Keep in mind, I am a feel bowler and I was by myself so I don't have any video of my practice. All I have are how the swings felt over the course of 2 hours of methodical practice, evaluation, and experimentation.
So there were some things that I wanted to work on in practice today are as follows:
I wanted to stop this kind of gradual rising of the the ball in my stance. Work on a slow and relaxed approach as rushing hurts the scores and consistency of the approach and technique. Adjust hand position and position of ball in my stance to minimize the strain on my arm. Trying to let the spare ball roll off of my hand and keep my torso pointed at the pins.
What I was able to discern from my practice session today was quite helpful as well.
The first thing that I noticed was that I had been overcupping the ball in my stance. This lead to a lot of extra strain on my arm and since I tend to let the ball cup up in the peak of my backswing anyways, this was causing many unnecessary problems and issues, particularly with my release and keeping the ball in the swing plane. I was swinging the ball all over the place, because I couldn't get the transition of the ball weight correct, nor my pushaway in time. Additionally, I was turning the ball outward at the peak of my swing and was way too far inside the ball on the downswing. So I flattened out my wrist a great deal
and it was quite comfortable and allowed for a lot of relaxed swings. I am by no means saying that it is fixed because the ball still thuds some on the lanes, but it is a small fix that had some big results.
The second and third things I noticed are a bit related. I noticed that I have occasionally been losing sight of my target. This lead me to believe that I was moving my head too much in the course of my approach. This is mostly because I have a habit of bending too much at the waist or getting far too low to the ground with my legs. I lose sight of my target because I make this large upward movement for the release and downswing and that causes me to lose sight of where I am aiming. And when I do see where I am aiming clearly, the ball is anywhere between 2-5 board to the right about 80% of the time. This is because, for me, being too low does not allow proper hip and/or shoulder rotation. This causes me to pull the ball through the swing to catch up for some reason before my shoulders can get back around, the ball follows my shoulders as they are pointed at the lane to the right of me. To correct that, I attempted to find a good place to keep my head, as well as, try to keep my torso point towards the pins instead of towards the floor. It is a bit harder than I thought to break some of these habits though.
The 4th thing I noticed was more of an endurance thing. I didn't roll many strikes today (mind you that was not the objective today anyways). So I rolled two balls for a lot of frames today. Regardless, I noticed that the more tired I got, the more I tend to bend over at the waist and pull the ball through the swing more. This causes some pulled shots and wide shots. But it had two other interesting effects. The timing inevitably made the pushaway become out of sync with the rest of my swing, usually making it late. And it doesn't allow me the proper amount of time to get inside the ball and apply the correct amount of leverage. So by taking a little more time and relaxing, I was able have much better swing and much stronger release in games four and five.
The footwork on my first shots were pretty solid. Once I was able to have a more relaxed and smooth swing, the steps were pretty on course. And for a majority of my shots I ended up on the same board that I started on. I didn't drift too far to the left or the right. The spare shots were another matter though. And that is because I roll a plastic spare ball at everything just about every leave. So I have to be really accurate. I noticed that I had been pulling a lot of shots particularly left side spare leaves, which is rather weird for me. I thought perhaps it was a bit too much of an angular approach to the spare and in some cases it was. However, I think it had something to do with my shoulders as well. See I typically bowl with a dropped shoulder. This is ok when going for right side spares, and playing a pretty straight line, which I do. However, when I have to go at an angle from right to left in can cause some issues, like pulling the ball or missing to the right because I was pulling the ball through the swing. So I figured why not use an old trick to see if that helps out any. I moved my right foot in front of my left one. That tends to close up the shoulders. So with my more relaxed swing I was able to hit a lot spares that I had been missing. And hit a lot of the ones on the left that I had been missing. I am still having trouble with double woods. And for some reason I can only hit the 3, 9, and 10 pins with an open shoulder. I don't know why but I will have to work on those to get them down pat. I have always had trouble with the 3 pin though. Mostly because it sucks when you chop the 3-6-10. So perhaps that is a mental obstacle that I have to overcome.
Anyways, those are just a few things that I noticed I was doing today. And some were corrections to some of things that I had been working on. Well thanks for reading all that.
The Demolition Man