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What is SKILL Bowling?

In SKILL Bowling, the bowler takes full responsibility for the ball's motion as non-flaring balls and low-volume oil patterns are used. This means that success in knocking down pins depends heavily on the bowler's ability to hit their mark and control ball speed and rotation, as there is little assistance from the ball or lane pattern.


Does it work?  It certainly doesn’t hurt.

Since its launch in 2013, bowlers with SKILL Bowling experience have earned scholarships at Junior Gold at a rate 250% higher than all other bowlers, and 96% of SKILL Bowling alumni believe it helps them in all of their bowling endeavors!

SKILL Bowling delivers an enhanced learning environment where students can master the sport.


The SURVIVAL SKILLS program utilizes three tools:

  • Bowling balls that do not flare or absorb oil.

  • Low-volume SKILL oil patterns

  • SKILL Drill videos 


Bowling Balls
SKILL Bowling utilizes neutral bowling balls, meaning the cores create little flare, and the coverstocks do not absorb oil. As a result, participants must learn how to manipulate their release to achieve the desired ball motion. Though participants in the Teen Masters Championships are limited to the pearl urethane SKILL 3.02, any polyester ball with a differential of .020 or less, and any urethane ball with a differential of .010 or less are suitable for use in the SURVIVAL SKILLS programs. Balls that meet this criteria include:

  • SKILL 2.0, 3.0, and 3.02

  • Brunswick T-Zone

  • Columbia White Dot

  • DV8 Polyester

  • Ebonite Maxim

  • Motiv Laser Sniper

  • Storm Ice or Mix

Oil Patterns

During bowling competitions, the impact of bowling balls on oil patterns is significantly reduced with SKILL Bowling. As a result, the amount of oil required to protect the lane has been reduced. In the 2022 and 2023 Teen Masters Championships, a little over eight milliliters of oil was enough for twenty-seven games and thirty minutes of practice. Click HERE for details.

As the standard SURVIVAL SKILLS program will consist of thirty minutes of SKILL Drills and three games of league play per lane, a library of SKILL patterns using five to seven milliliters of oil will be provided to participating centers.

SKILL Drill Videos

In 2013, the launch of the SKILL Bowling initiative was accompanied by a SKILL Drill video series. The original series is still available on YouTube with nearly one million views, but it is being updated and reformatted. The new videos will be available by February 1, 2024.

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