpose release technique and one all players should master.

The reverse tilt position can be set with the heel of your hand in a straight line with your bowling arm and the palm of your hand facing upward, then simply tilt your wrist back so the back of your hand moves toward the back of your arm.

The reverse tilt wrist position is the weakest release of any because your bowling thumb exits the ball at the same time as your bowling fingers. This release technique provides a long skid length and generates a low rev-rate.

This wrist position helps when you are trying to deliver the ball in a straight line to convert corner pin spares, for example, or if you are bowling on very dry lanes and ball skid length control is vital to gaining a consistent ball reaction.

The forward tilt wrist position can be set by simply cocking your wrist forward with your bowling fingers moving toward your forearm.

The forward tilt wrist position provides a quick thumb exiting from your bowling ball. The weight of the ball falls onto your finger pads allowing you to apply crisp finger action rotating the ball, which revs-up your ball immediately as your wrist unhinges.

With the forward tilt wrist position, you can increase your ball revs to combat heavy oil conditions. This wrist position accommodates a sharp bowling ball hook motion and a strong angle of entry into the pocket.

Each of these three wrist positions can be used in varying the amount of finger rotation used to produce your desired amount of axis tilt. By rotating your bowling fingers only one inch of rotation with each position, you will produce a forward bowling ball rolling motion with low axis tilt.

If you rotate your fingers perhaps two or three inches of rotation, you can effectively create more side turn imparted onto the ball and gain a higher degree of axis tilt.

With some practice and experimentation, get to know the limits where you are effective by changing your wrist positions. It is advised that you tilt your wrist only slightly and not to the maximum in either direction if you choose either the forward or reverse tilt wrist positions.

A slight reverse tilt wrist position will increase skid length while a slightly forward tilted wrist will decrease ball skid and pick up a stronger rolling motion with increased revs.

The flat wrist position will provide something between the other positions and is the standard by which you can adjust from when testing the lane conditions.

Use of an adjustable wrist support device can help you control each of these wrist positions very efficiently. It is recommended that if your wrist is weak, use of a wrist device will help you prop your wrist angle in such a way as to accommodate the type of delivery technique you seek.

With these three simple and basic wrist positions and with varying the amount of finger rotation, you can change your bowling ball motion to match with the lane conditions.

If you have any questions regarding these wrist positions, we recommend consulting an experienced bowling instructor to help you dial in your release technique and use them to your advantage.