Bowl America

Bowling Tips

 Push, Shuffle, Slide, Shake

These are the four steps to hitting pins and a lot of bowling fun. By using this Bowl America method, everyone can keep the ball on the lane more often.

Lane Markings:

In order to start off right, you must first understand the markings on the lanes. You will find two rows of dots near the ball return. The first row of dots will help us establish a place to start our approach. The foul line is the line dividing the approach from the lane. Never cross the foul line. The set of arrows about 20 feet past the foul line will be used to help you aim the ball. The arrow farthest from the foul line is the exact center of the lane. Right-handed bowlers will target the first arrow to the right of the center arrow, while left-handed bowlers will use the first arrow to the left of the center arrow. 

Bowling Lane Markings

Where to Start:

Now we need to find a comfortable place to start on the approach. With your heels on the foul line and your back to the pins, take four and one half normal walking paces toward the bowlers area, turn around, and stand with the largest dot (the center dot) between your feet. Later you can make adjustments to accommodate your delivery. Get comfortable. Keep your feet together, your knees slightly bent, and your hands at waist level while holding the ball. Take a deep breath, focus on your target arrow and you’re ready to begin. 

Remember – Push, Shuffle, Slide, Shake.

Although these are treated as separate actions for the purpose of teaching, the delivery is one continuous motion. 


Push: Start your delivery with your ball-side foot. If you are right-handed, begin with your right foot. Push the ball away from your body toward your target arrow as you walk. Let your arm swing naturally with the ball as you continue your delivery. Think of a pendulum motion, such as a pebble on the end of a string. When the string is pulled taut and the pebble is released, the pebble will swing freely. If the string is not taut when the pebble is released, the pebble will jerk around rather than swing freely.

Shuffle: Walk normally without lifting your heels, almost like a shuffle. Keep your eyes focused on your target arrow throughout your delivery until you see the ball cross your target. Just as a good hitter will see the baseball hit the bat, a good bowler will see the ball cross the target.

Slide and Shake: These steps are addressed together since they should take place almost together to complete your delivery. On your fourth step you should slide with the foot opposite your ball hand, delivering the ball toward your target arrow reaching out with your hand as if to shake hands with it.

Ball Selection:

Ball selection and proper fit are important to help ensure a smooth delivery and release of the ball. Bowl America centers have a wide selection of balls available for you to use. The number engraved on each ball indicates the weight of the ball from 6 to 16 pounds. To find a ball that best fits your hand, first place your thumb in the single hole and lay your open palm flat against the ball so that your two middle fingers lay over the other holes. The knuckles of your two middle fingers should lay just over the edge of the holes. Both fingers and your thumb should slide easily in and out of the holes.

Now you’re ready to enjoy the sport of bowling!