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How To Maintain Bowling Arm Swing Direction

The key components of an effective bowling arm swing are speed control and accuracy to your target. Tempo and direction have always been keys of successful arm swings so let's begin by learning how to maintain bowling arm swing direction.

By moving the ball held in front of your bowling shoulder in your stance position, regardless if you are holding the ball knee high, waist high, or shoulder level, outward and downward toward your target where you site on the lane, you will set the pace and the direction of your swing into motion. Try to sequence the beginning movement of the ball with the first step of a four step approach or slightly before the first step. Once the ball is in motion toward your target, seek a free, smooth, and uncontrolled back swing along your target path allowing the ball to reach shoulder level or higher directly behind your shoulder at the completion of the back swing.

If you are a right handed bowler, here is a quick method of determining how to maintain bowling arm swing direction. Stand upright with your feet together and arms hanging loosely by your sides. Raise your right arm upward with the palm of your hand facing the sky until your the bottom of your elbow is at least shoulder height. Your bowling arm and upper body create a 90 degree right angle relationship. Move your bowling arm slightly away from the center of your body an additional 5 or ten degrees and keep your arm extended fully with the palm of your hand facing the sky. Your bowling finders should be directly in front of the outside edge of your bowling shoulder.

Your bowling arm should now be extended fully at shoulder level or higher and the angle created between your shoulders and your arm is about 100 degrees. If you visualize your shoulders squared to the bowling pin deck and parallel to the foul line, then your arm will be pointed in the proper direction to release your ball toward your target down the lane allowing for necessary room so the ball can hook to the pocket on the back end of the lane.

If you use this relationship of arm and shoulders for playing any and all angles on the lanes, then you will develop a consistent arm swing direction. Notice how you can rotate your shoulders open slightly and still maintain the same approximate 100 degree angle relationship with your bowling arm swinging through your approach, delivery, and follow through motions. This shoulder alignment, which is slightly open in reference to the foul line, works nicely when you have to play an inside angle on the lane allowing for either dry land conditions, a large hooking motion of your bowling ball, or both.

When you need to start the ball on a straight path up the boards of the lane on very oily conditions before it begins to hook to the pocket, then close your shoulders back to a square position parallel to the foul line but still maintain the 100 degree angle between your shoulders and your arm swing path. Maintain the same swing path for all deliveries.

Regardless if you are rolling at a cross lane spare, playing a deep inside angle to the break point and then to the pocket, if you are playing an outside angle heading the delivery of your ball straight up the lane, or if you need to close your shoulders beyond parallel to roll your ball at pins in the opposite corner of the lane, merely open or close your shoulders relative to the foul line so your swing direction can maintain the same directional consistency no matter where you are sighting on the lane.

It helps to preset your hips and shoulder alignment in your stance position so the front of your bowling shoulder will face directly at your target and your arm swing will ultimately swing toward your down lane target. Try and maintain the same shoulder position throughout your walk to the foul line by avoiding excessive shoulder rotation during your swing so when you arrive at your final sliding step and begin to release your bowling ball, your forward swing and follow through motions will be target oriented.

Visualize aiming a pistol on a shooting range directly at your target and maintaining a right angle (or about 90 degrees of angle between your shoulders and your arm) with your shoulders and the arm holding the pistol. If you then wish to fire the weapon at a different target to the right of the first target, simply maintain the same relationship angle between your shoulders and your arm holding the pistol and re-position your shoulders accordingly. Use this same method of alignment angle between your shoulders and your arm swing on the lanes so you can develop a consistent swing direction from delivery to delivery and at any target on the lane.

Another tip about the forward swing is that the forward swing should move downward and under your shoulder arriving next to the ankle of your slide foot with about one inch of space or less to avoid hitting the ankle as your hand begins the releasing process. Ideally, the front part of your bowling arm (where blood is normally drawn in a laboratory) should be facing the pins at the moment of release.

The forward-swing continuing motion after the release, known as the follow-through, should also maintain a target orientation. The swing should follow-through high enough as to allow the elbow of your bowling arm to attain shoulder height or higher each and every delivery. These tips will help you produce an effective swing direction toward your target. With some practice, you can improve your swing direction and play multiple angles on the lane which is the secret to higher scores.

If you have any questions about swing direction techniques, we recommend you seek consultation with a certified bowling coach or with a top amateur/professional player in your area to work at improving the effectiveness of your arm swing. While you are here at our site, please take some time to examine our extensive list of bowling products and kindly be reminded that our discounted prices are available with free shipping on every item at When you are ready to make your purchase, simply follow our easy online order instructions because our store is open 24 hours per day, each and every day. Thank you for visiting!

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