Lawn bowls can be tricky for beginners. Here our my 6 tips to help you get the most out of your time with lawn bowls.
Bowls can be frustrating for beginners. Here are 6 tips to help develop your game, play better, and enjoy yourself more!
Keep things simple
Lawn bowls is a simple game made complicated. Keep things simple and get back to basics. This will help your development.
If you are playing lead – which most beginners are encouraged to – keep the mat in the same place. Don’t be tempted to start moving it up and down the green after each end, simply because you’ve seen others do it. Your brain needs to get used to judging distances, and this is done best with as many constants as possible.
This also applies to shot selection. Forget about firing and playing running shots, there will be plenty of time for that later! Stick to your draw shot. This is the most basic shot in the game and will be something you will always rely on.
Get the right equipment
Bowls doesn’t have to be expensive. Getting a good set of second-hand bowls is an excellent way to start.
Bowls rarely deteriorate over time, so you can be confident that a second-hand set will perform just as well as it did when they were manufactured.
See our guide for the best lawn bowls for leads for more information.
Play to a comfortable weight
Roll the jack to a weight that is comfortable for you. This will help with your confidence and your consistency. It’s very difficult to develop a good technique when you are trying to force extra weight – or trying hard to remove it. A consistent weight will develop your “feel” for the game.
If you do find yourself struggling to adjust to a weight, try one shot at a comfortable weight FOR YOU. This will then act as a reference point to adjust for your next shot.
Focus on “line control” before weight control
The foundation of a good bowls technique is based on line control. Focus on this more than anything else at first. This ties in with the “Play to a comfortable weight” point above. If you are bowling to a comfortable weight, you provide more mental space for your line control.
Line control will aide your weight control in the future, so be sure to nail it as soon as possible.
Set realistic goals
Lawn bowlers are perfectionists. A bowler will draw 2 feet from the jack, and they will try to “correct” the weight, leading them to overcompensate and finish 6 feet way with the second shot.
Sometimes you just have to acknowledge that you aren’t at an elite level, and aiming to be within 3 feet of the jack is always a good result.
Bowl enough shots in that area and good things will happen.
Remember bowls is supposed to be fun! We all have good days and bad days. As long as you can brush off the bad ones, and have a good chat with your fellow bowlers over a pint or two you won’t go too far wrong.