Wrist Support in Bowling

The first question is: do you even need a wrist support? You are going to notice that many of the top bowlers do, indeed wear wrist supports. For them, wearing a wrist support oftentimes only gives them a tiny advantage, but that tiny advantage can mean a lot during a tournament.

Some reasons why you might want to use wrist support are: you have had a wrist or hand injury in the past; you want to get a feel for the proper positioning of your wrist so that you can bowl better without the glove; your wrist flexes too far and too much for a good and proper release; your wrist is too small and/or too weak. Your wrist and its movement are key when it comes to bowling!

Wrist supports, like bowling balls, can be divided into three main categories: beginner wrist supports, mid-range wrist supports, and high performance or advanced wrist supports. The closer to advanced your wrist support is, the more it is going to cost you!

So, let’s take a look at beginner wrist supports, first. These are the least expensive, and they can still be quite effective. Before you decide to spend a ton of money on an advanced wrist support, you should most definitely take a look at some of the beginner ones

A beginner wrist support offers support by holding a piece of metal on the back of the support, and sometimes on the front, as well. It does not have any moving parts. If you are not going to be bowling a ton, this might be the perfect support for you – of course, if you know that you are going to bowl a lot, you should step it up and get a mid range wrist support. The beginner support can weaken over time – the metal can often get bent, ruining the whole purpose of wearing the glove.

Mid-range wrist supports are a bit better, and therefore generally a bit more expensive – they cover the whole area from the wrist to the fingers (and/or sometimes the first joint of the fingers) and can keep your fingers from flexing when you are about to release the ball. The metal used in mid-range wrist supports is more durable than the previously mentioned metal used in beginner wrist supports.

Advanced wrist supports are the most expensive and can cover the entire finger. These gloves are the most adjustable – you can adjust how much your hand is cupping or how straight it is. There can be big differences between different advanced wrist supports.

If you have read this article and have found it informative, then most likely you are going to want to wait before you try out an advanced wrist support. Before you try one of the advanced ones, you want to make sure that you can feel the differences between each glove and thoroughly understand which one will help you the most.

It is likely best for you to buy a beginner or a mid-range wrist support. Buy the latter of the two if you know that you will be bowling a lot – it may be a bit more expensive, but it will simply last longer.
And realize that even more important than the price of the wrist support is how well it fits. Be sure to buy a wrist support that fits your hand perfectly, otherwise it could do more harm than good. Some wrist supports are easily adjustable so that you can fit it to your hand, specifically. Many wrist supports come in multiple sizes, too.

Clear Bowling Balls

The clear bowling balls look magnificent and unique, as their outer cover is made up of transparent plastic, and can be fabricated using different means. One way is to paint its inner sides so as to look like a specific object. Most commonly used ones are skulls, professional logos, can be made to look like other sports balls like the basketball or the tennis ball, or may even contain funny designs or superheroes if they are meant for the kids or beginners. These inner painted balls have no cores, so they are not suitable for spinning the ball.

Cores play an important role in any ten pins game. The balls are made so that it has a core, which is either deformed on a side, or not in the centre making its centre of mass destabilized. This creates an imbalance, thus making the cores make each ball roll and move, as they tend to turn in that directions trying to stabilize its core, making it spin. As normal clear bowling balls have no core, a different version of them actually keeps the object inside, this behaves like the core. And the different shaped object used inside allows each ball to behave differently.

If you are a professional bowler, you should choose the balls with a core rather than the ones that are inner painted, which are mainly used to let others see how interesting it looks. Those balls use different shapes on cores, which can be cylindrical or cubical, and needs to be personalized with a particular design, as all designs don’t look equally good on a specific core shape. So choosing the core and designs are most important.

Be a Good Bowler

Mostly an aerobic form of exercise, bowling helps in burning of calories and working of muscle groups not usually exercised. Other than promoting weight, loss the game also works ligaments, joints, tendons, and muscles in the arm. Moreover, as is the norm with other sporting activities, this one helps psychosocial behavior that is attributed to forming of friend bonds.

Either the balls are rolled on a wooden or synthetic surface into objects called pins or to get close to a target ball, points are earned this way. It might seem easy but just as any other sport, the sport requires some prior warm up before getting on the pitch. This is done to avoid sudden stitches and muscle pulls once inside the pitch.

Since the balls are heavy and vary in size, one bowling tip is that they should be picked up in both hands, and while doing so, one knee should be bent to avoid back injuries owing to uneven weight distribution in the player’s body. They also do have a returning mechanism after they have been released from the player’s hand. It is advisable that nobody has their hands on them when the balls are rolling back to avoid cases of fractures and broken wrists.

Most people tend to think that bowling is an indoor game. Surprisingly enough, the game is at times usually played in a lawn outdoors. In this type, players attempt to put the ball closest to a designated spot. It is worth noting that in this type, the balls are eccentrically heavy and could therefore easily cause injuries if not well observed. A bowling tip to be observed is that care should be taken during outdoor events to minimize accidents such as hitting passersby with the ball.

Talking of pins, there are four main variations, but there are many others in other parts of the world. The ten pin is the heaviest and largest of all pins, found and used in South America. In addition, just as the name suggests, the candlepin is tall and thin and is usually bowled with a hand held ball. The other is a duckpin that is still bowled with a hand held ball only that it is short and squat. Mostly found in Canada, the five pin is between the candle and duckpins in diameter, but spots a rubber girdle.

Mini-Crampons

STABILicers Original

This was my first pair of mini-crampons. They have a full Vibram sole with replaceable steel cleats. These perform best in icy, hard conditions because of the full sole. The Velcro hook and loop strap system works well but seems to fray after serious use. They work well on slippery rocks when fly fishing too. Retail: $49.99

Kahtoola Microspikes

Kahtoola means “directly” in Tibetan. These mini-crampons are the most aggressive of any I have used to date. They have 3/8″ stainless steel spikes with a steel flex chain anchored by tough elastomer webbing. A toe bar keeps footwear securely in place. This product is comfortable and works well in all conditions, but I would not want to walk around town with them. Retail: $59.99

Yaktrax Pro

This product is made of 1.4 mm steel coils and heavy duty rubber. The Yaktrax are quite flexible and conform well to your boot or shoe. They also utilize a Velcro strap system and are the lightest of the three discussed here. These work well in packed powder conditions and around town. Retail: $30.00

Climbing With Better Climbers

Obviously Steve had climbed well within his physical ability for two decades. Quite simply, he had no idea he could climb harder. More importantly, he’d never even tried to climb harder. For instance, he’d never gone out and put a top-rope on something and just played around on it.

So, all along, Steve was capable of far harder things. His breakthrough was instigated by the sheer embarrassment of not feeling able to ‘own up’ to his normal grade. I also suspect that Dave’s easy-going personality helped. A capable climber, Dave is also a very relaxed guy who does not come over as a rock-jock. Instead, he’s endlessly supportive.

Steve continued to climb to E4. He never became a bold climber but, if a route is well protected, he’ll get on it and, very often, he’ll do it. He still enjoys Severes. But he also enjoys climbing E4’s – six grades harder – and every grade in between.

There’s a lesson there – for all of us. Climbing with other people who are a lot better can help us to ‘drag our grades up’. Obviously the better climber must be supportive. And, equally, one must not be put off by the grade difference. Just let go of your ego. I used to climb with a guy called Ian Vincent, who was climbing F8b (5.13d) when I was only on about F6b+ (5.11a). We still had great days climbing together.

Seeing a better climber on routes that seem too hard for you demystifies them and makes them so much more accessible. You pick up tips, techniques and, best of all, a different mind-set. The better climber probably knows, much better than you, what you’re capable of. If they say, “You can do it,” then, chances are, you can.

I’ve a confession to make: every significant grade breakthrough I’ve ever made has been on my down. Conversely, I’ve helped dozens of climbers to make grade breakthroughs. There’s a hard way to get better (mine!) and an easy way (climbing with better people). So my advice is this: choose the easy way and climb with better people!

Running Drills

As I mentioned, the primary reasons for using these movements is to help athletes correct some of the many technical errors that occur when they are running at high intensities. The reasons that these errors occur are due to several factors. Most often, it is simply due to the fact that athletes have never been instructed on the right ways to move when they run, or what they should be thinking about as they sprint. This is usually because their coaches don’t really have any idea what to tell them. Another reason is due to lack of coordination.

Running fast requires the coordination of many muscles working simultaneously. Lack of coordination causes the brain to do more work to keep athletes from losing their balance, so it has to slow the body down to compensate. Other reasons are lack of physical strength in the legs and weak cores (abs, hips, lower back).

My point in saying all of this is that in order to learn how to do speed training drills correctly, athletes and the coaches who teach them must be able to see these drills done the right way. Descriptions of drills (and even still photos) are a poor representation of the specific ranges of motion that athletes must learn to do as a part of a complete speed training program. The reason they need to learn these drills in the first place is because they don’t do them right or have running styles that limit their ability to accelerate, maintain top speeds and generally perform to the best of their abilities.

So if you attempt to teach or learn the drills that address these issues by reading about how to do them instead of watching them on video, you are doomed to make errors in your comprehension. In short, you won’t get a full understanding of the techniques and then you will simply reinforce an entirely new set of bad habits that must be broken again in order to achieve the results that bring you to this site today. In fact, I have never seen anyone properly teach themselves or others how to do a useful speed training drill by reading about it.

On top of that, you have to make sure that the speed training drills that you are learning are actually going to reinforce proper mechanics. Some popular drills teach athletes the wrong ideas. For example, high knees and butt kicks are age old exercises that teach athletes to continue to run at less than their full potential. Why?

High knees teach athlete to drive their knees up and let the ankle come out from underneath the hips when running. To run faster, athletes must drive the foot down into the ground with the foot landing underneath the hips. Butt kicks teach athletes to bend at the knee when running as if they were doing a hamstring curl.

Yet, the leg never operates in this way when running even though it may look like it. This is why you should never have athletes do hamstring curls in the weight room. It is a waste of time and effort.

Hiking and Gear For Sleeping

Tent

In my experience there are 3 major factors to consider when you purchase a tent for hiking.

Firstly there is the weight to consider. You need to consider how big the tent needs to be depending on the size of your group and how much you want to carry. So really the weight is a “trade off” and needs to be considered carefully. A 2 or 3 man tent is great for the right hiking and gear for one person to carry.

Secondly you need to consider how your tent packs into your rucksack. Is the tent packing volume the right size for your rucksack? Will it fit OK?

Thirdly, how easy is it to set up? After a long day of great, but maybe tiring, hiking you will want to ensure that the tent was easy to put up without too many complications.

Sleeping bag

Sleeping bags are also important as part of your hiking and gear for sleeping. For hiking I would buy a tapered or mummy type bag that tends to be thinner at the foot end. This will ensure extra warmth because your body does not have to work so hard to keep warm. Also ensure that the sleeping bag has a hood (due to the amount of heat that is generated from your head).

The other important thing about sleeping bags as part of your hiking and gear is the stitching. Cheaper bags are stitched through the actual bag creating big pockets. Manufacturers then fill these pockets with insulation. As the stitching is through the actual sleeping bag there are pockets of cold spots all over the sleeping bag. So avoid these sleeping bags. Instead go for the sleeping bag that has offset stitching. This where the stitching is in the middle of the insulation so that there are no cold spots.

Mid Range Bowling Balls

Overall, if you are looking to step up your game, it is a good idea to move onto a mid range bowling ball. To go straight from a basic urethane ball (like the house balls at a bowling alley) to a high performance ball may hurt your game more than it can help it.

A mid range bowling ball, on the other hand, might step your game up just the right amount… and it is going to cost you less money! Mid range bowling balls can be very aggressive without being too aggressive.

A mid range bowling ball is going to give you a much better breakpoint reaction and greater hook. Not until you have mastered a mid range bowling ball should you move up to a high performance ball.

It is possible to find a great range of mid range bowling balls by all of the greatest manufacturers. Something in the $75-125 price range is generally a good bet.

What kind of mid range bowling ball should you get?

  • A polyester ball does not grip the lane – it is not going to give you much hook.
  • A Reactive bowling ball has better traction. Also, if you bowl in different bowling alleys that have different lane conditions, you are going to notice that difference whenever you bowl with a reactive bowling ball.
  • A particle ball is going to have a lot of hook to it. Nonetheless, many people say that they are easier to control than reactive bowling balls.

Good luck on your search for the perfect mid range bowling ball!

How To Hone Your Hook In Bowling

  1. Make sure you are using the right bowling ball. Both the size and weight of the ball must be in perfect proportion to the shape and strength of the bowler. If you are not using the proper ball, you will not hit your target.
  2. It is vital to have a good grip on the bowling ball. You always want to bowl with your dominant hand. If you are right handed, bowl with your right hand. If you’re a leftie, then use your left hand. Some players tuck their “pinky” underneath their bowling ball for additional support and to increase the force when releasing the ball.
  3. When you bowl, you must remain focused and visualize where you want the ball to go. Some bowlers use the arrow markings as a guide when judging the ball’s path.
  4. Your release needs to be perfectly timed. Some bowlers take four steps, with the third being a half step to make sure they are in the correct position for release. To get perfect timing, swing the bowling ball while you are taking your steps, and start to release the ball when your ankle touches the ground and you begin sliding. Release the ball when you stop sliding.
  5. The swinging and release of the ball is the last step. If you want to use the hook, the trick is to make the bowling ball rotate as it rolls down the lane. To make this happen, you have to bend your elbow during your swing and straighten it out as you release.

Overview of Slacklining

There are a few different styles of slacklining that include tricklining, slackline yoga, highlining, rodeo slacklining, waterlining and windlining. Each brings about its own set of new challenges.

Tricklining is a very popular style of slacklining that usually done low to the ground. Trickliners showcase an impressive array of technical flips and tricks. The tricks range in difficulty. Some of the more simple tricks include walking forward and backward, turning around, dropping to a knee and jumping onto the line from the ground. The more advanced tricks include jumping, surfing, back and chest bouncing, flips and spins.

Slackline yoga is when you do yoga poses on a slackline. This type of slacklining is usually performed on a one-inch line with low tension. Slacklining with little tension makes the line a lot more sensitive to each movement made. Low tension on a line is a great challenge by itself. So doing yoga poses on said line takes a great deal of concentration and skill.

Highlining is when the slackline is elevated high above a surface. Highlines are usually set up between two rocks that have a big drop. Most highliners use a safety harness or leash to keep the sport as safe as possible. However, pros like Andy Lewis and Dean Potter have been known to walk highlines without a leash. That increases the risk but makes the completion that much more impressive.

Rodeo slacklining is when the ends of the slackline are placed high with no tension. This causes the slackline to hang down like a “U” shape. Rodeo slacklining allows the opportunity to use the slackline as a swing. It is also a great style to surf the line because of the amount of back and forth movement.

Waterlining is when the slackline is set above water including lakes, rivers and pools. The reflection of the surface of the water can be a distraction making it more difficult to keep focus. Waterlines can be set up ranging high above the surface of the water to just below the surface. Waterlining can be very useful to practice tricks on.

Windlining is when the slackline is set up in very windy conditions. Even a slight wind will cause the slackline to ripple and/or shake. The windier it is the harder it becomes to maintain balance. This makes windlining a great challenge.

Hopefully this brief overview gave a bit of insight to the wonderful sport of slacklining. It is both challenging and fun no matter the style. Such a unique sport has only room to grow. So be apart of the growth today and go have some fun!