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How To Make a Good Bowling Set Up

Learning how to make a good bowling set up is an important component in developing proper bowling technique. New or beginning bowlers should place emphasis on learning a good initial set-up position on the approach and before walking to the foul line to deliver the bowling ball. In bowling, as in most sports, the trick to learning good technique begins with how to make a good bowling set up.

The stance position, or set-up position, establishes correct body posture, balance, positioning of the ball, leg action and overall alignment. Everything works off of a solid set-up position. Establishing a “pre-shot routine” whereby the identical set-up procedure is taken every time you step onto the approach will enhance your chances in making an effective delivery and will ultimately lead to good scoring.

Before stepping onto the approach surface, make sure you know precisely where you wish to position your feet.  Pay attention to your distance from the foul line and to your positioning relative to the guides in the boards on the approach. Place your feet so your bowling shoe toes are pointing slightly toward your target and each toe in the same direction. Spread your bowling shoes perhaps one or two boards apart for balance and stability and with your slide shoe an inch or two ahead of your balance leg shoe.

Flex the knees forward slightly as to place the front of your knee caps directly over the toes of your shoes.  Flexing the knees slightly will bring the big muscles of your legs into play and create automatic leverage during delivery. Maintain knee flex throughout the approach to the foul line so you can easily transfer your body weight onto your sliding step and be in position to make an effective release of the bowling ball.

Lean forward about 10–15 degrees body tilt as to align your the front part of your shoulders in a direct line over your knees caps and the toes of your bowling shoes. Make sure your head remains level and your chin remains at lease shoulder level or higher and maintain that posture throughout your approach, delivery and finishing position at the foul line. By maintaining slight forward body tilt and maintaining knee flex during your set up and throughout the steps of your approach, you will generate automatic leverage and power simply by being in a good athletic position when delivering the bowling ball.

Place the bowling ball in your hand with the center of the ball aligned in front of your bowling elbow. The closer the ball is to your body, the more relaxed are the arm muscles.

You may hold the ball low near your knees with your bowling arm elbow resting against your body. Most bowlers, however, prefer to hold the ball about waist level. You may do so by positioning the ball in front of the bowling shoulder and as close to the body as is comfortable. Also, you may hold your ball where the center of the ball is at or very near shoulder level and positioned in front of the bowling shoulder.

Any height you may choose to hold the ball can work but once you begin your approach, the weight of the ball swinging should not alter your posture during your approach to the foul line. Maintain this relationship of shoulders above the knees throughout the walk to the foul line to ensure good balance and stability while releasing the ball.

Keep your head level with as little movement side to side or up and down as possible with your chin at or above shoulder level so you will be able remain well balanced while walking to the foul line. Try to keep your head still throughout the approach with your eyes fixed on your target to help you maintain good overall balance and a sense of direction where to propel the bowling ball.

These keys will establish a good bowling set-up position. A good result in bowling begins by means of a well-planned “pre-shot routine” and most importantly, a good set up position. It is highly recommended to consult a certified bowling instructor or a local bowling professional to help you learn about key components of the game.

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