Following a tasty sausage sizzle prepared by Bob Edwards and Chris Button, Di and Mark Green entertained an enthusiastic group of 20 bowlers (6 clubs) with a range of interesting bowling anecdotes and coaching tips.
The quality of their presentation was excellent and warranted a much larger audience
Lots of information was presented including segments on drills, preseason activities, trials, setting goals and positional play. Set out below are a few of their main points relating to etiquette and ‘mindfulness,’ and of relevance to all players.
Etiquette (Mark Green)
- Dress code – look like a bowler.
- Recognise good bowls and do not applaud poor bowls which produce a good result. In the latter case acknowledge as ‘A good result’.
- Acknowledge good bowls by your team members on adjacent rinks.
- Wait behind the mat for skip’s direction.
- Players should not move about if in the line of sight of a bowler about to bowl on your rink.
- Leave the green while the umpire is conducting a measure.
- A bowler must be behind the mat when their bowl stops at the other end of the green and should be mindful of not disturbing adjacent rinks, while watching the passage of their bowl travelling down the green.
- Once your team’s bowl stops the head belongs to the opposition. Your team must be out of the head and cease communication with players at the other end of the green.
- Be humble in victory and gracious in defeat.
- If you have to leave immediately after a game, mention this to your opposite number at the beginning of the game, otherwise it may appear you are a poor loser if you are defeated.
Mindfulness (Di Green)
- Di spoke at some length about the importance of having the ‘right mindset’ when bowling. Being focussed and attentive to bowls put down on your rink is essential. It is important to take time visualising the shot you are going to play. Breathe deeply 4 or 5 times while your opponent’s bowl is travelling and before you approach the mat. This will allow your heart rate time to settle and your mind to focus, prior to playing a shot.
- Research with Chinese Olympic Table Tennis players suggests that time spent ‘visualising’ the game can be just as valuable as time spent practising.
- To develop the mental angle of your game there is lots of information on the internet and a number of good books written by bowlers.
- One book which Di felt was particularly good is ‘Perfect Bowls’ by Peter Belliss and published by Celebrity Books. ISBN 978-187725-2303
- Thank you to Graham Evans for organising the evening and Mark and Di for their presentation.
- Malcolm Keller