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gutterball - James Rawlson

(source: perfectbowling.com)

Anyone who’s felt the rush of a strike knows the competitive joy and satisfaction that bowling can bring. But a few gutter balls or missed opportunities can bring even the highest spirits into a pool of frustration. So how can you eliminate those gutter balls and inch your way toward breathtaking bowling success? All you need is the right information, some practice, and the heartfelt drive to succeed.

Follow these 5 steps to give your bowling game the jumpstart it needs:

Find Your Ball: In bowling, you won’t find a more important piece of equipment than the bowling ball itself. If you use a ball that is too heavy or small for you, you won’t get the results you desire. Try out many different balls until you get one that fits your fingers properly and feels good in your hands.

Practice Regularly: As with any sport, you need to practice regularly in order to see marked signs of progress and improvement. Playing a few times enough is simply not enough. Join a league or find another way to practice at least a couple times a week — you’ll improve by watching those who are better than you and competing up to their level.

Walk the Walk: Whether you decide on a four or five-step lead, you should practice it over and over again so that it becomes second nature. Once you’ve ingrained that walk into your muscle memory, you’ll find that it becomes a way of calmly centering yourself before each swing. With a consistent approach, you’ll have one fewer variable to throw off your swing each time you bowl.

Roll, Don’t Throw: If your bowling ball makes a loud thud every time you throw it, you’re probably hurting your score. That’s because you’re literally “throwing” your ball and not rolling it. A rolled bowling ball will quietly race down the lane with more control, knocking over more pins than its thrown counterpart.

Visualize Your Technique: There is evidence to support visualization as a useful technique for improving one’s physical abilities. Spend time to really think about where you want to aim the ball before you take your approach. Then take a few seconds after your turn to evaluate how your throw compared to your visualized version. If it was too far left, you’ll remember to adjust slightly the next time around.