Why Bowlers Should Lift Heavy

The benefits of functional strength training


I came across a comment one day about lifting heavy weights that really got me thinking about people’s perceptions of strength training. Someone had said, “I don’t lift heavy. I only do functional training.” I stopped in my tracks, confused as to why this person thought that lifting heavy wasn’t “functional.”  As someone who has been around strength training for a long time, I realized that this is probably a more common thought process than I’d imagined.

I have noticed that there seems to be this fear around lifting heavier weights stemming from misconceptions, such as “lifting heavy weights is dangerous and how people get hurt in the gym” and “lifting heavy weights just makes you bulky and stiff.” Many bowlers seem to think that their mobility and flexibility will decrease when they lift weights in any capacity, especially if they lift heavy weights. They feel the need to stick to cardio and stretching. All of this couldn’t be further from the truth, so this article is going to explain more about the benefits of lifting weights and why it is something bowlers can and should do.

What is strength?

Strength is the quality of being physically capable of exerting great force and the capacity to withstand great force or pressure. If we look at the synonyms in the dictionary for “strong,” you’ll see words like durable, powerful, tough, sturdy, capable, tough, and well-protected. Looking at the antonyms, there are words like frail, weak, fragile, delicate, feeble, and flimsy, among many others. Who wouldn’t want to be strong?!

Strength training is a type of exercise done to improve strength and endurance. The goal of strength training is to make your body more durable, tough, and powerful. When people think of lifting weights, they often think of building big muscles and looking like a bodybuilder, professional wrestler, or action hero. While it ...

Heather Sterner

About Heather Sterner

Heather is an NSCA-certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist, an ACE-certified Personal Trainer, a Certified Functional Strength Coach, and a Licensed Massage Therapist. She has a Master's in Kinesiology (Exercise Science). Heather is a former collegiate bowler for Robert Morris University and assistant coach for the University of Central Missouri. She currently works with athletes of all sports and has recently launched BowlFIT, a website with training programs for bowlers. Heather is also the Head Strength and Conditioning Coach for SUNY Brockport.