Tips For Senior Bowlers: Don't Be Afraid To Go Down In Bowling Ball Weight
Today we'd like to talk about bowling ball weight, specifically for senior bowlers. Most bowlers who would be considered senior bowlers at this time would have started before reactive bowling balls
and advanced cores. During that era it was very necessary to throw the heaviest ball possible. It was the only way to guarantee that you would get the most hitting power out of your bowling ball.
Well, times have changed. Bowling balls have very advanced cores and coverstocks to maximize the potential ball reaction, angle in to the pocket and leverage at the pins to promote pin carry. In other words, the ball does a lot of the work for you. You used to have to make the ball do the work. This is a huge advantage for senior bowlers now. The most important tip I can give a senior bowler is this...Don't be afraid to drop down in weight!
In Bowling Fundamentals, second edition
PWBA champion Michelle Mullen says, "More weight is not necessarily better! At one time, the cores of bowling balls were a lot weaker, and the hitting power of the balls did depend more on weight. Nowadays, cores have gotten so strong that in some cases they account for approximately half the weight of the ball!"
In any performance ball you can purchase, weights 14-16 will have the same core and will perform the same. Below 14 pounds, many will have the same core but many will have densities or core shape changed in order to make them light enough. The most popular weight on the PBA Tour now is 15 pounds. Before the year 2000, it was far and away 16 pounds. This tells a lot about new technology and finding the most comfortable weight for you.
The most important factor in determining the proper weight (other than rate of fatigue and medical issues) is the balance of speed and revolutions. You want your speed to match your rev rate. You don't want your speed to overpower your revs and you don't want your revs to overpower your speed. Many senior bowlers have slower ball speed and they hook the ball a lot. In fact, they often have trouble because the ball hooks too much most of the time. If this describes your game, what weight ball are you currently throwing? Dropping a pound or two in weight will help you increase ball speed and even out the speed to rev ratio.
It's difficult sometimes to go against what you've always known, but in this case it is worth seriously considering. It will allow you to bowl at a high level for many years to come!