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#26678 - 12/01/04 09:40 AM Proper fit
CPAScott Offline
Junior Master

Registered: 02/17/04
Posts: 37
A/S/L: 31/M/near Boston, MA
Hey! Seeking some advice on proper fit. I can't work on improving my game if I don't start first with a ball that's drilled properly for my hand.

My experience is that there are very few quality ball drillers in New England. Every guy I go to looks at the measurements and layout performed by the last guy and says that "he didn't know what he was doing".

I went to a driller on the recommendation of my USABowling Silver Certified coach. He thought my span was too long. "The last guy didn't know what he was doing" he said. He redrilled the ball accordingly, shortened the span, eliminated the oval thumb, and changed the layout.

I was having a little trouble with the ball and thought the pitch might be a bit too reversed. Rather than go back to this guy who is 1 hour away, I stopped in to see the new drilling pro at my local shop who comes with a solid reputation. I asked him to take a quick look. He did a total measurement and said "the last guy didn't know what he was doing". He claimed that my span was too short -- by 11/16 of an inch!

Now I am thoroughly confused. My hand is the same. I swear not one ball driller I've been to agrees what the last guy did -- and each thinks that radical changes are necessary. I don't care about layout -- only hand measurements. I have the same hand. These guys should be similar.

My coach mentioned that there is a new philosophy coming from IBPSA which suggests shorter spans, and perhaps that's the difference of opinion. He's not a driller, but he knows enough about balls to advise. We're going to do a few looks at my ball when I meet him this Saturday.

So, here's the question -- regarding the span -- how can I figure out what the proper span is for me? Where should my knucles be? How much of my palm should be on the ball? Is there a new thought coming from IBPSA on shorter spans?

And, finally, is there any consensus about a solid, reputible drilling pro in eastern New England? How would you go about learning and finding one?

Thanks!
_________________________
Scott

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Legend

Registered: Fri Aug 27 2004
Posts: 10100
A/S/L: Mountain View, CA
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#26679 - 12/01/04 01:28 PM Re: Proper fit
Coachrich Offline
Regional Pro Contender

Registered: 04/03/01
Posts: 569
A/S/L: Chesterland, Ohio
I too struggle with Pro Shop operators that constantly tell my clients I am not giving them the best advice on ball fit.

I faithfully follow the IBPSIA standards.

Why? Good question.

Because I know that a lot of research was done by a lot of very talented people that all agreed on the standard that the IBPSIA teaches. They not only looked at the way a ball fits your hand, but actually studied the structure of the hand, typical injuries from poor fit and problems encountered in deliveries by ill-fitting balls. They also know what to do with the pin, CG and mass bias to fit your delivery style. (Not every ball is drilled 3-3/8 from the PAP just to the side of the ring finger)

From a personal standpoint, I have never had a client complain who I converted from the typical streched fit of a "I been drilling balls for twenty years" Pro Shop operator to the IBPSIA standard. They base forward and reverse pitches off of span length. Changes in performance has been amazing in some cases. I recently told a touring PBA member he had one of the worst fits I've ever seen (massive reverse pitch on the thumb and fingers to make up for a ridiculous stretched span). He went to an IBPSIA shop and was told "the last guy didn't know what he was doing", but this time he was right!

To find your span, draw a line on the palm side of your middle and ring finger halfway between the first and second joints. With your thumb in the ball and the fingers laid over the holes (not IN the finger holes), the line should be on the near-side edge of the opening of the hole or insert. A clueless operator will tell you that fit would be for a semi-finger tip grip. If so, run, don't walk, to the next Pro Shop.

To find a IBPSIA Pro operator, go to their web site (search for it) and click on the IBPSIA Pros tab. Click on the state. Sorry, I got zero hits for MA, NH or RI. Good luck.
_________________________
Rich
http://www.muscle-memory.com/

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#26680 - 12/01/04 01:53 PM Re: Proper fit
Atochabsh Offline
USBC Bronze Coach

Registered: 02/13/01
Posts: 6565
A/S/L: 50/F/California
What we do is go by the crease. But we try to get the last crease just a tad bit over 1/2 across the center of the finger hole when the hand is laid over the finger holes (thumb fully inserted). I think it pretty much comes out to about what CoachRich is saying. But some people have very long fingers, some short, some flexible, some not. A Pro Shop driller should take these things into account. You also check for previous injuries and hand formations. Once your hand is fitted in the ball, you should be able to slide a regular size pencil from the pinkie side of hand through the web side of the thumb. It should slightly drag. That's a very near perfect span.

Thumb pitch (lateral) can also be changed depending on where on the lane you prefer to play. Five board you generally have 1/8th palm. Inside of the lane, 20 board, you'll want 0 or away pitch, to get quicker thumb release. Also giving away pitch (less palm) can assist in eliminating chicken winging problem. And the reverse pitch is guided by your span. Dry thumbs, moist thumbs, short thumbs, round thumbs, oval thumbs which will also determine thumb pitch.

There are basic standards, but since there are so many issues that create proper fit that its tough to get every thing perfect the first time around. Sticking with a Pro Shop is important because they can fine tune your fit, making minor adjustments. For example if you have a short thumb and we gave 1/16th forward. It wasn't quite enough, so next time we gave 1/8th. Its a minor adjustment.

Erin

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#26681 - 12/02/04 03:50 AM Re: Proper fit
Coach04 Offline
Legend

Registered: 04/21/04
Posts: 1000
A/S/L: Male/Texas
That is some very good information from Erin...

One of the problems you run into today is that an old belief system is colliding with new found scientific fact. It was once believed that the span must be streched to provide leverage to the fingers on release. To compensate for the streched span causing a sticking thumb, or difficult exit, reverse pitch was put into the thumb hole. A lot of drillers were taught this method, and refuse to believe or learn anything that differs from it.

Secondly there is too much ego involved with many ball drillers. They believe they are the best in the world, just because they say so.

What Erin is saying about IBPSIA is absolutely true. They are teaching what has been learned from applying physics to the ball and hand, seperating fact from fiction within reasonable scientific certainty.

Outside of this it also takes a caring and careful ball driller to work with you on your personal comfort. This builds a trust and confidence between driller and client, that over time produces great results.

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#26682 - 12/02/04 02:01 PM Re: Proper fit
Coachrich Offline
Regional Pro Contender

Registered: 04/03/01
Posts: 569
A/S/L: Chesterland, Ohio
Erin makes a good point about different hand size, flexibility and I would like to add strength.

When I interview a client to start lessons, I feel it is important to check their fit using the IBPSIA chart for span and pitches. I then look at their hand for skin abnormalities such as calouses, blisters, etc. around those areas typical of a bowler with a fit problem. Then I have them flex their hand and look for unusual stiffness or extraordinary flexibility. Finally I watch them release the ball. All of these factors must be considered when fitting a bowler.

Sadly, I seldom see a driller in my area as thorough as Erin. I'm not saying any driller is deliberate in fitting poorly. I just don't think enough of them keep an open mind to further knowledge of the science of fitting/drilling and a closer relationship with the dedicated and skilled bowlers.

(At this point I step off of the soap box.)
_________________________
Rich
http://www.muscle-memory.com/

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#26683 - 12/02/04 10:27 PM Re: Proper fit
CPAScott Offline
Junior Master

Registered: 02/17/04
Posts: 37
A/S/L: 31/M/near Boston, MA
Excellent ...

Now here's a specific question for you.

Does anyone know or have an opinion about Ray DiSanto, Jr.? He just opened the shop in Boston and was the one who stated my span was too short. He's the son of Ray DiSanto, Sr. who still operates out of Rochester, NY. I believe this father-son team invented the ovalmatic drilling system, although I don't know much about it.

Ray claims to be IBPSIA certifed, but is not listed on their website. Of course, the IBPSIA website doesn't list all people who are certified, just those running pro shops. I'm not actually sure how one gets to be included on the site -- or if the site actually lists all IBPSIA pros or just some.

Anyway, if anyone is familiar with Ray Jr., I'd love to hear some honest feedback.

Thanks,
Scott
_________________________
Scott

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#26684 - 12/03/04 12:41 AM Re: Proper fit
Coach04 Offline
Legend

Registered: 04/21/04
Posts: 1000
A/S/L: Male/Texas
Sorry, but I don't know him.

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#26685 - 07/01/05 03:43 PM Re: Proper fit
rikibear Offline
Bumper Bowler

Registered: 07/01/05
Posts: 3
A/S/L: 38/male/location
dear scott i was reading some archives and found a very familiar name in ray disanto jr i hope at this late date you have gone with your gut and had something drilled by him it is true he invented the ovalmatic drill jig with his father some of his credentials include running the Brunswick booth at abc nationals also drilling for the senior and womens pro tours them were his trucks you would see out in front of the bowling centers he also travels and does ball drilling seminars i havent talked to him since his accident but if you get the chance absorb as much info from him as you can its like sitting in a room with mo pinell

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