Article Contents

  • 1. Something special
  • 2. You have to breathe to live
  • 3. Take your time
  • 4. Playing for the love of the game
  • 5. Putting it all together

Imagine preparing to roll a ball in the most meaningful frame of your life. How do you pick that one? Really, this could be anything. It might be the tenth frame of a mega-bucks tournament. Perhaps it is a shot to make a cut at a regional or national PBA stop. Maybe it is the first frame of your league championship.

What makes any shot meaningful is really personal. Yet there are some things that tend to stand out for just about anyone. The size of the stage, the size of the prize, and the symbolism of the victory are generally determining factors when gearing up intensity. That said, it is hard to imagine many bowling tournament situations that would be more loaded than having your country’s flag on your back.

“Just take a breath and let it go.”
Liz Johnson, Member 2011 Women’s Team USA when asked what to do when you really need to roll a high profile shot

This month, teams from around the globe are preparing for the World Tenpin Bowling Association Women’s World Championship in Hong Kong. There are few events in bowling that can match this for intensity, meaning, and honor. Bowling for money is one thing. Bowling for personal pride and awards is another. Bowling for one’s country is hard to describe or compare to anything else.

Yet, as in all things, what works in the most intense competition arenas will certainly work in any other performance setting as well. This month we are going to look at your options when you have the proverbial one shot, or one game, for the money. Some players cannot wait to place themselves in this situation. Others dread it and shrink from the opportunity. Yet, one never meets a competitor who says, “I hope I never get a shot at something big.”

Something special

“I close my eyes and visualize.”
Carolyn Dorin-Ballard, Member 2011 Women’s Team USA

July in Arlington, Texas was quietly special. Six of the best players in the world were preparing for the world championships. The roster included Liz Johnson, Kelly ...

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Dean Hinitz

About Dean Hinitz

Dr. Dean Hinitz is a clinical sports psychologist in Reno, Nevada, a bowler, a former competitive gymnast, and a black belt in Japanese-style Karate.