Determining Your IBSSN (International Bowling Skill Score Number)

A way to compare bowlers worldwide?

Determining Your IBSSN (International Bowling Skill Score Number)

In this article, I share with readers a newly conceived International Bowling Skill Score Number (IBSSN). Readers will have the opportunity to evaluate themselves with a skill-based bowling assessment outlined in this article. The IBSSN evaluation will provide readers with a specific method to determine their areas of strength and weakness as well as allow the international bowling community a systematic method to compare any two bowlers in the world with an International Bowling Skill Score Number.

I first conceived of such a rating system nearly five years ago. In 2003, I published an article in another bowling magazine outlining these initial ideas and asking readers the simple question, “How good are you?” In this article, I proposed the creation of a bowler rating system to enable bowlers and coaches to complete a more accurate evaluation of bowler’s skill level, as well as enable comparisons between bowlers. In my opinion, a bowler rating system would offer the international bowling community a more accurate comparison of individual skill. I argued then and I argue now, averages in isolation are not a good indication of ability or a vehicle to offer an adequate comparison of bowlers.

The genesis for a revision of the bowler rating system emerges from a recent visit to The International Tennis Federation (ITF) website to see a relatively new initiative, the International Tennis Number concept. Specifically, the ITF developed the ITN in 2004 to assess individual players around the world and assign each with a unique number based on their current skill set. This idea was similar to with what I had envisioned in 2003. The International Tennis Number is derived from an on-court assessment conducted by a trained assessor that measures hitting depth, volleying, accuracy, serve, and mobility. Each of these assessed skills is viewed as critical for a player to succeed at the elite level. Most importantly, this is a way for a tennis coach or player to ...



Joe Slowinski

About Joe Slowinski

Joe Slowinski, a USBC Gold Coach, is the Director of Bowling at Lincoln Memorial University, where he serves as program administrator and Head USBC Collegiate men’s and NCAA women’s coach. The Portland, Maine native has served as the Administrative and Men's Head Coach at Webber International University and served for four years as a Master Teaching Professional at the Kegel Training Center. Slowinski is also the former Director of Coaching and Coach Certification for the National Sports Council of Malaysia. He has coached international teams at the World Championships, Pan American Games, South American Games, and European Championships. He was the 2018 NTCA DII/III Coach of the Year and the 2010 NCBCA Men’s College Coach of the Year.