Practice is the key to becoming a good bowler. Here are some tips.
- It is important to receive some coaching first so you will have something worthwhile to practice. The coaching link on this website will also help with this.
- When you practice, bring a few jacks with you and try rolling them different distances - short, medium or long. Above all, the jack must not go outside the rink. This is essential practice if you are to play lead.
- Bowl to jacks at different distances. Practice forehand and backhand. Be sure not to ignore your weaker hand.
- Experienced bowlers say that it's harder to perfect your weight (distance) than your line (direction). Endeavour to be long (beyond the jack) rather than short. Short bowls far from the jack rarely count in the scoring and serve only to block other players. Long bowls far from the jack become important if the jack is knocked back. In a match this can happen by accident or design.
- Step off the mat between each bowl you play. This makes it harder to find the jack the next time but more closely simulates what would happen in a match.
- If practising for fours play, just play two bowls at a time or alternatively two bowls on each hand (forehand and backhand). If the first bowl is poor try to make the needed adjustments with the second bowl. Remember any irregularities on the rink for future shots.
- One way of organising your session is to lay down two mats, one at either end of the rink, and two jacks, each jack some distance in front of each mat. Then, whichever mat you stand on, you can practise bowling long to the other mat or short to the jack in front of it.
- The aim of your practice for now should be to become good at the draw shot (finishing near the jack) and to be able to do this consistently. Practice also helps you to know your home green, where you want to be better than the visiting players.