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#20205 - 05/03/05 10:39 AM Bowling with Parkinson's Disease
larsonjean Offline
Bumper Bowler

Registered: 08/16/03
Posts: 8
A/S/L: 67/F/FL
Hi,

My husband has bowled for many years with an average of approx. 170 to 175 average. He has developed Parkinson's disease within the last 3 years.

Thank goodness, he is still able to bowl but his average has dropped significantly down to 140. I'm sure he is still trying to bowl the same style he did when he was healthy and I don't think it is working.

Any suggestions to help improve his game would be appreciated. I now have a higher average then him (154) and although I'm glad he is still able to bowl I know that if he was able to bowl better he would be more eager to go to the lanes.

With Parkinson's the person's walk is much slower, he is stiffer and can bend easily. He doesn't have much palsy so that is not the problem.

Thanks for your help.

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Legend

Registered: Fri Aug 27 2004
Posts: 10100
A/S/L: Mountain View, CA
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#20206 - 05/03/05 12:13 PM Re: Bowling with Parkinson's Disease
Coachrich Offline
Regional Pro Contender

Registered: 04/03/01
Posts: 569
A/S/L: Chesterland, Ohio
Larsonjean,

First...encouragement.

I videotaped a bowler that suffered a back injury and cannot perform a four step approach. He stands about a step and a half from the foul line, swings the ball to get it started and when the swing is shoulder high, he steps into the finish. The USABC Coaching program refers to this as the "swing and slide" delivery.

He bowled a 300.

Of course, the expectation is not get your husband a 300 ring. Just let him know that it doesn't take a traditional approach to experience success in bowling. That's why this is such a great sport.

When you say that he can bend easily. Does that mean he can finish with his ball-side leg to the opposite side and bend his sliding leg at the knee? This would help him maintain balance at the line no matter how he got there.

The most important advice I can give is to let the ball swing his arm. He should not push the ball onto the lane. He just needs to get it started into a loose swing, then step forward as the ball is coming out of the backswing.

The swing can be started from the waist and pushed forward, pushed forward and back starting from the ball hanging at the side or a gradually elevated swing.

With a focus on a free armswing and the final step as the ball is falling forward out of the swing, he can take five, four, three, two or one step to get to the finish

Throughout the armswing, he must stay focused on the target, but most importanatly, he must try not to push the ball to that target. With his eyes on the target and the loose armswing in the direction of that target, the ball should end up close to where he wants it to travel.

Please let me know if this helps,
_________________________
Rich
http://www.muscle-memory.com/

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#20207 - 05/03/05 12:19 PM Re: Bowling with Parkinson's Disease
Atochabsh Offline
USBC Bronze Coach

Registered: 02/13/01
Posts: 6567
A/S/L: 50/F/California
It could be the fit of the ball and the amount of hand strength he has now. You should encourage him to have his fit re evaluated by the Pro Shop. You can also have more finger holes drilled into the ball if its hard for him to hang onto or control. You could even have 4 finger holes and 1 thumb hole if you wanted. Also if this ball is the same old ball he's always had, I'm sure his grip has changed. If his ball speed has dropped then you may need to have the ball polished or maybe even rejuvenate him with a new lower weight low hooking pearl ball.

There's also no rule about how many steps or where on the approach you have to start. If he's unsteady going from the ball return to the foul line, then a 3 step or even one step approach can be worked on. If he's taking the same approach he's always had, but now his steps are shorter, then he's reaching all the time to get to the foul line, and probably ending up short. Simply moving up on the approach and relaxing the length of his steps may help too.

Helen Duvall had a son who was handicapped. He bowled with one step approach and he was PBA.

Erin

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#20208 - 05/03/05 04:08 PM Re: Bowling with Parkinson's Disease
larsonjean Offline
Bumper Bowler

Registered: 08/16/03
Posts: 8
A/S/L: 67/F/FL
Thanks for your help. I will pass the information on to my husband.

I made a mistake when I said that he can bend easily, it should have said "He can't bend easily." This may be part of his problem.

Also last year he did get a new lighter ball so it should fit properly. He doesn't use his old ball much as it is much heavier.

Thanks for all the help.

Jean

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#20209 - 05/03/05 05:49 PM Re: Bowling with Parkinson's Disease
Atochabsh Offline
USBC Bronze Coach

Registered: 02/13/01
Posts: 6567
A/S/L: 50/F/California
If he cannot bend easily, then he probably doesn't have a very high back swing either. This then can cause people to "push" the ball onto the lane after the ball reaches the bottom of the swing. This would go hand in hand with what CoachRich was talking about concerning a free/loose arm swing. If he can better his backswing then just thinking about letting the ball move by gravity to where it wants to go in the back swing seems to help promote a free-er arm swing for me.

Erin

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#20210 - 05/04/05 09:47 AM Re: Bowling with Parkinson's Disease
Darrell Offline
High Roller

Registered: 01/25/05
Posts: 319
A/S/L: 46 Male Michigan
</font><blockquote><font size="1" face="VERDANA,ARIAL,HELVETICA,TAHOMA">quote:</font><hr /><font size="2" face="VERDANA,ARIAL,HELVETICA,TAHOMA">Originally posted by Coachrich:
Larsonjean, First...encouragement.
I videotaped a bowler that suffered a back injury and cannot perform a four step approach. He stands about a step and a half from the foul line, swings the ball to get it started and when the swing is shoulder high, he steps into the finish. The USABC Coaching program refers to this as the "swing and slide" delivery... Just let him know that it doesn't take a traditional approach to experience success in bowling. That's why this is such a great sport.
</font><hr /></blockquote><font size="2" face="VERDANA,ARIAL,HELVETICA,TAHOMA">Larsenjean, I would like to thank you for sharing this very courageous life experience with us on this forum. You and your husband obviously has drive and a passion for the sport of bowling that we all can learn from.

Coachrich and Erin have given very sage advice, that I am sure that you and your husband will benefit from.

At the lanes where I bowl there is a Friday morning league where physically challenged bowlers bowl. They have lineage on 16 lanes. There are blind bowlers, bowlers that have other challenges including Parkinson's. They enjoy themselves so much. There are new bowlers and veterans of the sport, the veterans have such wonderful stories of bowling in bygone days. They are happy to still be able to enjoy the sport.
_________________________
Darrell "D Man"

--------------------
May all your corner pins fall

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#20211 - 05/04/05 02:00 PM Re: Bowling with Parkinson's Disease
larsonjean Offline
Bumper Bowler

Registered: 08/16/03
Posts: 8
A/S/L: 67/F/FL
Hi Darrell and Friends,
I also want to thank you for the information you have given me. I have passed it on to my husband and hopefully after reading the information and trying the tips he will do better and not be so frustrated.

We do love bowling and he also loves Golf (naturally, his golf game has diminished a lot).

It is extremely hard to see a once very active man who loved to do woodworking other than his normal job as an Electrical Engineer lose many of his capabilities.

I think he is trying to keep his spirits up by continuing to be active in his sports but I know without him saying that he is very depressed about it.

Thank to all for your words of encouragement and I'll try to write back in awhile to let you know if he does a little better. We bowl tonight again.

Jean

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#20212 - 05/04/05 07:31 PM Re: Bowling with Parkinson's Disease
Coachrich Offline
Regional Pro Contender

Registered: 04/03/01
Posts: 569
A/S/L: Chesterland, Ohio
Larsonjean,

Do you live anywhere near Orlando or Daytona?
_________________________
Rich
http://www.muscle-memory.com/

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#20213 - 05/05/05 06:23 PM Re: Bowling with Parkinson's Disease
larsonjean Offline
Bumper Bowler

Registered: 08/16/03
Posts: 8
A/S/L: 67/F/FL
No, Rich, I don't live near Orlando, I live North of Tampa but thanks for posting. I looked at your website and it is very interesting.

Jean

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