Just like any sport, bowling can become complex when you start evolving in the physical side of the game. Whether you are developing physical technique (everything before the foul line) or becoming experienced and skilled in lane play, lane transition adjustments, ball motion tools, etc (everything over the foul line), bowling can become a very complex and challenging game. Let's start using the motto: "Do simple better."
These 10 Peak Performance Strategies will help you deal simply with the simplexity of playing the game. You need to give 100% without trying too hard, focus on the process and bowl to win. Remember, keep the process greater than your outcome. Here are the 10 Peak Performance Strategies for Success:
10 Peak Performance Strategies for Success
1. Keep Your Controllables Greater Than Your Uncontrollables
One of the most powerful choices a bowler can make to improve his/her performance is to focus his/her energy on things he/she can control. Things like self talk, breathing, attitude, pre and post shot routines, etc. Avoid uncontrollables at all times (winning, scores, lane conditions, teammates, competitors, etc.)
2. Keep Your Learning Greater Thank Your Experience
A growth mindset player sees bowling as more than success or failure experience. He approaches each competition as an opportunity to grow and learn. There are only two outcomes in bowling: Win and Learn.
3. Keep Your Process Greater Than Your Outcomes
The core component or centerpiece to our sport is to “work the process”. Keeping the process greater than your outcome simplifies the game, slows it down, and puts you in control.
4. Keep This Shot Greater Than Any Other
Bowling is played one shot at a time physically but few players at any level play the game that way. Going all in with your focus on each shot - treating each shot as a separate event in the game reduces the challenge you face. Most of the negative emotions in bowling are caused by energy directed at shots other than the current shot. Your mindset should be: “I am a one shot warrior.”
5. Keep Your Mission Greater Than Your Feelings
Keeping your Mission greater than your feelings is a game-changer in our sport because the default setting for us athletes is to perform the way we feel. You are not going to feel 100% all the time. If you feel a bit lost, or you feel you only have 70% of your physical game in a tournament, you must give 100% of what you do have toward winning the battle on every shot (give 100% of the 70% you currently have). Compete with whatever skill set you have on that day.
6. Keep Competing Greater Than Complying
Compete - compete - compete! Playing all in to win the shot is our ultimate mission. Focus on process but do it with passion and commitment bursting from your desire to win. Don’t think that winning isn’t important just because it’s an uncontrollable. Win the shot! Win the game! Win the tournament! Go out and give 100% of what you’ve got on each shot in an effort to win. Keep Competing Greater Than Complying. That’s where the fun is!
7. Keep Your Connection Greater Than Your Perfection
One of the top cripplers of peak performance in bowling is trying to be perfect. Your efforts to play perfectly usually cut your chances of playing well. When you are bowling well, everything seems to just fit together (your mechanics feel smooth, effortless). Your mindset is present and you’re confident in all your moves. But when you are struggling you start thinking about 100 things wrong with your mechanics and you’re trying to do all them just right. Take a moment to stop, take a deep breath and remind yourself: “Connection, not perfection.”
8. Keep Your Quality Greater Than Your Quantity
Success doesn’t come from “putting in your time” practicing. It comes from quality practicing. What is your Mission for today’s practice? Ask yourself: “what would I like to get out of today’s practice?” Develop a practice plan for every practice with a Mission. You must also compete in practice. Choose a time in practice to compete against something or someone. Remember, you are responsible for the quality of your training.
9. Keep Your Pleasure Greater Than Your Pressure
Why do you bowl? You love it? It’s fun? You will play near your potential when you play with joy, passion and freedom. You play poorly when you play with tension, doubt, pressure and fear. Keep your pleasure greater than your pressure. Remind yourself that you are unique and a valuable person no matter how you perform. Love it!
10. Keep You Greater Than Your Performance
Some bowlers are driven by an intense fear of failure and they achieve great things as a result. How much fun is this? With this mindset you are only one shot, game or tournament away from losing confidence, self-image, positive self talk and growth as a player. You will have a lot less stress to deal with if you keep YOU greater than your performance. Focus on your controllables and not your outcomes!