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The basic technique

The sport of bowls takes a minute to learn, but a lifetime to master. The action required to deliver a bowl is based on a fairly natural physical movement and your first shot could be every bit as good as a world champion’s.

Every bowler’s delivery is slightly different but you can’t go too far wrong, and no-one’s going to laugh at you whilst you’re getting the hang of it. Once you have got the basic delivery sussed, you’ll be hooked on getting consistently close to the jack. Here’s a basic guide to help beginners get started. If you have a physical disability, you may need to adopt a different approach.

The Position on the mat and Stance

Before delivery you should stand on the mat. Face forward with your feet pointing towards the jack, but to one side of it depending which way you are planning to curve the bowl. The bowl should feel comfortable in your favoured hand and be placed outside the hip to enable an unimpeded backswing. You should be looking where you’re aiming.

The Delivery

Most players combine a forward stride with their backswing. On completion of your backswing, then swing your arm forwards whilst bending your knees so, at the moment of release, the hand holding the bowl is almost touching the ground. This helps the bowl roll smoothly. At the moment of delivery, make sure one of your feet is is on the mat. Simple as that!

The Bias

Oh yes, the bias is the slightly tricky bit! The bias is the shape of the bowl that makes it turn. To make it easy, bowls have a large disc one side and a small disc on the other. The bowl curves towards the side with the smaller disc. So, if you are a right hander holding the bowl with the small disc on the side nearest their thumb, the bowl will curve from left to right so you need to aim to the left of the jack.

Iver Heath Bowls Club The basic technique
Iver Heath Bowls Club The basic technique