Are you eager to play a game of lawn bowls but haven’t a clue about how to actually bowl the ball? What about perfecting your stance? How on earth do you make the ball curve around?
We’ve seen many a bowler launch the bowl so hard that it’s like a rolling bomb waiting to blast all bowls and people off the green. You don’t need to be a physically strong player to successfully bowl a bowling ball – our older bowlers are great at the game for a reason.
Here’s some tips to help you prepare for a fun and successful game of lawn bowls:
- First thing’s first, prepare your bowling hand by shaking it by your side. All sports require a little warm up.
- Place your hand at arm’s length in front of you, flip it so that your palm is facing upwards. Have your hand relaxed, with a natural finger spread – don’t force your fingers to spread.
- Place the bowl in your hand. To set your fingers on the ball, place your middle fingers in the centre of the bowl’s running surface. Place your first and third fingers on the indented rings (outer of the bowl). Place your thumb at the back, no higher than the outer rings.
- The centre of the bowl and should be running directly in line with your arm, elbow, shoulder.
The way you stand on your mat is fundamental to the way you deliver the ball.
- Stand behind the mat, facing the line.
- Step onto the mat with the anchor foot (the foot that will stay planted during the delivery) on the middle of the mat. It should be pointed towards your intended delivery line – this will not be parallel to the green as your aim is to curve the bowl.
- Focus your eyes on the end point and have your knees and shoulders facing your delivery line.
- Bend your knees slightly, lift your arm/bowl so that it’s at about a 90 degree angle. Lock your arm. Place the free hand on thigh to help with balance.
- You’re ready to bowl!
It’s all about maximum force with minimal effort. Remember, the bowl will not go in a straight line so it must be delivered away from the delivery line, so that the bowl will curve.
- With your feet on the mat, reconfirm your focus point.
- Extend your arm along your delivery line.
- With a controlled pendulum swing motion, move your arm back. Your lead foot (not anchor foot) will move forward.
- Swing your arm forward in a straight line and your lead foot heel is grounded in front of you.
- Your lower body will continue to move forward as your bowl.
- When your bowl is released, your head and body weight will remain forward and palm faces upward.
And there you have it – you’ve just bowled and hopefully landed near the jack. Bowling is all about mental preparation, perfecting your routine, focus, confidence and control. If you master all of this you’ll be on your way to the Pennants in no time!