What is the difference between indoor and outdoor bowls? | How long is an indoor bowls green? | What are the rules of indoor bowls? | Who won the World Indoor Bowls Championship 2020? | How can I play indoor bowls better?
What is the difference between indoor and outdoor bowls?
The difference between indoor and outdoor bowls is the surface it is played on. Outdoor bowls is played mainly on grass, and sometimes on synthetic surfaces, whereas indoor bowls is played on a fine carpet. The rules and techniques are the same across both formats
An indoor bowls rink is 40 meters long. The width of a rink will be between 4.3 meters and 5.8 meters depending on the facilities available. For instance, extra rinks can be squeezed in if required.
- A coin is tossed to decide which team bowl first.
- The first bowler places the mat. It must be placed centrally – so it lines up with the rink number markers – and at least 2 meters from the rink edge.
- When playing any shot the player bowling must always have one foot on the mat
- The first bowler rolls the jack to whatever distance they like. The only restrictions is it must be at least 25 meters from the mat, and must stay out of the ditch. There is usually a marker on the rink to show where the minimum distance is
- Once the jack has come to rest it is placed centrally by the marker with the help of the bowler. The jack now becomes the target
- Teams alternate taking shots. Each member of the team will take all of their shots before the next one takes over
- Any bowls that are in play can be moved by another shot, and they stay active to where they finish. This includes the jack!
- Any bowl that finishes in the ditch is considered out of play
- Once all players have finished their shots the game is scored (see below for details on how to score)
- The winning team will get to go first on the next “end” (or leg). This will be played in the opposite direction to the previous end
- The game continues until a predetermined number of ends are played – usually 18 or 21, however, indoor bowls can also be played over multiple sets
Indoor bowls is often played over two sets of 9 ends. If it is a draw after the 2 sets, a 3 end set is played to decide the winner.
Note – indoor bowls is not always played over sets, but is played over a specific number of ends similar to outdoor bowls in many cases
Is sprayed (otherwise referred to as “Chalked”)to denote it touched the jack on its initial delivery.
A bowl which touches the jack later on in an end (either being knocked onto it or vice versa), then the bowl will NOT be marked. This mark becomes important if the bowl ends up in the ditch – either from the initial delivery or being knocked in later on. Normally once a bowl is in the ditch it is “out of bounds” and won’t count in any final count. This is not the case for chalked bowls. They are still active in the ditch and can be counted as any other bowl would as if it was still on the green.
Robert Paxton won the World Indoor Bowls Championship in 2020, and will hold the title until the next tournament a Potter’s Resort in early 2021.
Indoor bowls rinks are often much slower than outdoor greens, it, therefore, requires less effort to bowl the ball. A superior technique is often one that is simple, repeatable, and smooth.
Bad shots are played when something goes wrong with the delivery technique. No one plans to bowl a bad shot!
Therefore simpler techniques are better, as there are fewer elements to go wrong. Analyse your technique by filming your self. See if there are any unnecessary movements which can be removed.
Bowls is about consistency. If you are delivering the bowl differently every time you will struggle to find success.
This goes hand-in-hand with the “Simplicity” step above.
A great delivery looks smooth and effortless. Smooth deliveries are repeatable, as short, jerky motions are hard to repeat.