win a ball from Bowling.com

Author Topic: I'm 46, and I'm probably switching to 2-handed bowling.  (Read 1396 times)

JessN16

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 3597
I'm 46, and I'm probably switching to 2-handed bowling.
« on: February 22, 2019, 04:07:46 AM »
There comes a point when you're either going to get better, or you're not. And then you have to decide whether you're even going to continue at all.

The last five years have been rough for me. I moved to a much harder house than I'd been accustomed to over the previous 10 years, and when I did my average dropped about 35 pins. I've still been able to bowl at a higher average in out-of-town tournaments, so I know my basic abilities are still there, but there's a laundry list of things that have changed for me recently as a function of getting older.

There was the heart attack, the sudden onset of come-and-go gout (lots of things happen after heart attacks, some that don't seem related but really are), a flare-up of tendonitis in my right Achilles. There's the arthritic right wrist, made worse by years of bowling with the wrong span and pitches. Weight gain. A degenerative right knee caused by a baseball injury from way back in 1988.

Last year, I made some equipment changes and bought myself a 10-pin jump in average from the year before, but that still only put me in the mid-170s (at this new house, we have fewer than 5 people averaging deuce). Regardless, that made me feel good, because I saw progress. But when the 2018-2019 season began, I lost most of that modest gain and am back to thinking 510 is a "good" series.

Sure, I can still have a good game (or get lucky) and roll a 230. But I usually frame it with a 150 on one side and a 160 on the other. We don't get a lot of help from the lanes here, but my bigger problem is myself -- my inconsistency, my aches and pains, my lack of time to practice.

Given that it's hard to get excited about watching yourself and your game disintegrate, I kind of hit a fork in the road a month ago: Either I would get better, or I would get gone. The one thing I will not do, especially at such a young age, is fall back to where I was when I was a beginner. I can already tell I'm not going to be happy in my senior years playing out the string.

The single biggest issue to overcome is definitely the wrist pain. No combination of pitches or spans seems to fix it anymore. My absolute, upper limit is 6 games bowled at a time. Sometimes I don't even get three. I'm worthless as a tournament bowler even though my last tournament, I finished second in handicap and eighth in scratch scores for all events. I just happened to get very lucky with my body that day.

I'm not sure going two-handed is going to solve that, but at least it takes the thumb out of the equation. Switching over gives me something to look forward to, at any rate. Maybe I'll find something I didn't know was there in the first place.

I've considered blogging the change, but I don't really have a place to blog. I don't want to bore everyone else here by posting banal league details every week. But I do want to see if it's possible to do, and if it is, I want to share that with other middle-age/older guys who are at a similar crossroads.

Or I'm going to give it all up. There's really no in-between anymore.

Jess

 

JazlarVonSteich

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 373
Re: I'm 46, and I'm probably switching to 2-handed bowling.
« Reply #1 on: February 22, 2019, 10:20:58 AM »
I turn 45 in May and I decided to switch back to two handed in December. Best choice I made since I switched to 14lbs a few years back.

I've been having various issues in the last year or so. For the most part, going back to two handed has helped. It also feels more natural to me to deliver the ball that way.

I previously bowled two handed for 2+ years about 7-8 years ago. I ultimately had to give it up due to hip pain. It seems that now that I've went back, I've developed different techniques. I don't see the hip pain being an issue.

Now that I've narrowed down my arsenal to primarily 3 balls (though I do have other options if needed), and having figured out what layout(s) work best, I'm starting to see improvement in scores. Overall it's been better on my body and I'm having more fun. Our "house" shot has been tough this year, but I'm finally starting to get scores around my average from last season.

This is my main arsenal right now:

Storm Fever Pitch
900 Global White Hot Badger
900 Global Space Time Continuum

I use the Fever Pitch to start and only go to resin if it just isn't working. I do have some other resin and urethane options that I keep in the pro shop, but I feel like these 3 are enough to cover whatever I see on the house shot.

I say go for it. It doesn't hurt to try.

rocky61201

  • Full Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 173
Re: I'm 46, and I'm probably switching to 2-handed bowling.
« Reply #2 on: February 22, 2019, 10:28:05 AM »
Sorry for your troubles and I hope your health and your game improves.  Have you tried experimenting with 1 handed no-thumb bowling like Pro Tom Daugherty?  In my opinion much easier physically than 2 handed bowling.  I am a traditional 1 handed bowler but still try to make the game fun once in awhile.  When practicing with my friends I  will switch around with different styles in the middle of games just to see if I can. 

No thumb is much easier to pull off than 2 handed bowling and doesn't require that much of a change in timing and approach.  You will pick up some speed and revs for sure.  Hardest thing to get used to is putting proper axis rotation on the ball so you don't roll it dead flat and track over the fingers and thumb hole.

A no-thumb bowler in my leagues averages +215 for years and uses a glove to improve his feel and get consistent axis rotation on the ball.  No wrist support glove, just a basic glove like for golf. 
« Last Edit: February 22, 2019, 10:30:55 AM by rocky61201 »
In the bag: Hy Road Nano, Hy Road OG, Mix

Mbosco

  • Full Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 203
Re: I'm 46, and I'm probably switching to 2-handed bowling.
« Reply #3 on: February 22, 2019, 10:57:13 AM »
Sorry for your troubles and I hope your health and your game improves.  Have you tried experimenting with 1 handed no-thumb bowling like Pro Tom Daugherty?  In my opinion much easier physically than 2 handed bowling.  I am a traditional 1 handed bowler but still try to make the game fun once in awhile.  When practicing with my friends I  will switch around with different styles in the middle of games just to see if I can. 

I'm curious why you think no thumbing it one-handed would be physically easier than two-handed for a guy with debilitating wrist pain.  It would literally be twice as hard on his wrist.

rocky61201

  • Full Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 173
Re: I'm 46, and I'm probably switching to 2-handed bowling.
« Reply #4 on: February 22, 2019, 11:06:12 AM »
Because I've tried both styles.  I've got my aches and pains too, but no-thumb is easier for me than two-handed.  Maybe it will be for him.......and maybe it won't.  Experimenting with different techniques is better than his last option, giving it all up.
« Last Edit: February 22, 2019, 11:11:10 AM by rocky61201 »
In the bag: Hy Road Nano, Hy Road OG, Mix

duvallite

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 647
Re: I'm 46, and I'm probably switching to 2-handed bowling.
« Reply #5 on: February 22, 2019, 11:07:44 AM »
Good luck with the switch, and do post about how things are going.  At 62, I've also been wondering about giving 2-handed a try, but worry about how it might affect my iffy back, so it's probably unlikely for me.  The many sports related injuries from younger days have finally been catching up to me the last few years, along with the bowling related problems like arthritis in my bowling fingers, a MCL sprain in my slide knee, and just Wednesday night a stinging nerve sensation in my thumb while bowling.  It always seems to be something anymore, though still bowling well with a 195 THS average.  Hope to get a few more years in, but I would not enjoy it if my bowling started going downhill.

So, do what you can to stay healthy, and consider adding some flexibility exercises and maybe some minor weight training to help combat the age related issues.  It's been helpful to me and might be for you too.

notclay

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 5915
Re: I'm 46, and I'm probably switching to 2-handed bowling.
« Reply #6 on: February 22, 2019, 08:56:42 PM »

I'm 57 and not ready to switch at all.  Here's why.  Too many two-handers are definitely rev-dominant.  Sure, they can create more area than I can, and some of those explosive strikes are really cool, but consistency seems to be the issue.  Because their new style allows for way more miss room (on typical house shots) they can sometimes really embarrass themselves on tougher patterns.  (I can definitely struggle there, too.) 

I'm no where as strong as I was in my 30s and 40s, but my mechanics are better most nights.  What's the difference?  A few lessons with Mike Jasnau.  I had developed a few things over time that were rather small, but just enough to cause inconsistency.  Am I "there" yet?  Not quite.  But my timing, balance and ball speed are much better and remind me of 20 years ago, but with LESS EFFORT.

Is it hard work?  Yes.  After my first lesson I saw SOME things get better and felt others were still "not quite".  After the second lesson there is a more clear vision of what can happen when it falls together.

The lessons are not cheap, but that's incentive for me to actually practice the right things and see results.   Mr. Jasnau is thorough and seems to love to helping people, which is a plus.  My ball speed is up, my timing is better, and my balance and ability to repeat shots is progressing well.  I consider it money invested in my bowling longevity.  Mike has also never missed a chance to rib me about using Big B instead of Storm...

Not everyone has a Jasnau close by, but if ever given a chance, take it.  Someday I might be making the switch to the "dark side", as everyone is talking about, but it's  a long way down the road if it happens.  Although I'm not anywhere near young, I feel a re-birth in my physical and mental approach to the game.  I enjoy it again.

Best of luck to all as we strive to excel at this crazy game.






« Last Edit: February 22, 2019, 09:02:13 PM by notclay »
Lane Carter
Brunswick Regional Staff
Salt Lake City, Utah

Strapper_Squared

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 4223
Re: I'm 46, and I'm probably switching to 2-handed bowling.
« Reply #7 on: February 22, 2019, 09:21:10 PM »
Agree with this ^^.  Mike does a great job.  Plan on taking another lesson with him this year at Nationals.

While 2 handed many be fun, I think it required a substantial amount of flexibility and may actually put more stress on certain parts of the body.  Not trying to discourage- but hopefully it is not truly an all or nothing proposition.  Many of the local 2 hander's I've seen either 1) zero ability to repeat shots - but lots of speed and revs or 2) struggle to generate enough speed to match their newly found rev rates.
+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+

itsallaboutme

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 1807
Re: I'm 46, and I'm probably switching to 2-handed bowling.
« Reply #8 on: February 22, 2019, 10:00:18 PM »
It takes way more athleticism to be good at 2 handing than people think.

At 46 with a heart attack, weight gain, and nagging ailments you'd be better off taking some time off to focus on your health and come back when you can enjoy the game.

JessN16

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 3597
Re: I'm 46, and I'm probably switching to 2-handed bowling.
« Reply #9 on: February 22, 2019, 10:44:39 PM »
Sorry for your troubles and I hope your health and your game improves.  Have you tried experimenting with 1 handed no-thumb bowling like Pro Tom Daugherty?  In my opinion much easier physically than 2 handed bowling.  I am a traditional 1 handed bowler but still try to make the game fun once in awhile.  When practicing with my friends I  will switch around with different styles in the middle of games just to see if I can. 

No thumb is much easier to pull off than 2 handed bowling and doesn't require that much of a change in timing and approach.  You will pick up some speed and revs for sure.  Hardest thing to get used to is putting proper axis rotation on the ball so you don't roll it dead flat and track over the fingers and thumb hole.

A no-thumb bowler in my leagues averages +215 for years and uses a glove to improve his feel and get consistent axis rotation on the ball.  No wrist support glove, just a basic glove like for golf. 

I've tried that several times and I have to scale down to about a 10-pound ball before I find a weight my wrist can take. That goes all the way back to when I was a really young man, too. I've never had a lot of wrist strength and it was exacerbated by an injury I sustained as a kid.

I can hold a ball next to my side without a thumb in it and my wrist wants to catch fire. I support it with my off hand, and it instantly becomes painless. Relieving wrist pain is as important to me right now as improving my scoring.

Jess

JessN16

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 3597
Re: I'm 46, and I'm probably switching to 2-handed bowling.
« Reply #10 on: February 22, 2019, 10:48:58 PM »

I'm 57 and not ready to switch at all.  Here's why.  Too many two-handers are definitely rev-dominant.  Sure, they can create more area than I can, and some of those explosive strikes are really cool, but consistency seems to be the issue.  Because their new style allows for way more miss room (on typical house shots) they can sometimes really embarrass themselves on tougher patterns.  (I can definitely struggle there, too.) 

I'm no where as strong as I was in my 30s and 40s, but my mechanics are better most nights.  What's the difference?  A few lessons with Mike Jasnau.  I had developed a few things over time that were rather small, but just enough to cause inconsistency.  Am I "there" yet?  Not quite.  But my timing, balance and ball speed are much better and remind me of 20 years ago, but with LESS EFFORT.

Is it hard work?  Yes.  After my first lesson I saw SOME things get better and felt others were still "not quite".  After the second lesson there is a more clear vision of what can happen when it falls together.

The lessons are not cheap, but that's incentive for me to actually practice the right things and see results.   Mr. Jasnau is thorough and seems to love to helping people, which is a plus.  My ball speed is up, my timing is better, and my balance and ability to repeat shots is progressing well.  I consider it money invested in my bowling longevity.  Mike has also never missed a chance to rib me about using Big B instead of Storm...

Not everyone has a Jasnau close by, but if ever given a chance, take it.  Someday I might be making the switch to the "dark side", as everyone is talking about, but it's  a long way down the road if it happens.  Although I'm not anywhere near young, I feel a re-birth in my physical and mental approach to the game.  I enjoy it again.

Best of luck to all as we strive to excel at this crazy game.








That's certainly not bad advice but I've received lessons from several PBA members and top teachers. I get compliments frequently on how smooth my style currently looks, even if it isn't terribly high-scoring. I guess I did a poor job explaining in the initial post how key the pain issue is here. I've had several respected drillers work with me to lessen the pain of bowling, and I also have an AMF drill in my home and can experiment at my leisure; none of us have been able to fix this.

My fallback may be to go back to a hard metal wrist brace like a Robbys. I hate to do that, though, because my spare shooting and ability to adjust went up sharply when I dropped the wrist brace a few years back. What I'm lacking now is the ability to consistently strike (many times because my wrist position won't stay consistent), which hurts scoring, and then overall wrist stamina is poor.

Jess

JessN16

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 3597
Re: I'm 46, and I'm probably switching to 2-handed bowling.
« Reply #11 on: February 22, 2019, 10:52:16 PM »
It takes way more athleticism to be good at 2 handing than people think.

At 46 with a heart attack, weight gain, and nagging ailments you'd be better off taking some time off to focus on your health and come back when you can enjoy the game.

I get the sentiment but that's not going to happen. The only thing I can control there is better diet/weight management. The cardiac issue is medicinally controlled, but in doing so, it prevents me from having elective surgery on the wrist or knee. If I were to have surgery now, I have to stop the cardiac maintenance drugs for 3-5 weeks ahead of time, which then puts my heart at risk. I had to do that last year for an unrelated issue, and didn't stop them far enough ahead of time and ended up in an emergency, life-threatening situation due to internal bleeding. I won't risk that again.

Those "nagging ailments" are my new normal. The reason I'm open to trying a two-handed delivery is the areas of the body I hear are most affected negatively (back, hip) have never given me trouble.

The real key is whether I'm going to be able to generate enough ball speed without forcing it and hurting something as a result.

Jess

JessN16

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 3597
Re: I'm 46, and I'm probably switching to 2-handed bowling.
« Reply #12 on: February 26, 2019, 11:22:56 PM »
So tonight marked the first time I went into a bowling center and bowled two-handed for more than a shot or two. I bowled two practice games prior to league.

My first game, I bowled 32. Not 132. Not 232. Thirty...two. After three frames, I had a score of 1.

The second game went much better: 104, with four spares. Oddly enough, I found the thing a two handed delivery made easy was shooting straight at the 10-pin: you just don't turn the ball. Come straight up the back of it and it goes right down the target line.

My struggles in the first game were mainly due to me having to get used to two things, the change in angles and the fact I couldn't get any speed. I usually roll around the 16-17 mph range. I doubt I was doing more than 10 throwing two-handed. Coupled with the increase in revs, and all of a sudden everything was in the ditch by the 50-foot mark if not sooner.

For the second game, I finally moved as far left as I could (limited by the ball return, as I had been assigned Lane #2), and committed to moving my target to the right and further down the lane. I finally started to get the ball (sort of) where I wanted it to go.

I had found a pair of 14-pound balls to test this with, a Storm Dark Thunder and a Visionary Slate Blue Gargoyle. The DT was far too much ball. The SBG, which is urethane pearl, was the only thing I could keep on the correct pocket side, and even then it was a chore. I'm sitting here now sore on my right side at the beltline, and my left chest is sore from the pulling action of opening my shoulders at delivery. Also my right forearm was mildly sore for awhile. I can tell if I keep doing this that I'm going to have to figure out a way to open and clear the shoulders at delivery, or it's just not going to work. I have no idea what to do yet about the speed issue.

The other thing I realized is that, one- or two-handed, we are what we are to a large degree. The wrist position changes that work for a traditional approach have the same effects on a two-handed approach. If you're good at straightening the ball out as a one-hander, you can probably do it two-handed as well. There is no miracle cure here for flaws, but also your strengths don't automatically disappear.

Strangely enough, I had my best set of the season after I switched back to one-handed for league. My wrist release felt a little snappier. But I have tendon-related pain in my right wrist as I type this, which I usually do after league.

I'll keep working on this in practice. It's not going to be an overnight change.

Jess

JOE FALCO

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 6266
Re: I'm 46, and I'm probably switching to 2-handed bowling.
« Reply #13 on: February 27, 2019, 12:10:34 PM »
Thanks Jess .. I find all of it very interesting!
RIP Thongprincess/Sawbones!

Overhand

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 1046
Re: I'm 46, and I'm probably switching to 2-handed bowling.
« Reply #14 on: February 27, 2019, 12:47:42 PM »
In the interest of leaving no ball unthrown, how is your other wrist?  With such a large delivery overhaul maybe it's be easier to switch sides.  We've had a couple folk out here that have been successful going lefty.