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Thread: A few practice games tonight after summer off

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    Default A few practice games tonight after summer off

    So had our league meeting tonight so I went in a little early and bowled a couple of games. First time touching a ball since about early May. First game was tough. Tried the Uppercut and kept going through the nose and splitting. 10 board was pretty dry. Moved in a little but no better. Tried to ball down with the Igniter but still going through the nose. First game 139...ugh. Second game went back to the Uppercut and picked up my speed a little and back at the 10 board. Started out at about 15.6 MPH-ish. Second game was closer to about 16.1. Started with 2 strikes, then missed a 4-7 slightly inside, then covered a 2-4-7 then threw the next 6 then had to cover the 7 pin in the fill for a 243. Not bad. I can live with that. Talked to the guy at the counter, who bowls with us, and he said those lanes hadn't been oiled since the night before before the summer league bowled so that explains the dry conditions. It's a 40 lane house and the lights were off from 25-40 and 1-24 was full of recreational bowlers so he put me on 26. Guessing they weren't planning on having that many people there and hadn't planned on using those lanes at the far end.

    I still don't have a team. Everyone quit and I'm the only one left so they are going to find a team needing a bowler. We have a bunch of teams with 7 or more on the roster and they alternate. I only bowl 1 night a week and want to bowl every week, or at least almost every week. It is nice having a sub if you have an emergency but there are a couple of teams with 9 or 10 bowlers and you only get to bowl once every 2 or 3 weeks. I specified at the meeting that I wan to bowl full-time so hopefully it works out.
    Last edited by boatman37; 08-11-2021 at 11:13 PM.
    Arsenal "15# Brunswick Uppercut" "15# Brunswick Igniter" "15# Radical Squatch Pearl" "15# Radical Conspiracy" "15# Brunswick Kingpin" "15# Hammer Black Widow Gold" "15# Brunswick Rhino Black Pearl" "15# Brunswick T-Zone"
    Rev Rate about 325 @ about 16 MPH at the pins* High Game: 279 - High Series: 725
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    I am a proud member of bowlingboards.com bowling forums

  2. #2
    Bowling God Aslan's Avatar
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    Aslan's Bowling Pet Peeve #1

    What's the point of practicing when the bowling ball movement is 70% dependent on reaction to oil conditions and the center isn't going to put down conditions you're likely to see when you bowl on league night? It's like practicing free throws with the basket at 7.5 feet or practicing field goal kicking from the sidelines.

    I mean, you may as well just practice spare shooting or physical aspects of your game and go home...because you could score 120 or 300 and it means the same thing on a random Saturday at a bowling center. And people wonder why it's not an Olympic sport?
    In Bag: (: .) DV8 Grudge Hybrid; (: .) Storm Optimus Solid; (: .) Pyramid Force Pearl; (: .) Brunswick Fortera Exile; (: .) Ebonite Maxim
    USBC#: 8259-59071; USBC Sanctioned Average = 182; Lifetime Average = 171;
    Ball Speed: 15.54mph; Rev. Rate: 240rpm || High Game (sanc.) = 300 (268); High Series (sanc.) = 725 (689); Clean Games: 170

    Smokey this is not 'Nam', this is bowling. There are rules. Proud two-time winner of a bowlingboards.com weekly ball give-away!

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by Aslan View Post
    Aslan's Bowling Pet Peeve #1

    What's the point of practicing when the bowling ball movement is 70% dependent on reaction to oil conditions and the center isn't going to put down conditions you're likely to see when you bowl on league night? It's like practicing free throws with the basket at 7.5 feet or practicing field goal kicking from the sidelines.

    I mean, you may as well just practice spare shooting or physical aspects of your game and go home...because you could score 120 or 300 and it means the same thing on a random Saturday at a bowling center. And people wonder why it's not an Olympic sport?
    The idea was more for my mechanics. Wasn't concerned with score but was happy I was able to adapt to the dry conditions. That has been a struggle for me. But like I said, my focus was just to get the feel of my approach, timing, etc after a summer off
    Arsenal "15# Brunswick Uppercut" "15# Brunswick Igniter" "15# Radical Squatch Pearl" "15# Radical Conspiracy" "15# Brunswick Kingpin" "15# Hammer Black Widow Gold" "15# Brunswick Rhino Black Pearl" "15# Brunswick T-Zone"
    Rev Rate about 325 @ about 16 MPH at the pins* High Game: 279 - High Series: 725
    Oh, and LEFTY!!!
    I am a proud member of bowlingboards.com bowling forums

  4. #4
    Pin Crusher Phonetek's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Aslan View Post
    Aslan's Bowling Pet Peeve #1

    What's the point of practicing when the bowling ball movement is 70% dependent on reaction to oil conditions and the center isn't going to put down conditions you're likely to see when you bowl on league night? It's like practicing free throws with the basket at 7.5 feet or practicing field goal kicking from the sidelines.

    I mean, you may as well just practice spare shooting or physical aspects of your game and go home...because you could score 120 or 300 and it means the same thing on a random Saturday at a bowling center. And people wonder why it's not an Olympic sport?
    You sound like my kid. You guys miss the point of what practice is for. The point of practice is to practice, not shoot for high scores. Practice is to work out whatever kinks you have in your game. Things like release, aspects of your approach, shooting 10 pins or whatever. Or simply like Boatman basically said, just to get out there after a long break. Knowing Boatman for a some time now, I know he's not practicing shooting for 300's and throwing a hissy fit when he doesn't. Often times I just shut the scoring monitor off because IT'S PRACTICE not a PBA match! Lane conditions are moot and score is moot. Once my kid gets that into his head he'll have more effective practice sessions.

    If lane conditions are that important then it's not difficult to ask the counter or call the center and ask when they oil before you go. Fortunately we oil daily or twice if need be, so I don't have to deal with things like this. I know that doesn't hold true for most centers around here. Given what I see here, not even around the country. We have real wood not synthetic so we have to oil for the reason is designed for, to protect the lanes. Not simply to make the bowlers happy.

    Besides, during most leagues everyone is throwing oil sucking sponges down the lane anyway so you might as well learn to adapt to dry lanes. I don't know about anyone else but I've built my arsenal around the shape of arc of what I am comfortable bowling with.

    I CAN bowl bowl with that big hockey stick arc but I don't prefer it. I don't care much for splits, wash outs and weird spare conversions if I miss my mark, so I avoid that game when possible. Yeah it looks impressive when you throw strikes but more often than not it leads to trouble. I have no need for a pro performance, high flare, 500 grit asymmetrical oil sucker very often. Therefore, my arsenal is put together to have more of a smooth arc. When my heavy oil ball starts doing the hockey sticks I switch to the next one down. Unless I see urethane on the rack then I start with weaker balls vs strongest. I know carry down will be an issue.

    On bone dry conditions I have a low performance reactive with a symmetrical core that still provides me that nice smooth arc I prefer. It doesn't lose energy 10 feet before it hits the pins. So far with what I have, I haven't had to resort to my spare ball for strike shots.

    I'm guessing the common mistake people are making when they build an arsenal they base it off of "What can give me the biggest hook?" vs "What can keep me in the game the longest?"
    As the pro's often say, "Straighter is greater." and that's what you need to keep in mind building an arsenal. Otherwise, I hope gutter chucking is something you're good at.

  5. #5
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    To Aslan's point, it is hard to practice things like release, approach, timing, etc. when you don't know if it is your mechanics that are causing an issue or the lane condition. The lane condition could be garbage, which in turn causes you to reinforce bad habits trying to subconsciously compensate your mechanics to accommodate the lane. Or, the lane condition is fine, but you are having a bad day and don't realize it is you and not the lane.

    I rarely go in and open bowl anymore despite having unlimited free bowling for the entire summer. It is pointless. Between the inconsistent lane conditions and the inconsiderate open bowlers, it just isn't productive or enjoyable. The lanes are freshly oiled prior to the start of our league. At least then I know that if I am not getting the reaction I want in warm-ups, it is more than likely something I am doing as opposed to the actual shot (or lack thereof.) That gives me 10 minutes to get it figured out.

  6. #6
    Bowling God Aslan's Avatar
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    Again...you're making the case that it's okay to practice shooting free throws at a 7ft basket and kick field goals from the sidelines.

    Why?

    Because; "hey...you're just going through the motions man! You're just trying to get your arc right...just trying to work on your follow-through. It don't matter if the ball goes in the basket or not...it's not about scoring. You're just getting out there and just getting loose."

    And, "who cares where you kick the ball from or if it goes through the uprights? You're just kicking the ball....you don't even need uprights in practice...just "imagine" uprights. It's just practice. It's all about leg extension and footwork and follow-through. You aim for the pole...doesn't matter if you're kicking it from the center of the field or the side of the field."

    See...we can make excuses in every sport for changing conditions in practice and saying, "it doesn't matter...it's just practice." And maybe it doesn't. You want to practice curling by rolling a basketball in a parking lot and running ahead of it with standard brooms...maybe that is the same thing. I dunno. You want to practice your dart game by throwing darts at a board that is 2 feet higher up on the wall? Go ahead. Maybe it won't matter.

    But bowling isn't just about physical ability. FAR FROM IT. I WISH IT WERE. Bowling has become 70% ability and 25% equipment. That MEANS...you can go practice your approach, release, timing, spare shooting...all those physical things. BUT...when you show up on league night...25% of your game is missing.

    And I see this ALL SEASON. Guys with 190-200 averages...guys in the state bowling hall of fame...who have all the physical bowling skills in the world...but they can't explain why their ball isn't doing something or why it is doing something. They make ball changes for odd reasons or no reason at all. They buy bowling balls for color or smell or brand loyalty or because their PSO recommended it because the PSO liked it.

    And those bowlers...they can't work on that 25%...on burnt conditions. They can't. It's not possible. It's not possible to determine where on a lane a ball is going to transition from one phase to another on burnt conditions. It's not possible to determine what board is the best starting board for a given ball that you've never thrown before...or a ball that you're trying at a new surface...on burnt conditions. It's not possible to compare the ball reactions of two balls...to see what the relationship is between two balls in your arsenal.

    And, bowling centers really argue this at their own peril. They are essentially arguing that you don't need to bowl...in order to practice bowling. If you don't need "league conditions, then you don't need "bowling conditions". Why bowl? Why not just "Wii bowl?" Why even do that? Why not just "imagine you're bowling?" Just walk in your living room and go through the motions...just visualize that you're bowling. It's all the same thing. Reality is over-rated.

    Someday in the future...1 of 4 things will cure this (in no order of likelihood):

    a) Bowling will cease to exist.

    b) Physical bowling will give way to video bowling.

    c) Lanes will automatically re-oil prior to the start of someone starting to bowl. (Imagine a robotic oiler that comes out from under the pin deck and cleans/oils the lane surface as the new bowlers enter their names in the scoring computer...then disappears under the pin deck).

    d) There will come a time when oiling will no longer be necessary as lanes will be made of a material that will no longer need it.

    Now, if I were a betting man...I'd give a sizable edge to 'A'. Given the rapid decline of bowling in the last 40 years...I think thats the logical front-runner. I think 'D' is a distant 2nd...with 'C' not too far behind it in 3rd. I gotta think the technology for 'D' and 'C' already exists...it's just a matter of making it cost effective.
    Last edited by Aslan; 08-12-2021 at 02:12 PM.
    In Bag: (: .) DV8 Grudge Hybrid; (: .) Storm Optimus Solid; (: .) Pyramid Force Pearl; (: .) Brunswick Fortera Exile; (: .) Ebonite Maxim
    USBC#: 8259-59071; USBC Sanctioned Average = 182; Lifetime Average = 171;
    Ball Speed: 15.54mph; Rev. Rate: 240rpm || High Game (sanc.) = 300 (268); High Series (sanc.) = 725 (689); Clean Games: 170

    Smokey this is not 'Nam', this is bowling. There are rules. Proud two-time winner of a bowlingboards.com weekly ball give-away!

  7. #7
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    Think of it this way...usually when I/we show up for practice we have fresh lanes and are often the only one on that lane so even after 4 or 5 games you still don't get the same effect of league night after 2.5 games so essentially you never get to practice in those conditions. When I got there I had no idea they hadn't been oiled but after a few frames realized they were pretty dry. Wasn't till I was done and went up to pay and I mentioned it to the guy at the counter he said they hadn't been oiled since before leagues the night before. I typically do pretty good on fresh and pretty good in the 3rd game. It's that transition I struggle with usually. Last night I had the luxury of trying different things on a burned lane without having to worry about it costing us a game. Was it extreme? No, similar to a 3rd game on league night. But I was focused more on my mechanics and whatever happened happened. Just turns out I adapted pretty well. My form felt good, release felt good, timing felt good, was able to keep my balance at the line which is another thing I struggle with alot. So in my mind it was better than me showing up with a fresh lane. I know how to bowl on fresh. What I need is more practice on dry and processing that transition quicker.
    Arsenal "15# Brunswick Uppercut" "15# Brunswick Igniter" "15# Radical Squatch Pearl" "15# Radical Conspiracy" "15# Brunswick Kingpin" "15# Hammer Black Widow Gold" "15# Brunswick Rhino Black Pearl" "15# Brunswick T-Zone"
    Rev Rate about 325 @ about 16 MPH at the pins* High Game: 279 - High Series: 725
    Oh, and LEFTY!!!
    I am a proud member of bowlingboards.com bowling forums

  8. #8
    Pin Crusher Phonetek's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Aslan View Post
    Again...you're making the case that it's okay to practice shooting free throws at a 7ft basket and kick field goals from the sidelines.

    Why?

    Because; "hey...you're just going through the motions man! You're just trying to get your arc right...just trying to work on your follow-through. It don't matter if the ball goes in the basket or not...it's not about scoring. You're just getting out there and just getting loose."

    And, "who cares where you kick the ball from or if it goes through the uprights? You're just kicking the ball....you don't even need uprights in practice...just "imagine" uprights. It's just practice. It's all about leg extension and footwork and follow-through. You aim for the pole...doesn't matter if you're kicking it from the center of the field or the side of the field."

    See...we can make excuses in every sport for changing conditions in practice and saying, "it doesn't matter...it's just practice." And maybe it doesn't. You want to practice curling by rolling a basketball in a parking lot and running ahead of it with standard brooms...maybe that is the same thing. I dunno. You want to practice your dart game by throwing darts at a board that is 2 feet higher up on the wall? Go ahead. Maybe it won't matter.

    But bowling isn't just about physical ability. FAR FROM IT. I WISH IT WERE. Bowling has become 70% ability and 25% equipment. That MEANS...you can go practice your approach, release, timing, spare shooting...all those physical things. BUT...when you show up on league night...25% of your game is missing.

    And I see this ALL SEASON. Guys with 190-200 averages...guys in the state bowling hall of fame...who have all the physical bowling skills in the world...but they can't explain why their ball isn't doing something or why it is doing something. They make ball changes for odd reasons or no reason at all. They buy bowling balls for color or smell or brand loyalty or because their PSO recommended it because the PSO liked it.

    And those bowlers...they can't work on that 25%...on burnt conditions. They can't. It's not possible. It's not possible to determine where on a lane a ball is going to transition from one phase to another on burnt conditions. It's not possible to determine what board is the best starting board for a given ball that you've never thrown before...or a ball that you're trying at a new surface...on burnt conditions. It's not possible to compare the ball reactions of two balls...to see what the relationship is between two balls in your arsenal.

    And, bowling centers really argue this at their own peril. They are essentially arguing that you don't need to bowl...in order to practice bowling. If you don't need "league conditions, then you don't need "bowling conditions". Why bowl? Why not just "Wii bowl?" Why even do that? Why not just "imagine you're bowling?" Just walk in your living room and go through the motions...just visualize that you're bowling. It's all the same thing. Reality is over-rated.

    Someday in the future...1 of 4 things will cure this (in no order of likelihood):

    a) Bowling will cease to exist.

    b) Physical bowling will give way to video bowling.

    c) Lanes will automatically re-oil prior to the start of someone starting to bowl. (Imagine a robotic oiler that comes out from under the pin deck and cleans/oils the lane surface as the new bowlers enter their names in the scoring computer...then disappears under the pin deck).

    d) There will come a time when oiling will no longer be necessary as lanes will be made of a material that will no longer need it.

    Now, if I were a betting man...I'd give a sizable edge to 'A'. Given the rapid decline of bowling in the last 40 years...I think thats the logical front-runner. I think 'D' is a distant 2nd...with 'C' not too far behind it in 3rd. I gotta think the technology for 'D' and 'C' already exists...it's just a matter of making it cost effective.
    Okay

  9. #9

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    I went to practice for the second time of the summer. The lanes had not been oiled since the day before and some open play on them. Just wanted to make sure my timing and release was good and nothing hurt. Wasn't bowling for score but averaged 220 for 5 games with 3 different balls and only had 2 opens 4-9 split and 7 pin. late in the 5th game. I will be going at least once a week now until the season starts. I felt good and should be good for the season. Steve
    Current arsenal...Roto Grip Nuclear Cell, Hustle PBR, Rubicon UC2 and Own It Spare. 300 rev rate, 16 mph off hand, 13.3 tilt,61 degrees rotation pap 4 9/16 over 1 1/8 up.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Aslan View Post
    Again...you're making the case that it's okay to practice shooting free throws at a 7ft basket and kick field goals from the sidelines.

    ..... Too long to quote, LOL
    OK, I don't agree with the details of your post - but only the details.

    Here's the thing about how I see nearly everyone practice - they bowl. They score. There is no deliberation in their "practice" - it's play, not practice. Practice is deliberate. Play is not.

    And that's the problem.

    Not the lane conditions. Not the height of the basket (did you think that Stephen Curry's hoop when he was growing up and practicing was regulation height? LOL) or the distance between the uprights (or even if they are there - I place kicked in college. We practiced JUST elevation quite a bit. Angle is a LOT of the technique.) - it's the mindset of the bowler.

    *Do you think you would get a strike with a one-step drill? You shouldn't - you can't generate enough ball speed without really screwing up the drill. It's about feel.
    *One of my favorite drills is the dice-game. Roll a 6-sided die - roll a 1, hit the 7. 2, hit the 4. 3, hit the 2 and so on, going left to right. Completely random - you get a "point" for each time you do it (and be honest even if there isn't that pin there) - should be no strikes. (oh, and nothing for the head-pin or 5, 8 or 9) It's a drill to reinforce spares.
    *My father-in-law's favorite is low-ball. First ball, 10 pin; second ball 7. Gutter gets a strike (or spare if it's the second ball)

    *I also like the drill where you use a single ball and bowl to get two strikes from each arrow (within reason) - starting at the first arrow, then second, then third, etc. I can barely loft the gutter and I'm not comfortable with it - but I've gotten a LOT more comfortable between 3rd and 4th arrow. This is harder on a burnt condition, obviously. . . but it's not about SCORE, it's about execution and DELIBERATION.

    All of these are.

    If bowlers would practice with deliberation, with thought, and without worrying about score, they would PRACTICE. Slow down. Post. Balance. Rhythm. Flow. Reach to your target. Did your ball go where you wanted? What happened? Have your partner WATCH so they can provide feedback - video if you have to (and get comfortable with it). If they (and I) would do this, they'd (we'd) get better.


    The problem is not the lanes or lane conditions. It's the mindset of the bowler.



    (btw - we practiced kicking from the center of the field, WAAAY outside my range, because it was muddy and often frozen so very difficult. We didn't practice with a holder, just a T and one of those tripod holders. We also practiced at PAT range for elevation. We practiced from each hash to get "straight" out of our heads - line up to the left, line up to the right. Much of the time we didn't care where the ball went - we cared about form; we cared about footing; we cared about angles. You get that stuff right and the ball's going to go. My problem was distance - I did more punting - I had several second hang time so we could almost always surround the returner as he was catching the ball. . . heh heh heh)


    (btw - I think C is a cool option. We already have robotic lane conditioners (not at my center, unfortunately - OOOOLD machines. . . but at a Bowlero nearby, yep) that require little to no supervision (theoretically) - that could happen. Maybe not 1 per lane but . . . hmmmmmmmm)
    Last edited by boomer; 08-13-2021 at 11:26 AM.

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