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#156683 - 10/19/11 11:25 AM Re: Please help with my awful approach/swing [Re: PowerBall]
mmalsed Offline
Virtual League Champion

Registered: 10/18/10
Posts: 1381
A/S/L: 43/M/Riverside, CA
Honestly, if you're still using a house ball, you're not going to make a whole lot of progress.

You have to actually grip and muscle a house ball which is counter to everything you are trying to learn. If you can get a ball drilled for you, do so quickly, and this will make your learning process much easier.
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#156699 - 10/19/11 02:34 PM Re: Please help with my awful approach/swing [Re: Calvin Pistorio]
JW123 Offline
Team USA Contender

Registered: 05/30/10
Posts: 438
A/S/L: 45/M/NJ
Originally Posted By: Calvin Pistorio
My point was also that JW123 said the shoulders should never be like that, and I pointed out it was wrong to say never.


No, what I was saying is that you should never swivel your shoulders around during the swing the way he was doing it. He was starting square, opening way up during the backswing to the point that the ball was always going behind his back, and then his downswing was sometimes staying open, sometimes closing, sometimes going back to squared, and on one of them (the one it looked like he threw in the right ditch) opening even further. This inconsistency is the number one cause of spraying the ball all over the place, hence my saying his shots are passing the arrows in a 15 board window.

Most of the time, it's best to be open throughout your approach (anytime your target is to the right of your right arm, you should be open). Sometimes, you should be square (good example is if you're playing the rail, you can't open up or your ball will be in the channel right out of your hand), and sometimes you need to be closed a bit (think shooting cross lane at a 7 pin from the far right). I was taught to pre-set my launch angles, and keep the same body orientation--shoulders and hips--throughout my five steps. Learned it from Brian O'Keefe, who is a pretty fair coach I would say.

I mentioned the 6 pin drill because I get the impression that he is fairly new to the game. He shows the traits of a new bowler: using an alley ball and trying to overpower the pins. Step one for him should be learning to relax and free up his swing and roll the ball to and through a target arrow.

In my first league last summer one of the guys is a USBC certified coach. I was struggling and asked him for some advice. He said "Well that shot hit 7, the one before you pulled it and it went over 13, before that you hit 4, I can't help you much right now except that you have to stop muscling the ball, spinning your shoulders, and spraying it all over the place, and let your swing flow so you can hit generally the same target 10 times in a row. Once you get that part of it, I can help you learn something about lining up and lane play."
_________________________
15# Brunswick Anaconda
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14# T Zone

HG: 279 santioned/300 unsanctioned
HS3: 671
HS4: 847

12-13 Averages:
177 full season league
171/175 (both halves short-season)

First "Triple Deucey" 3/28/2012: 226-212-202 for 640.

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#156702 - 10/19/11 02:58 PM Re: Please help with my awful approach/swing [Re: PowerBall]
JW123 Offline
Team USA Contender

Registered: 05/30/10
Posts: 438
A/S/L: 45/M/NJ
Originally Posted By: TidalKnight
can you explain a bit more what you were talking about with the boards? I am not familiar with boards yet in relation to pins or curve..


When we talk about board numbers, it refers to the 39 panels which make up a bowling lane. You don't have to get on a knee and count them, trust me, there are 39.

Since you are a righty, you start counting boards at the right gutter. The board running along the gutter is board 1, the next one 2, and so forth.

There are seven arrows about 15 feet past the foul line, and each arrow is at increments of 5 boards. So the arrow closest to the gutter is the "5 board". The second arrow is the "10 board". That's where I suggested you play for my 6-pin drill because if you follow that board all the way down the lane, it will take you to the 6 pin, and the goal of that drill is to roll the ball straight--if your ball goes diagonally down the lane it means your swing direction is askew--this is not the same as a hook; a hook ball makes a J or U shape, a diagonal ball is just a straight ball thrown at an angle. The third arrow is the 15 board, and the arrow in the middle is the 20 board.

Once you relax your swing and focus on your target, you should be able to roll 20 shots and hit your target (or maybe miss by one board or two at the most) on every one. Then you can get into things like moving to different places on the approach and pre-setting your angles by opening or closing your shoulders in order to change the directional angles of your shots depending on lane conditions. Then you might become a 190-220 bowler. But it all has to start with a free swing, and yes, a properly fitted ball is going to make that 100 times easier than using an alley ball.

And at this point, the score monitor is the LAST thing you should be thinking about. It can only mess you up. You'll roll a good ball and leave a split and kick yourself for it, then throw a garbage ball, hit Brooklyn, have the rack explode and think you did good. Master the swing mechanics first and once you have that down, you can move on to learning how to adjust for what your ball is doing.
_________________________
15# Brunswick Anaconda
15# Ebonite Cyclone
14# T Zone

HG: 279 santioned/300 unsanctioned
HS3: 671
HS4: 847

12-13 Averages:
177 full season league
171/175 (both halves short-season)

First "Triple Deucey" 3/28/2012: 226-212-202 for 640.

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#156703 - 10/19/11 03:05 PM Re: Please help with my awful approach/swing [Re: JW123]
Domokun Offline
Virtual League Champion

Registered: 01/13/09
Posts: 898
A/S/L: male/DC Metro
Originally Posted By: JW123
Step one for him should be learning to relax and free up his swing and roll the ball to and through a target arrow.


Until he gets a ball drilled perfectly for his hand, hopefully with forward pitch in the thumb, he's going to have an awful time working a free swing. Otherwise, he's always going to be gripping the ball, and it's just so difficult to tell a new bowler to relax the arm all while the hand's holding on for dear life what with that bus full of nuns behind him and all</coachJim>.

I'd go with adjusting the timing (ball comes down on the right foot) until that new ball comes in, then free/drop-ball-into-swing. You can do that with really any ball. Or no ball.

Like some others have said, I'm betting the whole swing plane issue will go away with timing and grip adjustments.
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#156706 - 10/19/11 04:24 PM Re: Please help with my awful approach/swing [Re: PowerBall]
metguy Offline
Legend

Registered: 03/12/11
Posts: 1108
A/S/L: 46/m/waverly iowa
Now by no means am i looking to insult anyone but I couldn't help thinking of the great [censored] Weber of the late 50's and early 60's. I was wondering how "relaxed grip" and "free armswing" factored into his game during those early years. Seems to me he turned out pretty darn good. I don't know, maybe he was the inventor of the relaxed grip and free armswing.

While understanding (todays) proper fundamentals is very important, its not critical from a viewpoint that unless those fundamentals are established in your game you can not possibly acheive greatness.

I would think throwing a 14 pound house ball on a THS could play like some of these Pro bowlers on long animal patterns. Its about angle and speed, might want to be accurate also but all those factors can be done with a house ball on that typical house shot (THS). Just don't lose sight in the fact that your natural progression next will be to a ball that is properly fitted and will present the second teir of challenges.

TidalKnight, you are in a great position with where you are as a bowler. Many bowlers wish they could go back to the beginning and start over and do things differently (i know i do). You have the oppertunity to establish a well rounded game through time most of us probably won't be able to acheive simply because we're too stubbornly focused on the present. Learn the straight game with both your strikes and spares through the use of plastic (if you want), keep your opinions open to whats available, and look to improve in all areas as your abilities grow and your options with your arsonal grows.

There's nothing wrong with not understanding how to make use of the arrows or how to make corrections to get your ball to the pocket consistantly. But, until those things are sorted out, it seems i bit much to expect anyone to understand free-armswing and relaxed grip techniques. You'll get it quick enough, but understanding the why's of what your doing and when to do it is so much more important then just knowing how to do it.
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#156714 - 10/19/11 07:26 PM Re: Please help with my awful approach/swing [Re: Domokun]
PowerBall Offline
Bracket Donor

Registered: 10/15/11
Posts: 169
A/S/L: 36/M/Ca
Originally Posted By: Domokun
Originally Posted By: JW123
Step one for him should be learning to relax and free up his swing and roll the ball to and through a target arrow.


Until he gets a ball drilled perfectly for his hand, hopefully with forward pitch in the thumb, he's going to have an awful time working a free swing. Otherwise, he's always going to be gripping the ball, and it's just so difficult to tell a new bowler to relax the arm all while the hand's holding on for dear life what with that bus full of nuns behind him and all</coachJim>.

I'd go with adjusting the timing (ball comes down on the right foot) until that new ball comes in, then free/drop-ball-into-swing. You can do that with really any ball. Or no ball.

Like some others have said, I'm betting the whole swing plane issue will go away with timing and grip adjustments.


My ball is coming friday (can't come soon enough), and because our UPS guy likes to come at 10 at night I will get it drilled saturday with fingertip grip. Should I mention forward pitch?

I've never used a custom bowling ball... does the ball literally stay on your hand or do you have to hold it a little? cuz I don't want to drop it in the backswing or throw it at someone..

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#156717 - 10/19/11 07:52 PM Re: Please help with my awful approach/swing [Re: JW123]
Calvin Pistorio Offline
State Champion Contender

Registered: 02/19/07
Posts: 6283
A/S/L: 32/m/maryland
Originally Posted By: JW123
Originally Posted By: Calvin Pistorio
My point was also that JW123 said the shoulders should never be like that, and I pointed out it was wrong to say never.


No, what I was saying is that you should never swivel your shoulders around during the swing the way he was doing it. He was starting square, opening way up during the backswing to the point that the ball was always going behind his back, and then his downswing was sometimes staying open, sometimes closing, sometimes going back to squared, and on one of them (the one it looked like he threw in the right ditch) opening even further. This inconsistency is the number one cause of spraying the ball all over the place, hence my saying his shots are passing the arrows in a 15 board window.

Most of the time, it's best to be open throughout your approach (anytime your target is to the right of your right arm, you should be open). Sometimes, you should be square (good example is if you're playing the rail, you can't open up or your ball will be in the channel right out of your hand), and sometimes you need to be closed a bit (think shooting cross lane at a 7 pin from the far right). I was taught to pre-set my launch angles, and keep the same body orientation--shoulders and hips--throughout my five steps. Learned it from Brian O'Keefe, who is a pretty fair coach I would say.

I mentioned the 6 pin drill because I get the impression that he is fairly new to the game. He shows the traits of a new bowler: using an alley ball and trying to overpower the pins. Step one for him should be learning to relax and free up his swing and roll the ball to and through a target arrow.



You actually said the shoulders should never be open like that during the approach, and even when playing the rail you can open your shoulders up as long as you close them back up going into the release point as you do any other time. Your shoulders and body should always end up squared with your target line. Sure your body should be angled to line up with your target line but you can open up the shoulders during the approach and still keep that launch angle. I agree his finishing angle, and his finishing spot on the approach is all over the place.

Still in order to learn a free swing he needs to get a ball drilled for him, like it's been said gripping the ball is counter-productive to that. It's still going to be a lot of work to get the swing free and the swing plane straight. It's hard for most to get past that little voice in their head that says they have to control it.
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#156771 - 10/20/11 07:59 PM Re: Please help with my awful approach/swing [Re: PowerBall]
Domokun Offline
Virtual League Champion

Registered: 01/13/09
Posts: 898
A/S/L: male/DC Metro
Originally Posted By: TidalKnight
My ball is coming friday (can't come soon enough), and because our UPS guy likes to come at 10 at night I will get it drilled saturday with fingertip grip. Should I mention forward pitch?

I've never used a custom bowling ball... does the ball literally stay on your hand or do you have to hold it a little? cuz I don't want to drop it in the backswing or throw it at someone..


Awesome you're getting it on the weekend which only means more playtime with it. Hopefully, this Pro Shop is actually at your preferred center.

Anyway, CoachJim says "Would you rather palm a basketball or a baseball?"

If you can palm a basketball, then a stretched span and reverse pitch is great. There's a few guys here who can because they have Gumby hands so this layout is perfect for them. If you're one of them, then don't read further. If you'd rather palm a baseball, then keep reading.

For the life of me I cannot find CoachJim's basic span and pitch post--there's a million posts floating around, but I can give you this link for the exact same info: Ron Clifton Ball Fit (To answer your question directly: Forward pitch = ball hang on you vs. reverse pitch = you hang on ball.)

Clifton's got another article where he talks about the inexact science of this, and I can testify to spending inordinate amounts of time messing around with my thumbhole's pitch--it's 1/2" forward now, whirlpool of bevel, vent hole*. But, since you're new, this'll go much easier for you. You just want a free swing and it's best done with forward pitch. There, I said it.

Print out that page from Clifton and take it with you. The driller'll know what you're talking about, but if he or she won't do it...hmmm...get another driller. Sayin'.

Bevel or not to bevel. Up to you. Some like it sharp. Some like it soft. If the shop is in the center, leave the thumb insert as is and go throw it and see what happens. Bad things happen? No problem. Driller will fix to your comfort. Same thing with the thumb insert snugness. You won't know til you get there.

This'll take awhile, but trust me, it'll pay off right now as opposed to money and time (and remote chance of injury) spent down the road.

*Full disclose: This process got a lot more efficient when I teamed up with my ball driller on a sport shot league. He'd see a ball hang up/fall back on my thumb, and he'd pull it off the rack and put it in his car for fixin' the next day. Luxury.

Have fun!
_________________________
HG: 300 | HS: 768

Ebonite: Challenge, Exceed, Innovate
Storm/RG: Cell Pearl, Tropical Breeze

"Only NBC or CBS for me. New Ball Carry or Clean Ball Strikes. Channel 4 and 14 or nothing." -- D. Ryan

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