In this recurring feature, I answer questions from Bowling This Month readers. If you have questions, please leave them in the comment section below so I can address them in a future installment of Coach, I’ve Got a Question!
I’m an old-school cranker from the late plastic/early urethane days. My body can’t do what it used to do in terms of loading/unloading at the bottom of the swing—at least not consistently. Any tips on how to revamp my game so I can continue playing the sport I love with a lot less frustration?
This kind of change is as much about changing your perception of yourself as a bowler as it is about the physical changes that need to be made. So, while there are some physical adjustments that must be made, the harder part often has to do with lane play and how you see yourself on the lanes. For crankers who might rarely have rarely used straighter launch angles, it’s about more than adapting your delivery technique.
First, with regards to the release, it’s simply a fact that as your wrist loses its mobility, you can’t rotate around the ball with the same speed to impart as high an amount of revolutions. There’s not much we can do about this. There are two options:
- Work to slow down your ball speed to match the lower rev rate and continue to play the same parts of the lane.
- Adapt your game to play straighter and work on “seeing” the lane more this way.
Both of these physical changes are fairly straightforward, but they require a bit of commitment. Slowing down your ball speed might involve shortening your approach, lowering your backswing, or both. Adapting to playing straighter can be a bit harder as you work on shutting down your launch angles and playing more of the midlane than the back end. Both options will require some work, but either will prove easier than fighting father time ...
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