Corner Pin Spare Shooting Bowling Tips

Learn How to Make More Corner Pins While Bowling

Spare shooting is the glue to your game. Missing a 7-pin or a 10-pin costs you 11 pins off of your possible score. The more you cover spares, the more confidence you’ll have to your next shot. Overall, your frustration level will be lower. But it is dramatically overlooked in the game today because strong equipment has increased strike percentage significantly. At a higher level, when you see people struggle with lane conditions, it becomes apparent how critical good spare shooting is to the game. The majority of lessons I give with bowlers for bowlers between 150 and 180 is because they do not make their spares very consistently.

Corner pins are right next to the gutter and can be a little intimidating because people think that you have a very small margin of error to make a single pin. The bowling ball is 8.5 inches wide and the bowling pin at the widest base is 4.75 inches. If you think about it in terms of room on the lane, you realistically have about 12 inches of miss area when you’re going for a single pin.

So what’s the key to good spare shooting? It’s about repetition. Some people don’t practice their spares enough to be repetitive enough. When going for a single pin or corner pin, the way that I figure out where to stand is to go for same pin ten times in a row. If you miss one of those shots, you start over until you make ten 10 pins or ten 7 pins in a row. Everybody is different, so there isn’t one ideal place to stand. You can see in the video, you can see that I stand more left for my 10 pin (board 27) and more right (board 11) for my 7 pin. That’s my specific spot, you could be on board 26, 31, or others. It doesn’t matter where you stand, as long as you can be consistent. You can figure out where to stand and then get comfortable repeating shots.

There are a plethora of drills and other recommendations that can help you learn to shoot spares. There are some standards to look at when working on spares. I will always recommend anybody to throw a spare ball, especially at corner pins. Some people will throw a reactive ball end over end to kill the ball’s hook. I’d rather keep things simple. Spare balls are reasonably priced and have a plastic coverstock. They do not hook unless there are extreme dry conditions. Urethane balls can also be acceptable, as they hook a little but not as much as a reactive ball.

If you find yourself making below 75% of spares, I’d recommend working on this at least once a week. If you are disciplined enough, bring only your spare ball in for practice that day. Try ten 10 pins in a row and ten 7 pins a row. You can also play low ball: in one game, you’re trying to score as low as possible. If you can make the 10 pin off of a full rack and the 7 pin off a full rack, you’d get 2 per frame. Therefore, a perfect game would be 20.

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