Bowling Exercise – Everything you need to know

Bowling is a sport meant for everyone, and it is one of the most enjoyable sports in existence. Of course, it is a hobby, and to others, it is a professional, but we all can agree that bowling is a great exercise in itself.

You might be wondering, does bowling actually count as an exercise, and if yes, how; Well, if that’s what’s on your mind, then you’re in the right place because that’s precisely what I’m here to tell you.

This article will talk to you about bowling, how it works as an exercise, what muscles it activates, and the kinds of exercises you should use to become better equipped to bowl. So, make sure you read this article till the very end.

Bowling Exercise

Does Bowling Count as Exercise?

Well, any physical sport that happens to activate your muscles to some extent is considered an exercise. By that definition, bowling also counts as an exercise and a decent one at that. It is not the most intense workout, but it can produce great results for the body and metabolism if opted for regularly. Bowlers tend to live very healthy lives, and if they bowl regularly, they can enjoy a bundle of health benefits.

A bowler can lose a decent number of calories by bowling hours at a time. Doctors also approve of the sport because it comes with its physical benefits and advantages. Bowling is a simple to learn sport. There is a lot to learn, but learning can be done at any stage. Pairing simplicity with health benefits is precisely how you get people on board with a game, and that is why bowling is getting popular again throughout the world.

What Kind of Exercise is Bowling?

Bowling is considered an anaerobic exercise. This means that it is like walking with free weights as it burns a few of your calories and at the same time exercises some of the muscle groups not usually active. If measured by a scale, bowling would lie somewhere in the light exercise category, meaning that it is not a very strenuous or intense workout, but it gets the job done pretty well.

An average bowler can lose up to 150 to 200 calories by bowling for an hour, depending upon the extent of their applied force and the effort that they have exerted while bowling. So bowling can be pretty good for you if you continue to perform the sport and invest your effort into it. Give it a chance, and you are surely going to start loving the health gains.

Physical Benefits of Bowling

If you are wondering what exact health benefits bowling brings as it is counted as an exercise, here is a list of the physical benefits of bowling that you should know about.

Better Metabolism

Bowling is an exercise that continuously keeps you on your feet. If you regularly adopt bowling as an exercise, you will develop a much better overall metabolism.


When you are bowling, you are swinging your arms back and forth and moving your legs, and this movement can create a bit of flexibility in your body as you continue bowling.

Stronger Muscles

A bowling ball weighs fourteen pounds or so; holding it, walking with it, and moving it around would strengthen your muscles and increase your physical endurance.

Improved Circulation

Not only does bowling improve your heart rate, but because of this physical activity, your body also circulates blood better which can lead to an overall healthier body and mind.

Which Muscles are Activated in Bowling?

So, you are thinking of adopting bowling as an exercise activity because of how fun it is; Well, you must want to know which muscles bowling activates precisely to become better at the sport and use it for physical gains and health maintenance. So, let us look at the muscle groups affected by bowling and how they work in bowling.

Upper and Lower Back

When you are swinging the bowling ball back and forth, your upper and lower back are in extension. You need to have a strong core if you are thinking of swinging the ball without developing pain and discomfort.


On the backswing, you are taking your arm completely backward, tensing your triceps, and working them; this is why having strong triceps would benefit your backswing and reduce the risk of any potential injury you might face.


As you bring the ball forward, you curl your bicep and use this muscle’s force to throw the bowling ball forward. Having a strong arm can help your bowling ball throw.

Chest Muscles

While you are holding the bowling ball and when you are throwing it, you are exerting your chest and bicep force into the ball and pushing it. For that, a strong pumped chest can help a lot.


Throughout the movement and throw, you are moving your legs, and you are even bending, which activates your quadriceps and other leg muscles, so train them to avoid any injury.

All these muscles are utilized when you bowl. Ensure you are working on these muscles to make them more vital not to end up suffering an injury that may risk your career.

Workouts and Exercises for Bowlers

No matter what you might think, bowling is a proper physical exercise, one where you can get hurt if you’re not prepared. This can be due to physical inactivity.

It can be due to low arm muscle strength, and it can also be due to not stretching or exercising before you bowl, which, to be honest, is quite important whether you are thinking of bowling casually or professionally.

If you wonder what kind of exercises need to be done to make your body ready for bowling and not get an injury, here is a list of the muscles you need to work out before going to a bowling alley.

Exercise for Strengthening the Arm for Bowling

Arm strength is a significant factor when it comes to bowling. The simple reason for that is if you are an adult, the regular ten-pin bowling ball is going to weigh around 12-16 pounds, and trust me; it is not a cakewalk when you are not used to holding and throwing such a big ball at a bunch of pins till now.
So, that is why doing bicep and triceps exercises like dumbbell curls, overhead extensions, and such would do great exercises for working the arm muscles to be strong enough for you to easily hold and then maneuver the bowling ball as you throw it.

Squats for Bowling

Bowling requires you to be strong in both your upper body and lower body. Your legs carry all the weight while your lower back will support you and curl when bending to make your throw.

For these reasons, you need an exercise that will work multiple muscles and get you in good shape to bowl soon. Squats are what we are looking for. Stretching your arms forward and squatting will work all the necessary muscles of your body so that they can strengthen and you can be ready to bowl. This will surely be one of the better exercises as per your requirement.

Cardio for Bowling

Cardio is one of the exercises that is beneficial for all kinds of workouts. Whether you are a bowler or a baseball player, cardio will help you increase your stamina, raise your endurance, and help you run faster, and keep a good metabolism while you are doing that.

As a bowler, you need to have decent stamina. You will not have to run or anything like that, but if you are bowling with someone, you are going to have to exert effort and put in your strength, and if you do not have a lot of stamina, you won’t be able to keep up with the opponents.

Stretching Before Bowling

If you are new to bowling or have not bowled in quite a while, the natural right thing would be to get your body and muscle groups ready for the workout you are about to engage in.

Well, stretching your muscles is one way to go. Extend your arms up and stretch them, roll your wrists and elbows. Make lunges so you can stretch your legs as well. Do similar stretching exercises for your whole body, and then you can bowl without injury risk. However, make sure you do not overwork yourself if you are still not used to bowling often.


Bowling is a fantastic activity whether you are professionally pursuing it or love it for a hobby and a physical exercise. But bowling without proper training and stretching can be a little excessive for any new bowler. That is why training your muscles to hold the heavy bowling ball, throw it, and increase overall endurance is an essential part of the game. I hope you learned a lot from this article and that you will employ all these tricks and tips in your next bowling games. Have a fantastic bowling career with lots of success!

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