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Let Your Bowling Hand Follow Your Ball Toward The Target

The former PBA Hall of Fame Champion and bowling legend, Earl Anthony, commented often to his Pro-Am partners at PBA Tour events to “let your bowling hand follow your ball toward your target.” Having personally heard Earl give this tip many, many times to amateur bowlers over a long span of years, it was apparent that this was Earl’s favorite tip.

Through research done by the staff and through my own years of bowling experience, the days during Earl’s career on the Tour found that most bowlers, professionals and amateurs alike, did not hook the ball a great deal, certainly in comparison to today’s standard.

Bowlers in the 1970’s were “stroker” type players who delivered the bowling ball with a small hook motion on a down-and-in line to the pocket.

Earl would give his tip to help bowlers improve their accuracy. Earl realized that bowlers would allow their bowling hands to follow-through away from their intended sighting target on the lane.

The results were either pulling the delivery inside a desired target path or missing outside the desired path because the bowling hand would not follow the ball in the same target path direction.

Even in today’s world of high technology bowling balls, those bowlers who are down-and-in direction players can use this timeless tip to help improve their bowling accuracy.

If you are a direction-type player, particularly those of you who find yourself pulling your ball inside your target, simply focus on keeping your bowling elbow directly behind the bowling hand throughout the forward swing and during the release of the ball.

This technique will prevent the elbow from rotating to the outside of the bowling hand before your release causing the dreaded “chicken-wing” delivery where the bowling hand follows through inside the sighting target and results in a shot pulled away from the intended target.

If your elbow stays behind your hand during the forward swing and delivery, then you merely need to continue following-through with your hand moving in the same direction along the intended swing path to the target on the lane.

As Earl would say, “let your bowling hand follow your ball toward your target.”

Keeping things simple during competition is usually the best way of performing to a high standard. So next time you hit the practice lanes, give the great Earl Anthony’s tip a try. You just might find your control and accuracy improving.

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