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Bowling Leverage And Swing Lag

In bowling, the definition of “leverage” can be power generated by the sliding and lifting motion of the legs. Increasing leverage, therefore, begins with using your legs to your maximum benefit regardless of your age or skill level.

By gradually increasing the length of each step and by using increased knee flex, the big muscles in your legs are brought more into use when your knee flex increases which, in turn, generates additional power when merged with the forward momentum you gain as each step increases slightly in pace.

No question that your legs are the key to gaining leverage and building a power base from which to release your bowling ball with an accelerated forward swing and with your fair share of revs.

Most professional instructors prefer to not have you raise your legs by thrusting upward during your release as you slide into the foul line as would a weight lifter when trying to lift a heavy barbell off of the floor.

Instead, you can gain lift through your legs if you create a long slide. A long sliding step can be built from sufficient momentum of your steps leading into your slide step and with using enough knee bend in both your step before you slide and with your sliding leg.

Your forward momentum propels you into a long slide when you combine an athletic upper-body posture with powerful leg action. These factors all contribute to increased leverage and provide a stable base from which to delivery your bowling ball.

Creating lag in your bowling swing is generated by your legs leading the way and your forward swing following so you are sliding with a stable body position while your swing accelerates into the delivery zone near the bottom of your forward swing.

In bowling, we can add power (more revs) by adding lag in the forward swing.

Adding lag in the forward swing requires the necessary arm and hand action so you get into position to uncoil your wrist as your thumb exits the bowling ball. This unhinging of your wrist as your thumb exits your ball produces an increase in your rev-rate.

Increasing lag in your swing in order to generate release power begins with an early timing sequence.


Early timing places your ball in position at the top of the backswing soon enough to be ready to start the down and forward swing motion once you plant your step before the slide ( pivot or power step) and launch your body into your sliding step by using the leverage generated by your legs.

The combination of leverage and lag places you in position to develop a strong release technique and gather a high amount of rev-rate, if you choose to do so. Using maximum leverage and creating swing lag also works well if you are a medium rev player.

By using your legs to help you gain momentum and leverage, you establish the solid platform from which you can develop swing lag so your wrist can trigger the release of your bowling ball and create some “pop” when your ball impacts the bowling pins.