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An Athletic Bowling Posture

If you are learning to bowl, it is important to set-up on the approach with an athletic bowling posture so you can walk to the foul line and deliver the bowling ball accurately and with good balance. It all starts with a well balanced stance position.

It helps to visualize an athletic posture used by players in other sports to better understand good bowling posture. In many sports, the athlete will assume a ready position before moving into action.

In basketball, a defender will be set with the knees flexed considerably and with the upper body tilted forward. They will have the tail back slightly so the entire weight of the torso is positioned above the legs and the player is ready to spring into action quickly.

In baseball, the batter will have their knees flexed so the big muscles help generate power. The upper body is tilted forward slightly so the truck of the body is positioned over the batter’s legs and the tail is back to stabilize the center of balance of the batter’s body. From this position, the batter can react quickly to a 90 mile per hour pitch and swing the bat effectively.

In golf, the player has the legs spread wide enough to accommodate the type of shot to be played. The knees are flexed and the tail is placed back with the upper body tilted forward, so a spine angle is created between a vertical line up from the ground and with the golfer’s back. From this posture, the golfer has good balance and can begin the golf swing effectively.

In bowling, much the same is required in the stance position on the approach before taking the first step to bowl, except the bowler will set-up with the feet very close together before walking up to bowl.

Place your feet with your toes pointing toward the pins and with your sliding bowling shoe slightly ahead of your other shoe. Your shoes can be about an inch apart to promote stability in your stance position.

Tilt your upper body forward, perhaps 10 or 15 degrees of spine angle tilt, to place the front portion of your shoulders in a line directly above the knee caps.

Check that your bowling shoulder is no more than an inch or so lower than your non-bowling shoulder. .

Hold the bowling ball with the center of the ball positioned in front of your bowling shoulder close to your body and about waist high, or as high as is comfortable. Your bowling hand should be underneath the ball supporting the weight of the ball.

The bottom portion of your chin should be positioned at least shoulder level or higher and maintain that head position throughout your approach.

By taking your stance position as just described, you are in an excellent bowling athletic posture and are ready to bowl.

Since you have set-up in a well balanced position, a good strategy is to walk to the foul line with virtually no head movement to stabilize your body as you deliver your bowling ball.

The same strategy applies with your upper body. Avoid any sudden change of spine angle while walking and delivering your ball.


Being in a stable position when releasing your bowling ball is very important for making accurate shots. If you are able to eliminate any unneeded or wasted body motion during your approach, with only your legs moving and your arm swinging your ball, you will maintain your athletic posture and be in a stable position to deliver your ball.

Successful shot making in bowling begins with a good athletic set-up in your stance position and preserving the good posture throughout your approach.

By using proper positioning in your set-up on the approach, you have a very good chance of bowling well. If you wish to improve your game and acquire additional information, it is recommended to consult with an experienced bowling instructor to learn more important fundamentals of the game.

Good bowling fundamentals are developed from starting with an athletic posture.