As the years go by, more and more honor scores are being bowled, be it 300s, 800s, and, yes, even 900s. This has angered some of the true, old school purists, but what we must understand is that sports – all sports – are changing, and changing rapidly at that. In golf, players are hitting the ball farther than ever. In tennis, forehands are being cracked back and forth at a much faster speed than ever before. And in baseball, basketball, and football, athletes are getting bigger, faster, stronger, and more athletic every single year. If your child or young sibling is interested in playing tennis, you can give them the best junior tennis racquets so they can be comfortable while playing.
The fact of the matter is this: we are changing. Yes, you, me, your teammates, and the rest of society. Whether we care to admit it or not, we are ever growing and rapidly advancing. And this is generally looked upon as a good thing in life and other sports. So why is it that when our sport, the sport we love, changes and progresses, we view it as a negative? Why should bowlers be any different?
There is very little denying that recreational bowling has gotten easier; I do not think that anyone would argue otherwise. And, yes, honor scores are becoming the norm rather than an accomplishment, but I ask this: is it really that big of a deal? How often do you hear Roger Federer complaining about how fast the tennis balls are traveling? When was the last time Tom Brady complained that his teammates were getting too fast? Have you seen any recent articles where Jack Nicklaus is whining about how much farther his successors are hitting the golf ball? Again I ask: why should bowlers be any different?
Rather than moaning and complaining every time the sport changes, why don’t we accept it, embrace it for what it is, and adapt like the rest of the sports world? Bowling balls, just like drivers and racquets, aren’t going to regress. Science is ever evolving, bowling balls are going to continue to hook more, hit harder, and allow scores to reach new heights. It is just the way it is. It is simply out of our control. We must embrace it and accept it if we are to continue to grow as a sport.
I say this, to each and every bowler: I challenge you to accept bowling for what is. Not what it once was. Not what it might be. But, rather, for what it is. The game will be more fun, bowlers will be more welcoming of one another, and the sport will grow.