Working on improving your game

Today, the Big Rapids All-Star bowlers representing the USBC Women’s and USBC BA (formerly known as the men’s) associations are facing off at The Gate Entertainment Center. Bowling is scheduled to begin at 1:00 PM with the promise of fierce competition and great sportsmanship. Come out and cheer on the bowlers but if you can’t make it, I’ll have the results from the competition in next week’s article.

The All-Star bowlers are chosen based upon their average from last years competition. Practice is what gets people to a higher average. Maybe not by practicing every day or even at this point in their bowling life but at some point, they all put in the time and effort to learn how to deliver the ball consistently which results in greater pinfall. Practice is a key ingredient in having a higher average.

The question that begs to be asked is do you know how to practice or do you know what to practice to improve your game? Most of us know when there is a problem with our game. However, many of us attack the symptoms. Chasing the symptoms only leads to frustration and poorer performance. When you identify the actual problem and fix it, the symptoms go away.

An example of this may be that you are coming around the ball too early at the release. In this scenario, the problem is not the release but the lack of leverage at the foul line because of poor timing or drifting on the approach. An athlete uses their body to throw in all sports. When the ball reaches the foul line before your body (early timing) you loose leverage to project the ball.

The solution would be to create later timing so that your body is ahead of the ball at the foul line allowing you to keep your hand behind the ball better. To create later timing, you need to start the ball moving later in your approach or slow your armswing down. a symptom of early timing is fast feet. Rather than trying to concentrate on your feet, slow your armswing down.

When we used weaker rubber or urethane bowling balls it was common to walk straight toward your target and play straight up the boards on the lane. With todays high friction ball surfaces you need to project the ball out onto the lane before it hooks back to the pocket. When you walk straight forward, your body is in the swing plane of your ball. To compensate, your hand closes and gets to the side of the ball early in the release.

By walking “left” to the foul line, for right-handers, your body is out of the swing plane of the ball which allows you to keep your hand behind the ball. In this position, you are able to project the ball in an outward angle while keeping your hand behind it.

Ideally, improving your game is dependant upon having a trained eye watching you that can identify problems and offer solutions for you to practice. In nearly every case, having a coach will alleviate the symptoms that plague your game faster and more efficiently than self-discovery.

An early Christma Gift was dropped from Santa’s Sleigh for Tim Hickman this past week with a 300 game! He also is the recipient of an 804 series which he rolled in the Friday Night Men’s League. While this achievement is earned and not gifted, it is a wonderful present to receive. Congratulations Tim. The women also showed their expertise by a single participant as Kathy Dettmer totaled 633 with a high game of 223 in the Eastgate Dames & Dudes League. Nice rolling and keep them coming.

With this being the beginning of December, Christmas is a short 24 more days away. Next week we will talk about some gift ideas for the bowler in your life. Until then, good luck and good bowling!

Last week’s results in the Individual leagues:

FRIDAY NIGHT MEN’S – Tim Hickman 804; Peter Norriss 702; Mark Bowman 674; James Buscaino 667; Chris Baker 667; Tim Hickman 300; Ron Collins III 278; Chris Baker 255; Mark Bowman 247; John Vanwagner 246; James Buscaino 246; and team efforts: Professional Dental 3415; Pin Busters 3091; The Bowler’s Corner 3057; Big Rapids Towing 2968;Bulldog Fitness 2876; Big Rapids Trophies & T 2847; Professional Dental 1174; Pin Busters 1119; Big Rapids Towin 1048; The Bowler’s Corner 1047; U.S 1025 ; and All City Cab 992.

TUESDAY NIGHT HOUSE – Curt Yerger 709; Randy Ward 702; Butch Yerger 670; Butch Yechaz 289; Rick Keeler 248; Randy Ward 245; and team efforts; Ryan Creek Apartments 3041; 1045; Custom Vinyl Design 2802; 1021 and Wild Rose Café 2854; 1015.

WEDNESDAY NIGHT KEGLERS – Cheryl Colley; 569; Cheryl Harris 517; Barb Frost 504; DeAnna Allers 206; Cheryl Colley 205; Julie Johansen 204; and team efforts: Comstock House 2373; 802; C-Ray Heating & Air Conditioning 2312; 808; Morningstar’s 2236; and 838.


MONDAY NIGHT MEN – Josh Moore 655; John VanWagner 651; Richard Coby 647; Jerry Whiting 647; Darrell Aldrich 624; Josh Moore 655; Darrell Aldrich 248; Chad Currie 247; John VanWagner 247; and team efforts: Wally’s Drywall 824; 2369; Clear Lake Golf 814; Morningstar 802; 2333; and Custer Builders 2214.

SATURDAY NON-SMOKING — Chris White 667; Jim Cook 609; John Bechaz 530; Chris White 243; Jim Cook 237; Matthew Smith 203; Kim Wilber 528; Terri Cook 484; Diane White 442; and team efforts: Four Play 2022; 712; Pin Setters 1888; 666, Gutter-Done 1837; 632.

THE GATE HOUSE – Cindy Snavley 587; 224; Nellie Charron 534;209; Tammy Finch 525; Julie Ginnever 209; Nellie Charron 205; and team efforts: Cindy’s Cut & Curl 2407; 854; Eaton Heating and Air Conditioning 2207; and Isabella Bank & Trust 790; 2923

EASTGATE DAMES & DUDES – Todd Forgue 633; Roger Andrews 621; Rick Loop 601; Aaron Hapner 588; Todd Forgue 245; Roger Andrews 226; Rick Loop 212; John Chadra 212; Jim Weed 207; Aaron Hapner 207; Kathy Dettmer 633; Joan Foote 525;Cathy L. Smith 507; Karen Moore 454; Shirley Apsey 450; Kathy Dettmer 223; Joan Foote 199; Cathy L. Smith; Deana Norriss 181; Karen Moore 180.

EARLY KINGS & QUEENS – Kevin Sherman 632; Mike Cline 622; NateStrong 622; Kvin Sherman 247; Mike Cline 226; Nate Strong 224; Karen Morningstar 541; Shelly Myers 519; Judy Hoffman 498; Karen Morningstar 203; Linda Sherman 191; Marilyn Marzolf 191; and team efforts: Morningstars 747; 2170; Pin Busters 701; B S 698; 1985; and Good Time Roller 2011.

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