Like our FB page

Like our website
Tweet @bowlingball
Follow @bowlingball
Use and distribution of this article is subject to our terms and conditions
whereby's information and copyright must be included.

Wear Your Bowling Thinking Cap

If you are a 170 average bowler or less and are making the same mistakes on the lanes over and over again in competition, then you need to wear your bowling thinking cap. Everyone makes mistakes with lane conditions or which bowling ball to use, but if you are committing the same misjudgements repeatedly, then you need to wear your bowling thinking cap when you feel the pressure in competition.

If you are making physical game mistakes, then our staff at suggests that you adhere to a few quick tips while bowling in pressure situations:

1. Think about making a smooth and slow start to your approach.
2. Focus on making one good bowling delivery at a time.
3. Use a consistent pace or tempo of footsteps and arm swing.
4. Hold your form at the foul line after releasing the bowling ball to ensure good balance.
5. Minimize muscle tension while you bowl.
6. Make your alignment decision before stepping onto the approach.

For example, when you see your bowling ball hook more than you anticipated and hit the head pin squarely after a good delivery, you need to move next time you roll for a strike on that given lane. Avoid thinking you will simply throw the ball better. That won’t work. Move! Some type of adjustment is needed.

In the example above, if your ball hits the nose, likely changing hand positions or bowling balls may not be the first adjustment to make.

Move your feet and your sighting target in the same direction and toward the oil in the center of the lane at least in a ratio of 5:3 with your feet moving 5 boards and your target 3 boards. This type of lateral adjustment creates a wider delivery angle down the lane while your ball picks up greater front end skid, thus delaying the ball reaction and finding the pocket again.

If you are a right handed bowler and the center of your bowling ball hits the nose squarely, then you need to get the ball to contact the pocket at the 17.5 board instead. By moving left 5:3 in this example, you make a large enough of an adjustment to get back into the pocket. Moving only one or two boards in not enough of an adjustment normally and likely will not get your ball to squarely contact the pocket.

If you are bowling on a heavy condition and your ball does not hit the pocket but rather misses the head pin right, then perhaps a 5:3 adjustment will work or perhaps a lesser adjustment, say 3:1 to the right will help you recover and hit the pocket your next delivery on that lane.

The point is to think and move. It is a proven fact that lower average players resist adjustments more so than highly skilled players.

Don’t freeze and do nothing delivering the ball over and over without making an adjustment for the changing oil conditions.

When you see your ball miss the pocket, get out of there and make a move to where you pick up oil increasing your ball skid or pick up traction on the higher friction portion of the lane, whichever the case may be.

Some highly skilled players might elect to deliver the ball much faster than a previous shot or they might choose instead to change hand positions and use less revs on the ball as opposed to making a lateral adjustment with their feet and sighting target. The best players make any adjustment or adjustments necessary to get the ball to strike. They attack the pocket.

Once any good player understands his or her bowling conditions, then the range of adjustments will narrow and it becomes an easier decision as to which adjustment will work best in competition.

When you consult an experienced bowling instructor or certified coach, they will tell you to trust your judgement and make adjustments when you see your ball reaction has failed to get your ball into the pocket. By the same reasoning, your coach will tell you to not make adjustments off poor deliveries.

Your job as a bowler is to know what it takes to make a good shot and then focus only on making a good shot one delivery at a time. If you do not get the desired result, then think about what you must do next to adjust for your next shot.

Think and act. Trust what you see.

Success comes from developing good physical game fundamentals and then applying them in competition while making the necessary adjustments as the conditions call for change.

Thank you for visiting