By Michael Cousins
Every time a customer comes into the shop looking for a new ball, the first thing they ask me is “what ball should I get?”
I am pretty sure you have all heard this, been that customer, or been in my shoes as the pro shop operator.
But what is the answer? I mean, that is a pretty loaded question, right?
Obviously there are a ton of variables to include in the equation, such as ball speed, rev rate, axis rotation, axis tilt, PAP, the bowlers need, etc. But, after all of those are determined and an answer has been thoroughly thought out, what does one say? What does the bowler WANT to hear?
I have customers, for example that, despite my opinion and suggestion, will only throw one particular brand. While this is fine and generally just a personal preference, there are some who believe they have to avoid other brands, as they are inferior in terms of performance.
This is false. Period.
As a pro shop operator, it is my job to put my customer in the best possible piece of equipment to best match what it is that they’re looking for. Sometimes that is Roto Grip, sometimes that is Motiv, other times it is one of the Ebonite International brands.
Today, all bowling balls are created equal.
Sure, there are some balls and companies that match up with some better than others, but that does not make other brands inferior; it makes them different, which is a good thing.
As a full-time pro shop manager, I can tell you that I personally sell everything. I stock everything. I promote everything. I am going to sell whatever best suits my customer’s needs.
The reason I do this? Simple. Today’s bowling balls, all bowling balls, are good. And they’re getting better and better with every passing release.
Every company offers great, quality products. Every single one. From Brunswick to Storm and everything in between. It is okay to have favorites, it is fine to promote one brand more than the other, but it isn’t okay to demean or talk poorly about any other company, whether you’re a staffer, pro shop operator, a customer, or anyone, for that matter.
I am not going to lie and tell you that some bowling balls don’t match up for certain games better than others. That has and always will be the case. And that is fine. But just because a particular brand matches up with your game better than another company doesn’t mean that that other company is bad or inferior.
So do me a favor, next time you’re considering getting a new ball, be open minded. Try something new. Talk to your local pro shop operator. Find out if a brand that you might not have considered before might be right for you. Every company offers a variety of shapes and performance options.