Turning your wrist to the right or left makes a ball curve.
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Whether you're a novice or a veteran bowler, the straight ball approach is important in the game. Straight ball bowling allows you to concentrate on the other influential factors that can make the difference between a high score and a low score - such as your form, release and timing. Even fingertip bowlers with those curved throws occasionally switch back to straight ball for pesky seven and tenpin corners. But to hit the pins, you need to use the right fundamentals of bowling.
Lighter balls are better for curved throws - not straight. Therefore, use a heavier ball that can hold a direct path. Choose a ball weight that is still comfortable for you. You should be able to freely swing the ball back and forth and maintain a decent grip inside the finger holes. Start out with a lighter ball - such as an 8-pound ball - and slowly work up to heavier ball weights as your comfort level grows.
There are three ways to grip a ball - conventional, semi-fingertip and fingertip - but conventional grips offer more control for straight ball bowlers. For conventional grips, place your fingers into the holes from the second joint of your finger and down to the tip. Place your fingers into the ball's holes and span your remaining index and small fingers out as wide as you can. Use your free hand to cup the ball in front of you when you get into the starting position.
As you swing the ball - bringing it from the front of your body to the back and toward your release - your entire body needs to be aligned properly. Stand up straight in the starting position. Angle your shoulders and ball toward your target. For a first shoot, angle your shoulders and arm slightly to the left or right - depending on which hand you throw with - so that your body is aiming toward the pocket. Bring the ball back straight, keeping your shoulders square. Don't drop the shoulder swinging the ball; this can move your throw off alignment and send the ball right into the gutter.
The ball is released at the foul line. For straight bowlers, your release should be aligned with the target. All three fingers release from the ball at the same time and your wrist remains straight. Practice by releasing the ball and bringing your palm up to your forehead after release. This keeps your follow through and form, but also gets you in the practice of keeping your wrist and hand straight during the release.