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How To Reduce Bowling Hook On Dry Lanes

If you are averaging 180 or less and are struggling on dry lanes, learning a few keys on how to reduce bowling hook on dry lanes will help you achieve improved control of your bowling ball. Developing techniques on how to reduce bowling hook on dry lanes involves several factors.

Here are a few ideas for you when dry lanes become more challenging than needed. These techniques will also help you convert spares and hit the pocket consistently:

Ball Speed - Increase your ball speed slightly by generating more swing velocity, both on the back swing and on the forward swing and follow-through motion. Increase your bowling ball loft over the foul line to effectively shorten the lane.

Ball Change - If you have a polyester or regular urethane ball which you use for spares, try using that ball for your strike deliveries. If you have several balls in an up-to-date equipment arsenal, then switch to a ball where the texture of the surface is smooth and the drilling layout does not encourage a sharp back end hook motion. Don't be stubborn; change your bowling ball if it hooks much more than desired.

Use bowling balls with a relatively low Differential of RG so the track flare is minimal and the ball will tend to hold its line on the very dry back ends of the lanes. Sometimes polishing a ball coverstock, particularly on a pearl reactive coverstock, might make the ball create increased friction on the back end and promote a stronger hook motion than desired. Be careful not to use polish which restores the "tacky" felling on the ball surface, particularly with pearl reactive bowling balls.

Alignment - Change your strike alignment to increase a wider angle from the release point on the front end of the lane to the break point on the back end of the lane. Adjustments with both your feet positioning on the approach and with your siting target on the lane are needed to compensate for the changing lane conditions.

Normally, bowling at night during late leagues, after the leagues, or on weekends (after a great deal of linage at the center has been accumulated) will cause the lane oil to break down in the front end and carry down onto the back end. The first sign of this is when your ball hooks sooner than you anticipate and then an adjustment on the lanes to alter your angle to the break point down the lane becomes necessary.

Generally, if your ball rolls or hooks too soon due to dry lane conditions, then adjusting the positioning of your feet on the approach and your sighting target on the lane toward the center of the lane to compensate for the early hook motion is a dependable adjustment. A good technique is to move your feet two boards on the approach and your sighting target on the lane one board in the same direction so you automatically make an effective angle change and increase your chances of the ball hitting the pocket.

Be sure to move both your feet and your target on the lane together and in the same direction. There are always exceptions to any "rules of thumb" such as using 3:1 ratio adjustments, 1:1 ratio adjustments, and 5:3 adjustments. The adjustment technique of 2:1 is effective on most house conditions and use of multiple adjustments (4:2, 6:3, 8:4, etc.) can be boldly made to decrease the amount of time it takes to get lined up again on dry lanes.

Changing your Release - To produce a small and consistent hook, less finger rotation at the moment of release is required than if you wish to produce a larger hooking action in heavy oil. Less hook is easy to control.

Place your bowling hand under the ball in your set-up on the approach with the palm of your hand facing upward toward the ceiling. Try and maintain this hand positioning throughout your entire arm swing cycle and as your hand releases the ball.

The lesser rotation with your bowling fingers will allow your hand to stay behind the ball during the release and follow-through motion and will promote less axis-tilt applied to the ball and a lesser degree of hook on the back end of the lane.

Releasing the bowling ball with little or no finger rotation will develop an end-over-end rolling motion on the bowling ball. It is important to also reduce the rev-rate without losing ball speed to help keep the ball on line and avoid an early hooking motion on dry lanes.

If you allow your wrist to tilt back as if to keep your thumb in the ball longer than usual, you will reduce ball-revs and increase the skid length on the front end. By allowing your fingers to apply a lesser amount of releasing action on the bowling ball and merely allow the ball to flow off of your hand will encourage a long ball skid.

Decreasing finger rotation during your release and allowing the ball to flow off of your hand with your wrist hinged back slightly will definitely reduce revs and increase ball skid for dry lanes.

Combination Effect - Combining a ball change from an aggressive coverstock to one with a smooth texture and stiff coverstock material, an alignment change to increase the delivery angle from the release point in the front end to the break point on the back end, and eliminating finger rotation while keeping you hand behind the bowling ball will work in tandem to reduce overall hook on dry lane conditions.


Practice on dry lanes whenever possible in non-competitive circumstances so you can experiment with these techniques and find a way to be effective controlling your bowling ball hook.

bowlingball.com always recommends you consult your certified bowling instructor or an experienced local coach, possibly your pro shop professional, to help you develop a strategy to overcome excessive hook on dry lanes.

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