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The 3 Main Horizontal Bowling Hand Positions

This is Part 3 in the bowling tips video series on how to release a bowling ball
This article in the series is on horizontal hand positions and how they affect your bowling balls roll and motion.


First, there are 3 main horizontal hand positions
They are 12 O‘clock, 10:30. and 9 O‘clock, hand positions
Each of these hand positions promotes a different type of ball roll and can be used in a different situation in your bowling game.

When experimenting with these hand positions.
Care must be taken to avoid any injury.
So any time you experience pain or any discomfort you are not executing it correctly and should be adjusted.

Again these are for right handed bowlers - reverse for left handers

Horizontal hand positions explained
First The 12 o'clock release, as you hold your ball your thumb comes straight up with no (or very little) side turn. Your hand and thumb will be at the 12 o'clock position as it is released. This release will give the bowling ball a lot of end over end roll. It causes the bowling ball to delay its break point. This release is used on dryer lanes and to help get the ball down the lane before it hooks. (Note: this is also called a 10 degree axis rotation).

12 o'clock, bowling hand position

The 10:30 release, as you hold your bowling ball your hand is turned horizontal and your thumb is pointed at 10:30 on a clock, or at a 45 degree angle. This release is the most common. It also should be used as a starting point. This release gives the bowling ball a slight inward turn toward the 7 pin (Note: this is also called a 45 degree axis rotation).

10:30, bowling hand position

The 9 o'clock release, as you hold the bowling ball your hand is turned horizontally to the side facing 9 o'clock. This release causes the ball to have a lot of spin. It sometimes causes what we call a spinner. This means the bowling ball is spinning like a top. It also has very little ball to lane surface contact. This means the bowling ball will not have much hook or drive as it rolls down the bowling lane. When it hits the bowling pins it may hit dead with not much action. (Note: this is also called the 90 degree axis rotation).

9 o'clock, bowling hand position

Experiment with these hand positions and learn to recognize when to use them can greatly increase your bowling scores.

Look for our next video in this series
Part 4 on finger positions and how they affect bowling ball motion.

For more bowling tips go to http://insiderbowlingtips.com and remember practice, practice, practice


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