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Welcome to Pinboy's Guide To Better Bowling. This page is intended to be a guide for beginning and casual bowlers interested in improving their game. To explain how to throw a perfect hook or pick up difficult spares is beyond the scope of this site. However, there are many common mistakes that once corrected will improve your scores almost right away. You'll find articles on bowling fundamentals, safety, courtesy, history, trivia as well as links to some of the best bowling sites on the World Wide Web.
What's So Great About Bowling?
Well, a lot of things-- almost anyone can do it, you can do it almost anytime, bowling isn't weather dependent, it's cheaper than most sports (yes it is a sport), it's a great way to make friends and best of all, it's fun! If you're a bowler, you're in very good company. Bowlers are among the most affluent and intelligent people on the planet.

Did you know that:
  • There are approximately 50 million bowlers in America.
  • 33% are adult women, 32% are adult men, and the rest are young folks.
  • 6 million are real serious and compete in leagues.
  • The average age is 28 years.
  • 43% are business executives, managers or professionals.
  • 60% went to college.
  • The average household income is $38,400.
  • 76% are married.
  • 75% own their own home.
  • Bowlers have an average IQ of 129.
Now, Let's Get Right To It...
There are a few basic things that will make bowling easier and more enjoyable for you and your fellow bowlers. Believe it or not, these things will make you a better bowler almost immediately!
1. Own Your Own Equipment:
BagIf you're serious about improving your game but don't have your own ball and shoes, you're in for a long frustrating haul. Even then, you probably won't ever achieve any level of consistency. A ball that's custom fit to your hand will feel lighter and be much easier to control. Many bowling centers have a pro shop where you can buy excellent quality equipment. If your center doesn't have one, they can tell you where to go. The minimum you need is a ball, bag, towel and shoes. Of course there are all kinds of gizmos and gadgets that are helpful, but those things can come later. The folks in the shop will help you pick out the equipment that's right for you. Check out the Bowlers Dream Online Pro Shop for an idea of what's available. Great deals and selection can be had by shopping online, but nothing beats the personal attention and advice you'll get from your local Pro Shop.
2. Choosing The Right Ball(s):
BallNot all bowling balls are created equal. Today's balls range from mild firecrackers to highly explosive bombs. Most better bowlers carry at least three different balls-- one with high hook potential, one with medium hook potential, and one with little or no hook potential. It's important to realize that even the most potentially hooking ball WILL NOT automatically hook by itself. YOU make it hook! That's why it's a good idea to develop a consistent proper "release" before investing in a variety of bowling balls. Generally, the lane condition will dictate what ball is required: heavy oil calls for maximum hooking potential; medium oil calls for medium hooking potential; and dry lanes require very little hook potential. For example: if your bowling on really dry lanes with a ball with high hook potential, the ball will most likely "take off" in its hooking pattern shortly after hitting the lane. Conversely, if you're bowling on heavy oil, a low hooking ball will just keep sliding down the lane. Both resulting in lower scores. If you want to carry only one ball, one with medium hook potential might be the way to go. If you want to carry two balls, get one at each end of the spectrum. The weight of the ball also has a lot to do with it. Too heavy or too light may be hard to control during the approach. Don't let your ego prevent you from bowling your best by insisting on using the heaviest ball (16lb). Some of the best men bowlers I know use 14 and 15lb equipment. My average went up ten pins when I switched from 16 to 15lbs. I should have changed sooner... For help in choosing your bowling balls, see your local Pro Shop operator. To read what bowlers are saying about the latest equipment, visit BallReviews.com.or BowlingBallReviews.com
3. Take Proper Care of Your Equipment:
Now that you've spent a small fortune on your new bowling gear, the last thing you want to do is ruin it. Avoid leaving your ball in the car or garage for extended periods of time. Bowling balls have been known to crack or even melt from exposure to extreme conditions. A good rule of thumb is to not leave it anywhere you wouldn't want to sleep. Also, keep your ball clean. It will reward you with steady progress. What you use to clean it with will depend on the kind of ball you have. Your pro shop or bowling center will have what you need.

Don't wear your bowling shoes anywhere but inside the bowling center. Be careful where you walk and avoid stepping in spilled soda or popcorn crumbs. The idea is to keep all foreign substances off the bottoms of your shoes, especially the pad on the sliding shoe (left shoe for right handed bowlers, right shoe for left handers). Should you happen to step in something, use your towel or a small wire brush to remove it. Many bowlers use special slip-on shoe covers during trips to the restroom and snack bar for protection.
4. Dress for Success
Dressing for bowling is easy. The only specialized attire required are shoes (most bowling centers won't let you bowl without them). The two most common brands are Linds and Dexter. You probably have everything else already hanging in the closet. Comfortable fitting jeans, chinos, shorts and short sleeve cotton shirts are best. Overly tight or baggy clothes can restrict movement. Some tournaments and clubs actually have dress codes prohibiting t-shirts, shorts or jeans. So if your goal is to take your bowling to a higher level, it wouldn't hurt to get used to wearing polo shirts and chinos while bowling. If you're into the retro thing, check out the links at left for cool vintage bowling shirts.
5. Bowling Courtesy
Bowling centers can be busy places at times. On any given day you might have a child's birthday party on your right and a seasoned pro practicing on your left. With all the activity, a little common courtesy will make things more enjoyable for everyone. Here's a list of pointers:
  • Keep your stuff off the seats and out of the way: your fellow players need a place to sit and don't want to trip over your sneakers on the way to the approach.

  • Keep quiet around the settee area: loud noises will distract other bowlers.

  • Don't bring food or drinks on the approach: if something spills, everything stops and out come the mops.

  • Be ready when it's your turn: you don't want to upset the flow of the game.

  • Don't go on the approach until it's your turn: avoid traffic jams.

  • Yield to the bowler on your immediate left or right if they are ready to bowl (one lane courtesy): don't even go near the ball return if the person on either side of you is bowling or getting ready to bowl. Stay behind the scoring console until the coast is clear. Some leagues and tournaments requier two lane courtesy!

  • Don't stand next to the ball return while waiting for your second ball: this could distract a bowler setting up next to you.

  • A bowler shooting a spare has the right of way over a bowler with a full rack: spare shooters need extra time to concentrate.

  • Don't waste time on the approach: get up there and go! Keeps the flow of the game going.

  • Don't "loft" the ball: lofting is when you hurl the ball 20 feet forward before it lands on the lane. This can dent the lane and rattle teeth. You want to roll the ball, not throw it.

  • Don't roll your second ball until the first has returned: the ball return mechanism is expensive- you don't want to wreck it.

  • Don't linger at the foul line after your delivery: maintain the flow! Plus, there may be a bowler on the next lane politely waiting.

  • Don't use another person's ball without their permission: this is very irritating!

  • Control yourself and be a good sport: don't rant and rave or be a crybaby if you're having a bad game. It will effect everyone's mood.

  • Show enthusiasm when others do well: give a little and you'll get a little. Have fun!
6. Bowling Safety:

Here's are a list of safety tips that will actually help develop consistency in your game:

  • Never bowl cold. Always warm-up with a few body stretches before bowling. It will help you relaxe and prevent pulled muscles. Click here for a simple warm-up routine...

  • Make sure your shoes are clean and dry before stepping onto the approach: get into the habit of checking the bottoms of your shoes for foreign substances before getting up to take your turn. Especially the sliding shoe (opposite of your bowling hand). It's amazing how even the smallest crumb or spot of moisture can cause you to stick or slip at the foul line. I once went flying head first down the lane because I had a candy wrapper stuck to the bottom of my left shoe. Use a towel to wipe off moisture or small particles, and a wire brush for ground-in goop. If you find a sticky spot on the floor somewhere, be sure to report it to someone in the bowling center.

  • If you're sticking at the line: there is something called "Easy Slide." It's a little bag of powder that is meant to be used on the bottom of the sliding shoe (also on the thumb). Be very careful not to put too much on as the excess will come off on the approach and may cause other bowlers to slip. If you need Easy Slide, remember, "a little dab will do ya." Be sure to completely rub it in leaving no loose powder on the pad.

  • Don't pick up the ball with just one hand: save your wrists and back! This is a common mistake made by many bowlers. Besides not injuring yourself, you want to look like you know what you're doing, even if you don't. Here's how to properly remove the ball from the return mechanism:

    Stand in front of the ball return, bend your knees and pick up the ball with BOTH hands. Be careful not to slide your hands between your ball and someone else's or you might smash your fingers. Cradle the ball in your non-bowling arm and walk to your starting position. After getting your feet in place, insert your fingers (fingers first, thumb last).
7. The Pre-Shot Routine:
A consistent pre-shot routine is one of the most overlooked aspects of bowling. The next time you're watching a basketball game on TV, watch what the players do when getting ready for a free-throw. Each player has his own pre-shot routine, and they do it exactly the same way every time! A consistent pre-shot routine will not only keep you relaxed and focused, it will help ensure safety and proper performance of your equipment. No two routines will be the same but any pre-shot routine might include the following (not necessarily in this order):
  • When it's your turn to bowl, BE THERE and BE READY! You can't keep your mind on your game if you're running around the bowling center between frames. Plus, some bowlers get very irritated when people aren't ready.

  • Make sure your bowling hand is bone dry. This helps ensure a clean release. Use a towel, rosin bag, or the air blower on the ball return to remove moisture.

  • Check the bottom of your sliding shoe for moisture or foreign objects. You want to knock the pins over with the BALL, not your HEAD! I always give the bottom of my shoe a swipe with a towel before every frame.

  • Correctly remove your ball from the ball return (see above).

  • Wipe your ball thoroughly with a towel to remove any dirt or lane oil. This will help the ball grab the lane and do its thing. As well as help to prevent carrydown (see "the language of bowling" below).

  • Take a deep breath and exhale before beginning your approach. Relax!
8. Practice:
It always amazes me how little most bowlers practice. Even those who consider themselves "serious." My belief is that you should practice at least twice as much as you compete. Meaning that if you bowl in a league one night a week, you should practice six games that same week. Most bowling centers have special discounts for league bowlers and bowling "happy hours" when the price per game is $1.50 or less.

There are two basic ways to practice: actual games with friends, and focused solo sessions where you work on various aspects of your game. Both are beneficial. Here are some practice tips:
  • When bowling alone, don't keep score. The scoreboard can be the most distracting thing. Don't worry, once the lanes are "on" the automatic mechanism will keep track of how many frames you've bowled. Just go out there and roll frame after frame. This is the best way to improve spare shooting because the pressure is off and you can experiment with different angles.

  • Concentrate on one thing at a time. For example, if you're having trouble executing a consistent "follow through", just work on that for a while and forget everything else. Then move on to something different.

  • If you get frustrated, STOP and come back later. Otherwise you might develop bad habits.

  • Make friends with some of the better bowlers in your center and get them to take you under their wing. These folks usually keep regular practice schedules. See if they'll let you join them. You'll be surprised at how bowling with "the big boys" improves your game.

  • Pace yourself. During league play, you could be bowling with as many as nine other bowlers on the same pair of lanes. Even though you're crisscrossing, you usually have to wait a few minutes between frames. It's a good idea to maintain a similar pace during practice.

  • Bowl in more than one house if possible. No two bowling centers are the same! A friend of mine has a saying, "bowling in only one house does not a good bowler make." Everyone has their favorite house, and that's OK, but if you want to really improve your game and maybe compete in tournaments, it's a good idea to learn to adapt to different oil patterns and lanes. Many cities have tournament clubs that rotate from house to house every week. If you can afford it (usually around $40 per entry), join up and compete at least once a month just for the experience. Whether you join the tournament club or just move from house to house for practice or league play, you'll be surprised at how this will improve your game.

  • When practicing one-on-one with a friend with the scoring mechanism turned on, put something "on the line"-- a dollar per game, or high series gets you lunch or something. This helps sharpen your competitive edge and makes things more interesting and fun.
9. League and Tournament Play:
So what is all this practice and preparation for? COMPETITION! Yes, you can actually earn money bowling. Not to mention the personal satisfaction you'll get from bowling well and taking your team over the top in a tight game. As mentioned earlier, hours of practice ARE necessary to succeed, but it all comes together during competition. Here are some pointers that will make league and tournament play more rewarding:
  • Give yourself time to do an equipment check prior to leaving for the Bowling Center. Make sure everything is there and in good condition. Do any maintenance BEFORE you leave as you may not have the opportunity once you arrive at the site. Plus, you don't want to get there and find out you've left your lucky towel or wrist brace at home.

  • Arrive at the Bowling Center well in advance of start time. This allows you time to relax and get comfortable with the staff and the Center's vibe. Most importantly, it gives your fingers and thumb time to shrink or swell to their natural size based on the atmosphere of the Bowling Center.

  • Prior to start time, make sure that EVERY BALL in your bag fits your hand. Add or remove bowling tape as necessary. You want to minimize the distraction of a poor fit if you have to make a sudden ball change.

  • Look sharp and be friendly. Nobody likes a slob or a snob. Chat with the center staff and other bowlers while you're getting used to the environment. This will help you to relax and who knows, you might even learn something or make a new friend.

  • When pre-game practice time arrives, be ready! These precious few minutes can make or break your series. The two most important things are to find the strike line and the 10 pin line (7 pin for left handers). Then, if you have time, the solid Brooklyn shot. If you can find these three, you should be able to adjust to whatever else happens.

  • Lastly, during play, keep your head on straight and stay focused. If things aren't going your way, don't loose it! An even temperament will go a long way towards breaking out of a slump. Try to find another bowler in the tournament with a similar style as yours who is doing well. Watch what they're doing and try it. You never know!
10. Talk the Talk- the Language of Bowling:
As in every sport, Bowling has a language of its own. The tough part is that it's not the same in all localities! The following is glossary of terms that should get you through any conversation at your local center.
Action: Movement imparted to the ball by the fingers at the point of release.

Anchor man: The last bowler in a team.

Angle: Direction taken by the ball as it enters the 1-3 (1-2 for left-handers) pocket.

Arrows: A series of seven arrow markers 14 1/2 to 15 1/2 feet past the foul line that are placed every fifth board across the lane to serve as aiming points.

Baby strike: Pins left after the first shot containing a pocket similar to the 1-3 pocket in a full rack.

Back-end: The part of the lane between the second set of arrows and the pin deck.

Back-up ball: A reverse hook.

Ball track: The part of the ball that comes in contact with the lane as it rolls down the alley. (See Spinner, Semiroller, and Full roller.)

Blocked lane: A high-scoring condition when the boards closest to the channels have very little lane conditioner and there is a heavy oil buildup on the center boards which helps to keep shots in the pocket.

Boards: The 39 strips of wood that extend from the start of the approach to the pins. They are used as both a starting and an aiming point by players.

Break of the boards: Point approximately 16 feet out from the foul line just beyond the arrows.

Brooklyn: A ball thrown into the 1-2 (1-3 for left-handers) pocket.

Carrydown: The movement of lane conditioner (caused by a succession of shots) from beyond where the oil was applied toward the pins. Carrydown decreases the ball's hooking on the backbend.

Channel: The gutter on each side of the lane.

Cherry: A pin left when a pin in front is knocked down, or chopped; when this happens, you've "picked a cherry."

Chinaman: The third bowler in a team.

Chop: To hit a front pin and leave one or more behind it.

Conditioner: See Oil.

Conventional grip: Placing your fingers into the ball up to the second joint. It promotes accuracy but retards lift and striking power. Used primarily by beginning and less-advanced players.

Cranker: A bowler who relies more on a big hook and great carrying power than on accuracy. When these folks are "on" and the condition is right, they're unbeatable (almost).

Creep speed: A ball that is rolled very slowly.

Crossover line: The aiming point for hitting the 1-2 (1-3 for left-handers) pocket.

Deep inside line: A strike line that is popular among hook players in which the bowler stands on a high-numbered board and aims for a low-numbered board.

Deflection: The movement of the ball from its path caused by the pins that are hit.

Die: When the ball loses action at the end of the roll.

Dots: A series of spots found on the foul line and seven feet past the foul line. Also at the two most common starting points on the approach. Used primarily as reference point for foot placement. They can also be used for aiming points.

Dump: Dropping the ball at the foul line.

Early timing: Releasing the shot prior to the sliding foot arriving at the foul line.

Fifth arrow: The third from the left (for a right-handed player) or from the right (for left-handers) of the seven arrows on the lane. Located on the 25th board.

Fill: The number of pins dropped after a spare.

Finger grips: Inserts placed into finger holes of the ball. Promotes a later release for added lift.

Fingertip grip: A grip whereby the bowler inserts his fingers only up to the first joint. Used to promote hook and striking power.

Finger weight: Drilling the ball so that the finger holes are closer to the ball's label than is the thumb hole. It is a form of positive weight. Legal limit is one ounce.

First arrow: The farthest to the right (for a right-handed player) or from the left (for left-handers) of the seven arrows on the lane. Located on the fifth board.

Flatten: To turn the wrist away from the ball at the end of the release.

Fourth arrow: The arrow in the middle of the seven arrows on the lane. Located on the 20th board.

Foul line: The line at the end of the approach marking the beginning of the lane; the sliding foot or any part of the bowler's body touching the lane beyond the foul line results in a loss of pins made on the roll.

Frame: One of ten divisions of a game; the corresponding box on a score sheet.

Get-away: Dropping the ball at the foul line; see also Dump.

Full roller: Method of rolling a ball in which the track area cuts between the thumb and finger holes. While it once was the shot most frequently used, it is rare among better players today because it lacks the carrying power of the more popular semiroller.

Heads: The front portion of the lane between the foul line and the arrows.

Hang a corner pin: Leaving a corner pin standing (7 or 10).

Headpin: The 1 pin.

Heavy: When the ball hits the 1 pin head on; also on the nose.

High: When you miss the pocket and hit the 1 pin head on; usually results in a split.

Hold area: The amount of margin for error provided by an oil buildup in the center of the lane.

Holding lane: A lane condition that resists the hooking of the ball.

Hook: The break of the ball into the 1-3 (1-2) for left-handers) pocket.

Hooking lanes: A dry or lightly oiled lane condition which causes maximum hook.

In time: Simultaneous arrival at the foul line of the sliding foot and release of the ball.

Kickbacks: The ward walls on both sides of the pin deck used to promote pin deflection so pins ricochet back into play; See also Sidewalls.

Kill shot: A shot in which the bowler intentionally reduces the amount the ball will hook.

Lane conditioner: See Oil.

Late timing: When you release the shot after the sliding foot has come to a halt.

Lay a foundation: Striking in the ninth frame.

Lead-off man: First bowler in a team.

Leave: Pins standing after the first ball of a frame.

Lift: Power imparted to the ball's roll by the thumb exiting the ball first, followed by fingers.

Light hit: When the ball barely touches the 1 pin.

Loft: Distance the ball carries after it is released before it hits the lane. When properly executed the shot travels forward, not upward or downward.

Lofting: To loft one's shot.

Long oil: Condition in which oil is applied from the foul line to 35 or more feet of the 60-foot lane. Used primarily for PBA and other highly competitive tournaments to create a challenging condition for the advanced-level player.

Luster King: Machine which applies wax to the surface of bowling balls to prolong ball life and decrease hook.

Maple: Hard wood used for that portion of the lane between the foul line and the arrows.

Oil: Conditioner applied to lane's surface that extends life of the alley while retarding ball hook.

Open frame: A pin or pins left standing after the second ball in a frame.

Pie alley: A lane that allows high scoring.

Pin action: The motion of pins that in turn take out other pins.

Pin deck: The part of the lane housing the pins.

Pine: Softer wood used for that portion of the lane between the arrows and the pin deck.

Pit: The area at the end of the lane beyond the pin deck.

Pitch: The angle at which the finger holes are drilled.

Play the gutter: A strike shot angle in where the ball is rolled just outside the channel before it begins hooking into the pocket.

Pocket: The space between the 1 and 3 pins (1 and 2 for left-handers).

Polyester: Substance used for bowling balls that was very popular among pros in the 1970s and remains commonly used by amateur players. Its effect is a cross between those of urethane and rubber. A polyester ball goes straighter and doesn't hit as well as a urethane ball but hooks more and hits harder than a rubber one. Preferred by advanced-level bowlers when the lanes are exceedingly dry.

Polyurethane: See Urethane.

Power player: See Cranker.

Reverse block: An extremely difficult lane condition where the boards nearest the gutters are heavily oiled while the lane's center is relatively dry.

Reverse pitch: See Back pitch.

Revolutions: The number of times the bowling ball rolls over its circumference from when it is released until it reaches the pins. The greater the number, the more striking power usually results. Higher-quality amateur players and strokers usually achieve 10-20 revolutions. The PBA Tour's ultra-power players are usually in the 15-20 range on their strike shots.

Revs: See Revolutions.

Ringing 7-pin: Tap suffered by a left-handed player when the 4 pin flies around the 7 pin.

Ringing 10-pin: Tap suffered by a right-handed player when the 6 pin flies around the 10 pin.

Rollout: When the ball uses up most of its impetus early on so little carrying power remains by the time it reaches the pins. The shot will actually stop its hooking pattern as it approaches the pins.

Rubber: A ball surface which remains the most common among house balls. Rubber bowling balls were the balls of choice well into the 1970s until polyester balls were introduced. Rubber balls go straightest and may be useful for covering non-double-wood spares when decreasing hook is necessary on a very dry lane. Very rarely used by advanced players.

Running lane: A lane on which the ball hooks easily.

Sanding: Using an abrasive substance against the entire surface of the ball. The effect is to get ball to hook more.

Second arrow: The second from the right (for a right-handed player) or from the left (left-handers) of the seven arrows on the lane. Located on the tenth board.

Semi-fingertip grip: A grip whereby the bowler inserts his fingers into the ball halfway between the first and second joints.

Semiroller: Most popular shot among better players in which the ball's track area can be found just outside of the thumb and finger holes.

Seventh arrow: The farthest to the left (for a right-handed player) or from the right (for left-handers) of the seven arrows on the lane. Located on the 35th board.

Shining: Adding wax to ball's surface to make it smoother. Used to prolong ball life or retard hook.

Short oil: Also known as limited distance dressing (or LDD). A lane condition where oil is applied to the front 24 feet or so of the lane, leaving the remaining distance dry.

Shur-Hook: A cork substance used in the thumb hole to promote a better grip. Commonly used by the player who wants to maintain a similar feel when switching bowling balls.

Sidewalls: The walls on either side of the pin deck off of which pins can ricochet back into play; See also Kickbacks.

Sixth arrow: The second from the left (for a right-handed player) or from the right (for left-handers) of the seven arrows on the lane. Located on the 30th board.

Sleeper: A pin hidden behind another in a spare.

Soft 7-pin: A shot by a left-handed player where the 7 pin remains as the 4 pin falls weakly into the gutter. Caused by the ball deflecting to the left after colliding with the headpin.

Soft 10-pin: A shot by a right-handed player where the 10 pin remains as the 6 pin falls weakly into the gutter. Caused by the ball deflecting to the right after it collides with the headpin.

Solid: A strong hit.

Solid 7-pin: See Ringing 7-pin.

Solid 10-pin: See Ringing 10-pin.

Spare: To knock down all the pins with the first and second ball in a frame.

Spinner: A method of delivering a shot so that only the small portion of the ball (around the 7 o'clock position for right-handers and 5 o'clock for lefties) is in contact with the lane. As a rule this is not a very successful shot for maximizing carrying power and thus is rarely employed by the better bowlers.

Split: A leave of two or more pins (not the 1 pin) with open space where pins have fallen.

Stiff lane: A lane that resists a hook.

Straight player: A bowler who places a premium on accuracy at the expense of power.

Strike: To knock down all the pins on the first ball of a frame.

Stroker: A player who relies more on accuracy than power. Usually noted for having a "by the book" style that includes smooth movements, remaining square to the target throughout the delivery, and being on time at the foul line.

Strong ball: A ball rolled with a good deal of action; also Working ball.

Suitcase grip: Holding the ball like the handle of a suitcase to reduce the amount it will hook.

Swing area: The amount of margin for error to the right of a right-handed player's target (or to the left of a left-handed player's target) that is provided by a lack of conditioner on the lowest numbered boards.

Tap: A hit seems perfect but leaves one pin standing.

Third arrow: The third from the right (for a right-handed player) or from the left (for left-handers) of the seven arrows on the lane. Located on the 15th board.

Three-quarter roller: See Semiroller.

Tickler: When the 6 pin bounces of the right kickback and takes out the 10 pin.

Tight lanes: A heavy or long oil pattern that retards a shot's hook.

Timing: The relationship between the sliding foot and the hand that releases the shot. See also Early timing and Late timing.)

Thumb grips: Inserts placed inside of thumb hole to help a player get a better grip. Used primarily to maintain the same feel when switching bowling balls.

Track: See Ball track.

Tweener: A style of bowling that combines some of the power of the cranker with some of the style and accuracy of the stroker.

Urethane: Surface substance introduced in bowling balls in early 1980s. Considered state-of-the-art equipment at that time. Noted for its superior gripping of the lane coupled with strong carrying power.

Walled lane: See Blocked lane.

Wall shot: A strike that is aided by pins coming off the left kickback to take out other pins.

Walls: See Kickbacks.

Weight block: An added section of weight on the inside of the ball. Can be used to maximum advantage by skilled ball driller when placed off center.

Washout: Spare leave involving the headpin in combination with the 10 pin (for right-handers) or the headpin in combination with the 7 pin (for left-handers). Not considered a split.

Wire it: To throw three strikes in the tenth frame; also Strike out in the tenth.

More to come...

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