The way we talk to ourselves–even in our heads–can influence our current and future bowling performances. Here are some simple tips for helping you improve your self-talk on the lanes:

  • Avoid using the word “should” (i.e. “I should have known I’d choke and miss the cut!”)
  • Use statements of intent instead of statements of avoidance. For example, “stop muscling the ball!” is a statement of avoidance that describes what you want to STOP doing. It is far better to describe what you INTEND to do, such as “relaxed, free armswing.”
  • Talk to yourself the same way you would talk to a teammate.

Negative self-talk is a habit that initially requires conscious, deliberate effort to change. Be on the lookout for negative self-talk and make the decision to change your patterns for the better. Good luck and high scores!