Bowling is a great form of exercise for seniors that improves balance and helps to maintain strength. But choosing a good ball can be difficult so today I will tell you what is the best bowling ball for seniors.
In a hurry? Here’s my recommendation:
Some people think about bowling as a pastime for drinking bear with the buddies but it’s actually pretty good exercise. It involves a high skill component but it’s relatively easily to learn the basics.
Bowling is becoming more popular among seniors because it’s relatively low impact, social and easy to learn. What’s a better way to spend your time than hanging out with friends and exercising?
If you have been to a bowling alley before, you will know there are usually a ton of different balls to choose from. The problem with in house balls is that they are often worn and can even have sharp cracks around the finger holes.
It’s also very hard for beginners to choose a ball that is correct weight and with correct size holes. Having a too heavy ball can be potentially dangerous and too tight or loose holes will be very uncomfortable on your fingers and will throw your game off.
The bowling balls in the bowling alley can also be fairly unhygienic as they are used by hundreds of people and aren’t really washed in between.
This is why it’s wise to get a ball of your own once you know you like the activity and want to continue it. But choosing a ball can be very hard. if you don’t know what to look for.
Best Bowling Ball For Seniors
There are few considerations you need to take into account as a senior when picking a bowling ball. I’d like to point out that my recommendation will be for relatively inexperienced bowlers picking their own ball. If you are a pro or an advanced player I’m sure you already know what you are looking for (my recommendation for advanced seniors is the Hammer Black Widow).
The first consideration is weight. Bowling balls come in various weights, typically ranging between 8 lbs and 16 lbs. The weight affects your ball speed which is very important for knocking over the pins.
Typically a stronger player can use a heavier ball while maintaining good ball speed. A heavier ball will have more kinetic energy and will be more stable but the downside is that it requires strength to maintain control and which makes you more susceptible to injuries.
A good rule to remember is that a bowling ball should weigh at most 10% of your body weight. So naturally your own size will affect how large ball you should use but for most seniors, I recommend choosing something that’s on the lighter side.
A lighter ball will allow you to maintain control and achieve a better ball speed, which more important than having weight behind the ball.
Another important factor for beginners and seniors is durability. Beginners drop and overthrow balls much more often than advanced players. This can also happen more commonly with seniors due to reduced grip strength and muscle control.
A durable ball will not suffer damage from falling. Some balls are surprisingly fragile and can even split if you throw it too high. Other balls can be pretty resistant from splitting and cracking but can deform significantly which makes them useless.
A durable ball will keep it form and won’t crack when you accidentally drop it on the lane or during the
Since most seniors will have a slower ball speed, you will want a ball that doesn’t have an aggressive cover stock. This will allow the ball to slide much better and retain as much of the speed on the lane as possible. It’s harder to throw hooks but it’s much easier to throw consistent strikes.
My recommendation for a bowling ball for seniors is the Pyramid Path Polyester bowling ball.
It’s a medium weight, highly durable ball that doesn’t have an aggressive cover stock. The ball is perfect for straight shots with slower speeds due to its low friction polyester cover stock.
The ball has a superb average score of 4.6 out of 5.0 at Amazon and most users are praising it for its accuracy and consistency. The ball seems to be extremely durable as there was only one report of a split ball (this happens with all balls).
The ball is designed for dry lanes and straight shots, which makes it perfect for inexperienced bowlers. The ball is available in 12 different colors that are just spectacular. This is a beautiful ball that you will definitely fall in love with once you see it live.
The ball is also very affordable at below $50 which makes it perfect for beginners. You shouldn’t invest too much in a bowling ball until you know what you really prefer. This ball will make standard bowling techniques very enjoyable and improves your game without breaking the bank.
Is Bowling Good Exercise For Seniors?
In case you are wondering if bowling is actually a good form of exercise for seniors and if it’s safe, I’m glad to tell you that it’s actually an excellent form of exercise for seniors.
Bowling is very safe if you choose the correct equipment like a correct weight and finger size ball and good bowling shoes. Of course, there is always the change of slipping or spraining a joint in your arm but if you choose the correct equipment, warm-up and take your time learning the proper technique, bowling is an exceptionally safe form of exercise for seniors.
Besides being safe it’s incredibly good for balance, coordination and strength. The fact that you are swinging a heavy ball to hurl it down the lane while aiming at the pins means you are challenging almost all the muscles of your body, your eye to hand coordination and balance.
Maintaining and improving balance and strength is very important for older adults because these will decline rapidly with age unless you use them.
Strength and balance are essentially what allows you to maintain independence and freedom in old age because the second you lose your ability to walk long distances, you become dependent on other peoples help.
Recreational activities like bowling, golf, kayaking, cycling, etc. are great for maintaining your balance skills. When you combine these with strength training you will be able to maintain your strength and balance in old age with additional health benefits.
Besides physical benefits, bowling is a great form of social activity. Many seniors suffer from loneliness and lack of social connections. A hobby like bowling is a great excuse to see your friends or to meet new ones. Having an enjoyable social life is extremely important for your mental health and well being.
Bowling also requires using your cognitive skills. There is definitely a component of strategy and planning, as well as competition and calculating which all help you keep your mind active. Using your brain is just as important as you age as using your body.
Good Bowling Technique for Older Adults
Seniors often have flexibility and mobility issues and other physical limitations. You have to take these into account when bowling so that you don’t
The most important thing is to stretch and warm-up before your first throws. This allows your connective tissues and muscles to adjust to the coming work.
Most seniors will benefit from striving for consistency over technical throws. So instead of learning to throw perfect hooks, which require a lot of ball speed, you should aim to improve the consistency of your straight shots. This way you can achieve high scores even with reduced mobility and slow ball speeds.
Bowling Accessories For Seniors
If you do decide to get your own ball, there are a couple of other accessories you might be interested in.
High-quality bowling shoes are important for safety and performance. Bowling shoes have smooth soles so some of them can be very slippery. My recommendation is to buy a pair from a trusted manufacturer as some cheap bowling shoes can be dangerously slippery. A simple slip during a throw can cause you to twist your back or hip, leaving you injured for a long time.
Wrist supports are great for reducing discomfort in the wrist while bowling. Many seniors find that bowling can aggravate their wrists, especially in the beginning. Wrist support will take some of the strain of your wrist, reducing the discomfort significantly and giving you more control.
Bowling Ball bag helps you to carry your ball and keep it clean. It will also protect it from falling as carrying a bowling ball can be relatively dangerous because they are slippery.
I hope you found my recommendations for the best bowling ball for seniors useful and will try it your self. If you have any questions, please leave them in the comments section below.
Bowling is a great low impact and social form of exercise for seniors that helps you improve your balance and functional strength.
Choosing the right equipment is especially important for senior bowlers to make the game enjoyable and safe. Choosing a ball that isn’t too heavy and works well with slow ball speeds makes bowling for seniors that much more enjoyable.
That goes with the additional accessories as well. Especially good shoes with enough friction are very important for safety.
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See you next time!