Article Contents

  • 1. To over-extend or not
  • 2. Upper body
  • 3. Footwork
  • 4. Last thoughts
  • 5. It’s a wrap

A major problem that a lot of bowlers have is an inability to properly create a long swing that will help them get the ball farther down the lane and create a later reaction. I’d like to talk about how to create that nice long swing so you can get more length and still not lose the leverage of that swing.

To over-extend or not

To help you get a full understanding of how to unlock the swing motion without restriction, try this exercise. Stand with your feet together and keep your back fully upright. Extend your bowling arm out fully, as shown in the photo “Arm Extended.”

Once you have established this position, swing your arm back; you will find the length of the swing will be inhibited, as shown in the photo “Arm Extended Back.” I bring this to your attention because the majority of bowlers will try to set their arms farther away from them to create a longer swing, when in fact this usually “restricts” the motion of the swing.

In order to get a better understanding of how the swing works, let’s try another exercise. Again, keep your feet together and keep your back fully upright, but instead of fully extending the bowling arm away from you, extend your arm with a slight flex in the elbow and at a slight downward angle, as shown in the photo “Arm Not Extended.” Once you have established this position, swing the bowling arm back. Notice that your arm can now travel back father and with less restriction (See “Arm Not Extended Back”). You should be able to feel the difference in the range of motion of your swing and create a longer armswing.

Pro bowlers who have long, high swings include Pete Weber, Wes Mallot, Danny Wiseman, and Parker Bohn. None of them over-extend their pushaway, yet all are able to generate a high ball speed.

Upper body

Let’s move on to creating a long, high swing using the upper body. Using degrees of upper body lean to ...

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Bill Hall

About Bill Hall

Bill Hall is a Silver Certified USBC coach with Bill Hall Bowling. He has worked for the PBA Tour from 1980 to 1998 and coached internationally from 1998 to 2012. Bill has now returned to his home in Las Vegas and has recently introduced the new fitting technique Tri Grip. Bill is also the founder of Blend10 Bowling.