Article Contents

  • 1. Momentum’s role in shot repetition
  • 2. Fighting momentum with momentum
  • 3. Who should try speeding up?
  • 4. The ultimate goal

Slow down, slow down! Everyone from our youth bowling coach to the State Trooper we’ve come to know on a first name basis keeps telling us to slow down. Okay, maybe that last one is just me, but they are all telling us to slow down. Our teammates tell us to slow down. Heck, we even tell ourselves to slow down after we pull one right through the nose for the dreaded big four split.

The truth is a lot of bowlers need to speed their feet up especially if they have a shorter or smaller physique. That pulled shot that rewarded you with the big four split was more likely the result of slow feet, not fast feet.

When we walk too slowly the ball can outrun our feet and beat us to the foul line. This is early timing at the foul line and feels like we were in a rush at the last second. In actuality, what is happening is just when we are ready to perform our best Chris Barnes release, the ball is already ready to leave the hand. The early arrival of the ball puts us in a weak leverage position and we don’t have time to complete the swing. This is what causes the ball to have a “pulled” type of trajectory instead of the one we intended. Since all of this happens so quickly we equate that “rushed” feeling with fast feet in our mind. The solution is to speed the feet up in many cases, not slow them down.

Momentum’s role in shot repetition

A swinging bowling ball has a lot of energy called momentum. That momentum can influence bowlers a lot more than they think by pulling them around. When I say pull a bowler around, I mean that the swinging ball has an effect on our body which in turn has an effect on our swing path and, ultimately, the trajectory of the ball.

Sometimes you can actually see the ball pull a bowler around, but most times the effect is very subtle. It’s a lot like shooting a rifle if the gun barrel were made of rubber instead of steel. Even if the rubber barrel could withstand the blast, its flexing nature would cause each bullet take a different path. The momentum of a bowling ball ...

Ron Clifton

About Ron Clifton

Ron Clifton has been coaching at the professional level for 15 years. He conducts “Advanced Bowler Training Clinics” across the U.S. and is the inventor and manufacturer of Ron C’s Magic Carpet for thumbholes. Ron can be found on the web at www.bowl4fun.com.