Point-counterpoint: Is bowling a sport? – The McGill Tribune

    This week the McGill Tribune brought an incredibly contentious topic to the debating floor: Is bowling a sport? the answer is less clear than you think.

    Reading: Is bowling a sport

    bowling is like any other sport

    gabe nisker

    Bowling, on a superficial level, seems pretty approachable: Grab some friends, beer, and a pair of clown shoes and head down the alley. but that’s where the professional bowlers association fools you. its design is accessible, but once you’re in, you’re in. Beneath the surface, the sport, yes it is a sport, is cutthroat, competitive and challenging to the highest degree.

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    Bowling is probably the oiliest sport there is, but that slippery quality makes it even more difficult for one to succeed. Each bowling alley is coated in oil to prevent it from catching fire. most recreational bowling uses a “house” liner, which helps channel the ball toward the center of the lane for greater shot success. Professional bowling uses a “sports” pattern, a more even distribution of oil on the surface that allows for a small margin of error, making each throw an accurate calculation.

    According to nick bonahan, the sports performance specialist for the united states bowling congress, being an elite athlete alone is not enough to make you an elite bowler. however, elite bowlers are always elite athletes with impressive leg strength, flexibility, balance and control. its adaptability makes each shot, unique due to the changing surface of the oil, a different challenge that bowlers are well equipped to handle. The mental and physical difficulty of throwing bowling balls at about 20 miles per hour regularly for 10 frames should not be underestimated. the combination of mental and physical makes bowling similar to other sports, such as hockey or basketball, whose legitimacy as a sport is never in question.

    Reading: Is bowling a sport

    bowling is just a casual weekend activity

    armstrong check

    according to the cambridge dictionary, a sport is “a game, competition or activity requiring physical exertion and skill that is played or performed according to the rules, for enjoyment and/or as work”.

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    Bowling is played according to the rules and can be played for pleasure or work, but requires almost no physical effort. Many people compare the physical exertion of bowling to the established sport of golf, but in reality, golf is noticeably more physical. the only movements required to master bowling are walking a few steps and rolling a ball less than 20 meters down a slippery surface. almost anyone can do it. in golf, however, a player must be able to hit a ball almost 180 meters to be considered good. this requires a hugely forceful swing that not everyone can pull off, and that’s the key difference between the two activities.

    This is not to say that there is no skill to be seen in bowling: obviously there is a gap between the good bowlers and the bad ones. however, the skills used in bowling are overwhelmingly mental, much like the game of chess, which is decidedly not a sport. Knowing where to throw the ball and how much spin to apply is much more important than how hard you throw the ball, which is why players almost always take strikes in professional games: they know exactly where to throw the ball. however, knowing where to put the bowling ball is not a physical skill. Since bowling’s skill set is overwhelmingly mental, rather than physical, it should be considered a fun activity for all ages, but not a sport.

    Reading: Is bowling a sport

    editor’s pick

    Bowling is an activity not generally associated with superhuman athleticism or intense competition and cash prizes. but the reality is that these two elements that are intrinsic to professional sport exist in bowling. bowling is a sport and should be given due respect.

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