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George Freeman's Expert Bowling Tips

-How To Determine A Good Starting Ball Weight
06/15/2001 - By George Freeman
      Getting a bowling ball for the first time can be a very tricky venture, especially when choosing the ball's weight.  You want to make sure you're happy with the ball you choose because after all, once your bowling ball has holes in it, it would be very difficult to bring it back if you don't like it.

A good starting point when trying to decide what weight would be right for you is to take 10% of your body weight. If you weigh 145 pounds, start out trying a 14 or 15 pounder.  Depending on each individual's physical make up, you might want to go up a pound in weight, or even down a pound or two.  You want to find a weight that is heavy enough that you aren't slinging it down the lanes at a high rate of speed, but not to get exhausted by the third game of league.

So how do you go about finding the right weight without spending $1000 on bowling balls experimenting?  Open bowling.  In 99.9% of bowling centers across America, bowling centers provide "house balls" for people who do not have one to use.  They range in every weight permissible by ABC regulations, and have an abundant number on hand.  As a rule, the heavier the ball, the bigger the holes are on house balls.  These bowling balls will not fit your hand perfectly, but they will give you a general idea about how much weight you can physically handle without feeling like you're going to kill yourself in the process.  When you find a suitable weight, go into your certified pro shop and tell them what you need.  They will be more than happy to help you.

Hopefully this will give you a head start in finding what you're looking for in a bowling ball.  Next week, I'll discuss ball weights for the more advanced bowler.

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