Article Contents

  • 1. Stance
  • 2. Pushaway
  • 3. Armswing

Serious bowlers practice as often as possible. Although a practice regimen may seem beneficial, it can also be an exercise in futility if you practice the wrong things. One of my basic philosophies is REPITITION CREATES HABIT. Habits can either be good or bad, advantageous or detrimental. Consequently, the smartest and most successful bowlers practice proper execution and reassure their goals through the use of video and checklists.

Although I recommend video, I utilize an alternate system for corrective measures in proper bowling execution, a do and don’t checklist. In lieu of video, I utilize several systems for placing a bowler in the most advantageous position for releasing a quality delivery. Although every suggestion of my checklist isn’t applied to every bowler, it is flexible and designed to develop precise timing and rhythm; an absolute must for delivering a shot from the strongest leverage point through minimum effort and flawless balance.

I realize video can be reviewed over and over. Film can certainly reveal flaws in a bowler’s delivery. However, video per se does not offer suggestions for correctional measures. Unless a bowler is able to recall curative measures, she will require outside help. Therefore, a well-chronicled checklist serves as reference for applying corrective steps. My checklist addresses stance, pushaway, armswing, approach, knee bend, release, release point, and follow through.

Each of these play an integral role in placing a bowler in a balanced position to release the ball at its greatest possible advantage for a quality shot. Nonetheless, a high percentage delivery can be accomplished despite the absence of one or several of these prescribed exercises. The manner is which a bowler arrives at the foul line in a position to uncork a positive delivery is irrelevant. A checklist recommendation merely serves to facilitate an ideal delivery and does not necessarily imply it is the only method for releasing a ball properly.

Unfortunately, SOME instructors steadfastly go “by the book” and fail to recognize the success of bowlers who apply unusual methods of execution. Despite the fact I favor players who deliver quality shots in textbook fashion, I cannot, and will not, alter any bowler who has enjoyed success in his own inimitable fashion. For example, why would any instructor have attempted to alter the styles of Don Carter, Marshall Holman, Mark Roth, or Harry Smith? None even ...

John Jowdy

About John Jowdy

John Jowdy has been a bowler, author, instructor, and speaker over the last 60 years. He was coach to some of the most successful bowlers on tour. John’s awards and accomplishments include: Bowling Coaches Hall of Fame, ABC and PBA Halls of Fame, International Bowling Coach of the Year. He was a contributing writer for Bowling This Month for 13 years. John Jowdy passed away in 2013 at age 93.