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Why Won’t My Ball HOOK? – Part Two

Click Here for Part One
Hello again!

In the first part of 'Why won't my ball HOOK?' we talked about the importance of having the correct ball in your hand in order to achieve the hook you're after. Having the correct ball in your hand is important, but having a ball that FITS your hand is even more important! So the next step is:

Having a ball that fits YOUR hand!

If you ask any good bowler they will tell you that finding the perfect fit is an ongoing process. While it is true that it takes time to fine tune your grip, having a good fit for your first ball is imperative, and will make those adjustments that much easier. You can check out's Pro Shop Locator to find a driller near you. I'll give you some basics that will ensure that your ball fits YOUR hand

There are several types of grips, but if you're wanting to hook the ball the only one you want to go with is a fingertip grip. This is where your middle and ring fingers are inserted up to the crease at the first joint. Hence the term, fingertip. The reason this is the best grip is because by just having the tips of your fingers in the ball, it is easier to create lift, which is the way rotations and hook is created (We'll talk more about that in Part Three :) ). Most people trying out a fingertip grip for the first time will use finger inserts such as Quad Finger Inserts. Inserts are a lot softer than the ball which makes it easier on your fingers. Also, if you use the power lift side of the grips, they can also help you get a little more lift on the ball (which is always great for a new bowler).

The 2nd part of a fingertip grip (and any good fit for that matter) is having your thumb ALL THE WAY IN THE BALL. Let me repeat, ALL THE WAY IN THE BALL! I can't stress how important this is to having the right fit. Bowling is a sport that is built on consistency. You want a consistent approach, backswing, follow-through and balance - among other things. But the most important is having a consistent release, I mean the only way to knock the pins down is by throwing the ball, right? :) Well having your thumb ALL the way in the ball is the only way to have consistency with your thumb. If you only put part of your thumb in the ball, what's to say you won't put it in more or less the next shot? Inserting your thumb more or less from one shot to the next will make you throw the ball differently each time. And inconsistency is a very BAD thing. We need to focus on the inconsistencies of the lane conditions, not our grip!

Let me make a few things clear:

If this is your first bowling ball fit well for YOUR hand, it WILL feel weird at first! If it doesn't, then it probably doesn't fit right.

You're probably used to using a house ball, or your grandpa's Johnny Petraglia LT48 Gold and think that's how a ball is supposed to feel.

This is always the hardest part of having a ball fit for your hand for a new bowler. The thumb most likely will feel tight. You'll ask to have your thumb hole opened up many times. However, if your pro shop guy is good, he will work with you on how to release the ball right so you won't have to make the thumbhole so big, and in the long run you'll be glad you didn't. When you're averaging 227 in a few years you'll have that first good fit to thank!
-Dustin Seymour

Click Here for Part Three

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