Shooting high scores requires effective control over ball speed that, in turn, should be adjusted with consideration to the type of ball being thrown and the lane conditions. Keep in mind, too, that the ball speed will have a significant effect on the ball hitting or missing the breakpoint – too fast, for example, will make the ball miss the breakpoint and get into the pocket.
Here, we will discuss the effective ways of throwing a slower ball. We also want to emphasize that these tips may or may not apply in your case depending on your bowling style.
Lower the Ball
The lower the ball, the slower it will be once released. But don’t lower it too much that your arm swing will be negatively affected.
If you only need a slightly slower ball speed, then you can lower the ball between 2-3 inches in your stance. If you need to slow down ball speed significantly, you may lower it about 8-10 inches in your stance.
Tip: Slightly bend your knees, which will bring the ball closer to the ground.
But look beyond the height of the ball in your stance. You have to consider, too, your bowling style. If you have a muscled arm swing, you have to practice more in adjusting ball speed; if you have a relatively free arm swing, you will find that ball speed adjustments come easier.
Move Up on the Approach
Keep in mind that lowering the ball for slower speed means changing the swing cycle (i.e., the time it takes for the ball to progress from swing to release). The ball will likely complete its swing cycle in a faster manner even when you’re throwing it for slower speed.
For this reason, you may want to move up on the approach to make up for the lower height of the ball. You will be more likely to keep your timing by doing so, too. Your brain will also adjust by compressing the number and slowing down your steps since it views the foul line as being closer that it was before.
Again, practice is a must so that you can get your timing in both your footwork and arm wing in sync when you want to slow down your ball’s speed. You can, fortunately, change ball speed at will and at small degrees with practice.
You have to assess the lane conditions at Star & Strikes, too. You may find that only a small change in speed is required in some lanes but a significant change is needed in other lanes, such as in a flooded lane where cutting your normal speed nearly in half may be necessary.