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Building a Championship Bowling Program: Fundamentals & Drills

with Gary Sparks, Vincennes University Head Coach;
11x National Junior College Athletic Association (NJCAA) Champions; 3x NJCAA Coach of the Year; distinguished member of the NJCAA Hall of Fame (2003)

Eleven-time National Championship Coach Gary Sparks presents a comprehensive three-part presentation that not only covers the "how-tos" of coaching bowling, but more importantly the "whys."

Bowling Fundamentals
Coach Sparks begins this presentation with a step-by-step description, demonstration, and video breakdown of the fundamental mechanics of the game. These technical fundamentals are critical to a bowler's ability to deliver accurate balls. These technical elements include the following phases:

  • Set-up and Stance - A good set-up is needed for a good start, and a good start is needed for a good finish. See a break down of waist up and waist down technical components that will provide consistency, repeatability and versatility for your shots.
  • Starts - Developing consistency in the start translates into consistent timing and improved repeatability. Techniques in this segment include: The direction of the start of the ball/swing in motion, direction and amount of "pushaway," the speed and timing of the downswing and swing alignment in relation to the target path.
  • Approach - A solid approach allows the bowler to maximize leverage out of their shot which translates into power and versatility. This segment breaks down the timing and tempo of a 4-step approach, specifically studying positioning, balance, leverage, and movement.
  • Delivery/Release - A critical part of being able to release the ball consistently is having the wrist and fingers in the proper positions. Technical details include the wrist and hand position and the most beneficial arm/elbow position at the release to maximize leverage and power.
  • Finish Position - "Posting the shot" comes from good balance and timing, eliminating muscling during the swing and delivery. In this segment, Sparks teaches you optimal back tilt to improve consistency and movement, non-bowling arm position, non-slide foot position, and more.
Mental Game
It is imperative to actively teach and coach the mental aspects of the game for optimal performance. The points of emphasis Sparks details include:
  • Process vs. Outcome - Change your athletes' mentality from striking to execution. Coach Sparks shows you how you can help your athletes focus on learning good habits and developing consistent, repeatable skills rather than purely focusing on throwing strikes.
  • Relaxation & Breathing - Tension free movements provide the best opportunity for success.
  • Visualization - Learn how to mentally rehearse a skill or shot, enhance focus and build confidence.
  • Pre-Shot Routine - Enhance the repeatability of your team's bowling mechanics and improve focus.
Bowling Drills and Competitive Games
Coach Sparks' bowling drills and competitive games are designed to develop essential skills and create mental challenges for practice that carryover into competition. The drills are fun, creative and purposeful.

This comprehensive video is loaded with championship-winning techniques and drills that you can start using immediately to prepare your team for success.

102 minutes. 2013.

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