This week we take a look at the Scorpion Pattern on the PBA, and discuss the results as well as talk about the mental side of the bowling. This is definitely one of the areas of the game I struggle the most with, like many bowlers out there. We will discuss ways to mentally attack the lanes, and do our best to help you fight off those mental demons.
First we will take a look at the Scorpion Pattern, some of its characteristics, and best way to attack the lane. The Scorpion Pattern is 41 feet in length and has a great saturation of oil. This will cause the ball to skid down the lane with little to no hook during the first 41 feet and then allow your ball to come back once it is threw the heavily saturated oil pattern. This pattern can be attacked from many different angles, and in this week’s case seemed to be the inside line. The key to this pattern is to consistently hit your mark because if you miss you could end up in the gutter. In fact this week Dave Wodka, the #2 seed in the tournament, did just that. Dave went through his normal pre-shot routine, and had trouble planting his front foot on the lanes. This caused his ball to miss his mark in the right and fall into the channel. From there Dave Wodka went on to make the 10 pin spare, and actually beat out one opponent to advance to the next round of the Eliminator format.
In the telecast this week Dave Wodka discussed some of his struggles in the past, and even admitted to having a sport psychologist. Dave explained that his sports psychologist help him understand that every shot is not the end of the world. More importantly he explained that “If you make a bad shot, let it go, it’s done, move on to the next one”. In the past I definitely have struggled with the mental side of the game, and like Dave thinking every shot could doom my series. More recently, however I have had great thoughts in my mind and it has lead to more successful bowling.
I will discuss some of the ways I have fended off the demons that have crept in my mind from time to time, and how to hone that in to great energy and more successful bowling. As I said in the past I have stepped up to the lanes and looked at that single pin spare, and for whatever reason had negative thoughts in my mind of “don’t miss this shot”, “don’t pull your shot”, or even “don’t let your team down”. If you have had similar thoughts as these we would like to hear your comments as to how you improved your mental game as well. I dramatically improved my mental game by simply thinking positive thoughts. I now think, “you’ve got this”, “you make this shot all the time”, and tell myself “focus on your mark” I have completely made myself aware of only thinking positive thoughts that sometimes if the negative thoughts creep in, even if I’m on the approach, I step completely off the approach and go through my pre-shot routine again and refocus. Another thing I done to take my focus off of myself is compliment the bowlers around me. I sincerely try to give guys on the other teams high fives, or compliment them verbally when they do make great shots. I also congratulate the teams that win throughout the year. There is something to be said about karma. If you give off great energy it will come back to you as well. I sincerely believe this to be true. So this week in league take me up on this challenge and compliment the bowlers around you, and tell me about your success stories of the good scores that you posted as well!
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Until next time, Shred that Rack!
What you say about having great thoughts is very true. I have been reading “With Winning in Mind” by Larry Bassham (I got the idea or reading this from Diandra Asbaty’s video blog). Inthe book he talks about focusing on the process instead of the outcome. So think about “hitting your mark” instead of “making the spare” is right on.
Also your comments on Karma make me think of Sean Rash who has been on almost all of the WSOB telecasts this season yet has not won. Surely he has some inner demons that are affecting his game.
Rick thanks for the comments! It’s funny you mention Rash, because I wanted to mention him in the column as I think he due for a win! Maybe he will channel his nerves on one of the biggest stages at the U.S. Open, and prove to everyone else hes a winner.