I previously talked about "Lift" and "Turn" in my Blog Post on 10/25/21. As a review, if you hold your ball with a flat hand (palm facing up with the thumb at the 3:00 position and pinky at 9:00) at the stance and also on the downswing and release, the ball will have NO Turn. Turn is any motion from the arm, elbow, hand or the combination of all three working together. The reason we need some turn is to get the ball in the proper position when we release it to create a Hook (curve).
Turn is affected by the different positions we can adjust our hand at the point of release, and there are several ways we can "Turn" the ball in order to achieve good action at the pins. If you think of the face of a clock as a circle which you know is 360 degrees, then if you go from a 12:00 position (the middle fingers are at the 12) to a 1:00 position, that would be a 30 degree turn which is one number on a clock face (12 numbers on the clock divided by 360 degrees=30 degrees). Turning the hand to the right (clockwise) is called a "TURNING OUT" . A "TURNING IN" is when you turn your hand counterclockwise or to the left. This hand rotating is usually done on the backswing and as your arm is coming forward, you turn your hand back to the 12:00 position strongly at the release.
"Turning In" and "Turning Out" take practice because sometimes you may turn the hand too much and not turn it back enough.
Always try these new things in your practice sessions first, and then bring in to your league play. Just have fun with it !!
Here are a few examples of how you can rotate your hand in different positions. Try them in your next practice session to see how these small changes can affect the way the ball will work on the lane:
1. A 90 degree Turning In-- At the stance, hold your hand with the fingers at the 12:00 position and the thumb at the 11:00 position. On the backswing, turn the hand so the thumb is at the 8:00 position (a movement of 3 numbers). You can hold it that way on the release and this is the way to throw a FULL ROLLER track as discussed in my Blog Post from 8/23/21. This type of track will deliver a strong lift because the middle finger dominates and the rotation of the ball as it hits the pins will produce good action.
2. A 30 Degree Turning Out--Hold your thumb at the 10:00 position (fingers at the 12:00 position) and at the top of the backswing, move your thumb to the 11:00 position (only 1 number on the clock face) and then on the downswing move your hand back to the 10:00 position. This is how to throw a SEMI ROLLER track which produces a good hook that is easily controlled.
Try to practice this one and really focus on the FEEL because you don't want to turn your hand too soon or it may limit your ability to lift properly. Make sure your timing is good (having the arm and feet in sync with each other).
There are other combinations of Turning In and Turning Out that you can try on your own. Practice LIFTING just as you begin to turn the ball, and then maybe lifting the ball a split second after you turn it to see what these little adjustments can do. Even experiment with a 60 degree Turn In and Turn Out.
Try holding your hand at the 11:00 position on the downswing and through the release with no turn. The ball will still have a hook on it because you are releasing it with your hand on the side of the ball. Try a CRANK shot by holding your hand with the thumb at the 10:00 position at the stance, and Turning OUT to the 5:00 position and then back to the 11:00 position at the release. It will feel weird because it's unnatural to hold the hand that way, but it will give you a nice hook and lots of action at the pins.
Again, have fun and experiment during your practice sessions. Take notes so you can review them before using them in the league once you feel comfortable and confident.
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Good Luck and High Scoring!!
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Hello!! My name is Joanie. Although I'm not a professional bowler, I have loved the sport for more than 45 years, averaged over 200 for several seasons, and learned quite a bit with research and experience.