(Page updated: 26/10/2020)
Some quotes to contemplate? –
“The more you practice, the luckier you get” – Gary Player
“Whether you think you can, or you think you can’t, you’re right.” – Henry Ford
Training is practice, is purposeful practice, is the effort to improve & to challenge & test yourself with repeated shots before they’re presented in game time.
Some people think that regular bowling improves your game. However, the type or rate or degree of improvement can be variable & only applicable to the particular involvement. Truly “improving your game” needs a focus & measure that social bowling or casual rollups don’t usually provide.
Training is your participation in a program that aims to create improvements in order to achieve a desired level or goal. That’s why you’re doing it & you just need to decide what level or goal you want.
Did you notice the use of the word “just“? Often considered as something easy, it’s sometimes probably more akin to work! Quote time – “Success is sweet, but the secret is sweat” (Norman Schwarzkopf).
How to start training can be the hardest problem to solve but there is an easy answer: coaching. Getting advice can come directly from a coach (for which The Hills Club is well-equipped) or copious material squirreled-away on the internet. It doesn’t need you to sign-up for anything, discussion or research is cheap; “just do it”!
This Hills Club website page is never going to be able to provide information on all programs but as a starter, let’s consider a “CAT session” (ie Consistency, Awareness & Thinking). Many training articles will highlight consistency as key, along with you being aware & thinking about your delivery.
As a warmup (or as a session in itself?), start with delivering your bowls into the ditch for a few ends from about 6-8 meters out & focus on duplicating the delivery action, staying down & following through after the delivery & also listening for your bowl release – a true CAT session?
Another warmup/consistency technique is to attempt to “caterpillar” your bowls. No jack, 4 bowls, delivering from a mat on an identical line with identical weight. The objective is to achieve a caterpillar of bowls; not easy – but I did say “attempt”. If there is a bad bowl, walk down & retrieve it. Focus on repeating the line & don’t watch your bowls finish. Repeat for at least 4 ends, ensuring you deliver on both hands for alternate ends. Think about what you’ve achieved; was your weight consistent? did you vary the end lengths?
A factor for consistency is to ensure duplication of delivery effort for PSR & ASH (ie every delivery should have an identical Pre-Shot Routine & you should ensure a consistent After-Shot Habit). Consider the assistance of a coach (or video?) for outside observation of your bowling actions. A coach can see where your actions aren’t consistent or where there are issues with your routine.
Training drills are intended to hone your deliveries for shots; you wouldn’t expect a successful game play without prior practice would you? Would you? A vast range of drills can be undertaken for various playing positions. Our Hills Club is blessed with a number of Accredited Coaches who can assist with training advice & support (refer the listed names on the Coaching page or contact the Bowls Secretary for information).