I want to address one of the most common mistakes facing most bowlers. Fast feet is a huge problem that most bowlers deal with, fast feet is when your feet are ahead of the swing during or at the end of the approach. When bowlers are facing fast feet they are generally slightly off balance and are turned sideways by the end of the approach.
Fast feet also cause mistakes in other areas of the bowler’s game, such as dropping the shoulders, the inability to stay down with the shot and maintain balance at the foul line once the ball is gone, and inconsistent release.
These are some ways you can solve the fast feet plague, oops I meant problem.
The big mistake: Poor ball placement
Listen closely when I say good ball placement is absolutely necessary, fast feet is related to poor placement of the key step. Another mistake is pushing the ball upwards from a waist high position.
How to fix it: When the heel of your foot touches the floor during the step, try to time your ball placement.
The big mistake: Shoulders too far forward
When your shoulders are too far forward it causes too much bend at the waist and not enough bend at the knees which results in the ball reaching the lane way too early, leading to loss of leverage and an unbalanced feeling during the approach.
How to fix it: Shoulders need to be upright and your knees should be a bit flexed. As you begin your approach, your knees should gradually deepen their bend (not too far though) and your waist should be slightly bent forward.
General rule of thumb: The deeper the knee bend the less the waist needs to be bent forward.
The big mistake: Steps too long
When you take your steps, they’re each as slow as molasses (I was kidding, I hope they’re not that slow). Holding your steps too long result in your swing floating through the approach which means you won’t get any power behind the ball.
General rule of thumb: If you’re taking a five step approach, the second step is crucial so you must definitely watch the length of that step.
How to fix it: Since I’m playing the role of the bowling mechanic in this section I want to help you fix this problem. Take a normal walking step and all the other steps will fall in place, during the five step approach, the first step is for the momentum and it’s usually shorter than a normal key step.
The big mistake: Walking on your toes
This is a very common problem, I throw a chair every time I see somebody walking on their toes during the approach, well maybe I don’t get that upset, but I think you get the point. When you walk on your toes you have too much speed in the approach, your shoulders will be too far forward and you’ll lose lots of leverage.
How to fix it: To avoid walking on your toes, place the heel first and the toes last in each step, this results in a much more smooth approach. When walking in this way you can slow down the entire approach.
General rule of thumb: Since you build momentum from the back to the front movement of your feet, your leverage will also increase.
The big mistake: Muscled arm swing
Most bowlers I deal with think that having their muscles all flexed up during the swing will give them more power when releasing the ball. I am here to tell you that flexing your arms during the arm swing will not increase your throwing ability but it’ll probably win you a body building contest or an arm wrestling contest if you’re lucky. A muscled arm swing can also lead to injury such as pain in your arm, shoulder or wrist.
How to fix it: When you swing the ball, it needs to come from the shoulder with a minimal amount of muscle flexing. If this seems difficult, practice on relaxing your arm and just swing it back and forth without a ball in your hand. Your goal here is to get the arm as relaxed as possible. Doing this allows the weight of the ball to direct the swing throughout the approach.
Well there you have it folks, the most common mistakes facing most bowlers who always wonder why they can’t consistently throw a strike or why their game won’t improve. My mechanic shop has just given you the fix – it’s to go out and bowl the right way.