Wednesday, February 14, 2018

The Most Important Thing In Bowling


What is the Most Important Thing for higher Scores?
Even with bowling centers that have easier house patterns which takes less effort to roll a strike, this tip affects all types of bowler's scores. Beginner to advanced, cranker, tweener or stroker, I can sum this up in one word, SPARES! Spare shooting is still the most important part of the game of bowling.

 It can cost a professional a match in tournaments or be the one thing that keeps you from that new target score. Doing a simple calculation, one missed spare is minus 11 pins. This is usually pretty close. As an example, if I were to have a clean 200 game, but with an open frame or a missed a spare, I would have about a 189. This does depend on your pin count (Note: This is just a ball park figure).

 Another way to look at it is I had a 200 game with 1 open frame, but I would have had about a 211 if I would have filled the open frame with a spare. To sum it up I know it sounds basic, but it is true, spare shooting is still the most important part in bowling.

The Life of A Bowling Ball

How Long A Bowling Ball Lasts 

How Long Your Bowling Ball Lasts 

How long does a bowling ball last? This is a question I have gotten a lot. I will mainly be talking about the newer reactive bowling balls. I will not go into too much detail about the plastic, rubber, or urethane balls. 

I also must note that this is my personal opinion and experience only. This question could go into some detail and I may address it more in later posts. A plastic ball could last for quite awhile, but you will get lots of chipping and cracking. 

These balls do not absorb much lane conditioner and have a semi-hard cover even though it is brittle. You could have one of these balls for many years or only a few months. Remember, these are not high performance bowling balls so scoring will suffer. 

Urethane bowling balls have some oil abortion and have a durable cover, but usually do not have much track flare. They do not score as well as a reactive ball. These balls could last you a couple years if cleaned and maintained properly. Some problems are there are not many companies that make these balls anymore and they do not score as high as reactive balls. A reactive ball scores higher normally, but the longevity of the ball is short so you will sacrifice performance and scoring. 

I have seen some reactive bowling balls only last 30 to 50 games, yet I have seen some work well for a few years. Now the lane center’s choice in conditioner seems to play a factor, but I have no scientific proof of this. 

Some conditioners seem to have properties that kill the ball faster. One factor is the oil absortion rate. A lot of these balls are made to soak up oil like a sponge. It only makes sense the faster the ball is designed to soak up this lane oil, the faster it will lose it's hooking action. 

My point is a highly absorbing bowling ball will not last as long as one that has a slower absorbing rate. These are a couple factors. The question was how long will my bowling ball last. With the new high performance balls, the one time a week bowler will probably have to get a new ball every year or two because most the time the ball only last an average of 100 to 200 games. 

If you bowl a 33 week season at 3 games a night that would be 99 games. Then add probably at least one practise game weekly and you would equal 132 games a season. If you bowl more than that let say 2 or 3 times a week, you are looking at 2 or 3 balls a year for top performance. Proper cleaning and maintaining your ball can help make it last longer. In brief, the more you bowl, the more new equipment you will need. 

Good Luck and Great Bowling.

Bowling Tips for the Beginning Bowler

The Basic Steps To Learn as a Beginning Bowler

1. Get a Good fitting bowling ball. In addition, beginners should only use a conventional grip bowling ball. Don't buy an expensive ball at this time, but get a name brand ball and not from a department store get one from a pro-shop, bowling center, or on online retailer.

 3. Learn spot, arrow or line bowling.

4. Learn spare shooting. This is very important spares especially as a beginner will really improve your bowling score.

Practice those 4 things over and over again, along with reading and asking questions. In Addition, if you can find a certified USBC bowling coach in your center that can help tremendously, a good place to look is in your centers Jr bowling program most programs have certified level 1 coaches and would be glad to show you the 4 step approach , line bowling, and spare shooting. 

Tuesday, February 6, 2018

The Different Hand Positions

Bowling Hand Positions - The Different Hand Positions In Bowling
Bowling Hand Positions
The Different Hand Positions in Bowling
How Changing Hand Positions Affects Bowling Ball Roll.
Bowling Hand Positions - There are many different hand positions in bowling. I am only going to start out with a few of the basic ones. Cupped, Straight, and Broken are the 3 basic vertical hand positions. The 3 basic horizontal wrist positions which are at 12 o'clock, 10:30, and 9 o'clock. Using different combinations of these changing hand positions in bowling will affect the ball roll. This affect causes the bowling ball to have earlier roll or later roll. It can also cause different angles to the pocket and cause the ball to hook or roll at different spots on the bowling lane. At times it can substitute for bowling ball speed problems. These basic wrist combinations, along with different finger positions in gripping the bowling ball may be all that’s needed. Try them before changing bowling lane lines, or even changing bowling equipment, or bowling ball layouts.
1. The Cupped Release - The cupped release is when your wrist is curled so that your fingers and hand are angled upward in a 45 degree angle. This causes the bowling ball to roll sooner. It also gives you an earlier break point. (Note: most crankers or high revolution bowlers like this wrist position).
2. The Straight Release - The straight release is when your wrist is straight. There is no break upward or downward. This release is a starting position. It is a release that should be used most of the time. You should then adjust from this point. This is a medium wrist position. (Note: most straight bowlers or strokers like this wrist position).
3. The Broken Wrist Release - The broken wrist position, or release, is when your hand and fingers are angle down toward the ground; also your wrist is broken. This release position is used when you want to delay the break point or if you want to get the ball down lane before it hooks. It is also used to get through the heads. (Note: the heads are the first part of the bowling lane). It can also substitute for ball speed or for drier lane conditions. I have seen famous professionals like Norm Duke and Brian Voss use this release a lot.
4. The 12 o'clock Release - With the 12 o'clock, or 10 degree, release as you hold your ball your thumb comes straight up with no (or very little) side turn. Your hand and thumb will be at the 12 o'clock position as it is released. This release will give the bowling ball a lot of end over end roll. It causes the bowling ball to delay its break point. This release is used on dryer lanes and to help get the ball down the lane before it hooks. (Note: this is also called a 10 degree axis rotation).
5. The 10:30 Release - With the 10:30, or 45 degree, release as you hold your bowling ball your hand is turned horizontal and your thumb is pointed at 10:30 on a clock, or at a 45 degree angle. This release is the most common. It also should be used as a starting point. This release gives the bowling ball a slight inward turn toward the 7 pin. (Note: this is also called a 45 degree axis rotation).
6. The 9 o'clock Release - With the 9 o'clock, or 90 degree, release as you hold the bowling ball your hand is turned horizontally to the side facing 9 o'clock. This release causes the ball to have a lot of spin. It sometimes causes what we call a spinner. This means the bowling ball is spinning like a top. It also has very little ball to lane surface contact. This means the bowling ball will not have much hook or drive as it rolls down the bowling lane. When it hits the bowling pins it may hit dead with not much action. (Note: this is also called the 90 degree axis rotation).

Bowl-A-Roll Birthday Parties

The Four Step Approach

Monday, July 31, 2017

Center News

Fall League Schedule

Fall Leagues Now Forming

Company League, Neighborhood Leagues or Just a Group of Friends

Lots of groups are now forming their own bowling league-why not you? In the past we have provided many different league opportunities to you-but we forgot to ask what you wanted, shame on us! Here’s your chance to do it your way.
You form a league of your own with friends, family, co workers or members of an organization that you’re a member of. You decide the time of day, day of week, number of sessions that you want to bowl. Then tell us how often you want to bowl weekly, bi-weekly or once a month. We’ll just provide the lanes for you.
Finally you will have a league you can enjoy with all the benefits you want including a great social activity and a FUN time with friends. Because this is your league you tell us the rules and how much time you want to spend with us.
Leagues can be formed with as few as 8 bowlers (4 Teams of 2). An extra benefit of bowling in a league with only a couple bowlers on each team sessions can be limited to 90 minutes or less too – no longer do you need to mark the entire night/day off your schedule.

For more information please contact Bowl-A-Roll Lanes at 585-427-7250 or email us at  

Sunday, June 11, 2017

Bowling 3-6-9 Spare System

Bowling Tips: 3-6-9 Spare System

A very important key to improving your bowling scores is learning to convert spares effectively. If you are a beginning bowler or one who is averaging 130 or less currently and wish to improve your spare shooting capabilities, then learning the bowling 3-6-9 spare system will certain help. The bowling 3-6-9 spare system is one which has been around the game for literally decades of time and is extremely easy to learn and to implement.

First, it is vital to establish a initial strike alignment method and then base your spare adjustments off of your strike target line. In most bowling centers, the house lane condition allows bowlers to line up somewhere around the second arrow or tenth board from the edges of the lane (right side for right handed bowlers, left side for left handed bowlers). Also, bowlers will typically place their sliding bowling shoe on or near the center guide dot on the approach, which corresponds to the 20 (twenty) board or the center board.

Placing the instep of the sliding bowling shoe (left shoe for right handed bowlers) covering the 18 board with the instep of the shoe will position the outside of your bowling shoulder aligned with of the 10 board (2nd arrow). An initial alignment usually means targeting or spotting the 10 board, or very near that 10 board, (perhaps at the 8 or 9 board or even the 11 board depending how straight your ball travels or how much it hooks) at the targeting arrows about 15 feet beyond the foul line.

The bowling 3-6-9 spare system is based off of lateral adjustments either right or left of the initial strike alignment positioning with your feet on the approach. One simple factor must be remembered in properly aligning to spares:

For spares on the right side of the lane, move your feet left. For spares on the left side of the lane, move your feet right. Use your strike target for spares. It is that easy.

It helps to first learn and understand the bowling pin formations on the pin deck and how to identify the pins by their numbers. The key pin in any spare combination is the one nearest you.

The following are positioning adjustments on the approach for the key pin in formation and for using your strike target in the 3-6-9 spare system:

For the 2 pin, move right 3 boards

For the 4 pin, move right 6 boards

For the 7 pin, move right 9 boards

For the 3 pin, move left 3 boards

For the 6 pin, move left 6 boards

For the 10 pin, move left 9 boards

Here are a few tips for using this spare system successfully:

1. When adjusting your feet either left or right on the approach depending on the key pin left standing on the pin deck, point your toes of your bowling shoes very slightly toward the key pin of your spare. This will influence your hips and bowling shoulder slightly to face the pin squarely so releasing the bowling ball to your same strike target remains an easy task. During your approach, try and maintain your hips and shoulder facing the key pin or pins left standing.

2, If you are a right handed bowler (opposite for left handed bowlers) and you hook the ball modestly or perhaps quite even a bit, then we recommend for the 10 pin spare that you move to the far corner of the approach and use the the center arrow (or just to the right of the center arrow (4th arrow)) for the ten pin spare. Point the toes of your bowling shoes toward the ten pin but try to maintain a straight walking path to the foul line.

3. If your 3-6-9 adjustments are not enough of an angle change because of the lane oiling condition, then it is very acceptable to modify your system to a 4-8-12 system or perhaps even a 5-10-15 system so the adjustments change your delivery angle sufficiently to convert the spare so long as you use your same strike line target for each spare combination.

4. Using the same strike alignment target for spares is important because if you are aligned properly to the pocket, then the lane condition actually assists your ball motion similarly for spares as for strike deliveries.

5. Avoid drifting left or right with your steps from your adjusted starting position on the approach for any spare delivery. Try to walk a straight line based on your adjusted positioning of your bowling shoes on the approach for strike and spare deliveries alike.

6. Deliver your bowling ball the best you can at the same ball speed you use for strike deliveries. Avoid trying to roll the ball harder than you practice as you may not effectively control the ball path to the spare.

7. Use a polyester or plastic bowling ball for corner pin spares if the ball you choose for strike deliveries hooks too much and you are having difficulties holding the line to the spare. A spare ball can be very useful in converting the challenging corner pin spares.


Raising your bowling scores requires a dedication to improving your spare shooting abilities. Don't forget to make deposits in your spare bank! We hope this spare system helps.

Friday, June 2, 2017

Beginner Bowling Tips For Kids

Try these helpful beginner bowling tips for kids and enjoy more strikes and higher scores.

Choose a good pair of bowling shoes that fit

Bowling centers require everyone participating to use bowling shoes. They will rent bowling shoes to you, and it’s a good idea to make sure the shoes fit right because it’s a challenge to keep your balance when bowling. Approaches can be slippery because bowling shoes have leather soles and are designed to slide. Since the rental bowling shoes cost a few dollars every time you go bowling, you may want to buy a pair for a few dollars more. 

Select a bowling ball that fits

When I was a kid my first custom bowling ball was very special. I remember how it fit so good and allowed me to bowl with less effort. Even if you don’t have your own ball, try to find one at the bowling center that really fits. The right fit enhances a bowlers ability to control the direction and speed of the bowling shot. Consider a custom drilled beginner bowling ball.

Choose a bowling ball weighted “just right”

Choose a bowling ball not too heavy and not too light. A bowling ball too light won’t knock as many pins over as a heavier one. Kids that are smaller often struggle to throw a bowling ball that is too heavy and can easily lose control of their shot. A “just right” bowling ball weight gives a child the right combination of control and power into the pins.

Use bowling lane arrows when aiming

Bowling beginners often just look at the pins when throwing their shot. Bowling lanes have arrows about fifteen feet past the foul line that are much easier to hit. That is the reason the arrows are there, for aiming. Every fifth board there is an arrow and they are typically used for aiming and to make adjustments.

Use the bowling approach markers

The approach markers are helpful to the bowler because the allow you to begin your a bowling approach in precisely the same position. This combined with the lane arrows is an effective method for aiming and even a beginner can become consistent very rapidly. You can also adjust the length of your approach allowing you to finish near but not over the foul line.

Start far enough up on the bowling approach

Many beginners make the mistake of finishing too far behind the foul by several feet making the game harder in a couple of ways. The lane is already sixty feet long so adding a few feet obviously makes it harder. Also, the approach doesn’t have oil on it and the lane does, if you have any kind of hook on the bowling ball it will hook instantly when released onto the approach and not onto the lane itself.

Learn basic bowling timing

Bowling can be a difficult game. Learning to aim, timing the bowling approach, and adjusting to mistakes make it a big challenge. The ability to throw the bowling ball in the same direction every shot depends on consistent timing. Typical bowling timing uses a five step approach, although beginning kids may want to use a four step approach because it may be a little easier for them.

Use bowling bumpers for very young children

Very small children have difficulty keeping the ball on the lane until it hits the pins. Most bowling centers have some kind of bumper that bounces the ball back onto the lane and guarantees that the child will hit some pins. It is a much more exciting experience for the child.

Don’t go past the foul line

This is obviously a rule of bowling, but another reason for this bowling tip is safety. The bowling center puts oil on the lanes to protect them among other reasons. This oil is incredibly slippery and has caused many accidents for the unsuspecting beginner bowler.

Bowl when it’s your turn and not before

Wait for the lane on either side of your lane to be clear of bowlers. Another safety tip and also a general courtesy to bowlers on the lanes next to your bowling lane.

Consider joining a junior bowling league

Learning to bowl with others is one of the fastest ways to improve. The competitive spirit in a league can drive kids to learn from everyone around them and usually the bowling center will have a junior coach that can help out.