Bowling With Kids: A Fun Indoor Family Activity

Bowling - Family Activity for a Rainy Day

It’s a rainy day, your kids are bored and you’re looking for a family activity the whole group can enjoy. Why not head over to the bowling alley? With our tips, you will have a fun day with plenty of quality time!

For most people, bowling is the kind of unique sport that they only do every once in a while. Because it generally requires a trip to the bowling alley, it can be less common than other recreational indoor activities. But few sports afford the family fun that this one does! It also only takes a few rules to get to it and play the game. Another great benefit: While you’re sitting on the bench waiting for your turn to bowl, you have time to catch up with your spouse and kids.

Why Bowling Is a Sport for Everyone

Bowling might get a bad wrap for the kooky shoes. However, a few hours at the alley can be fun for everyone! One of the best parts of this sport is that the game takes very little time to learn. This is a reason why bowling alleys are also a popular spot for birthday parties or other informal events.

If you’re looking to be a professional, you’ll need to practice your form. But, if you’re just playing with your kids for fun you can simply enjoy seeing what you can knock down. 

What Are the Types of Bowling?

Most of us think of bowling as one sport, but there are actually a few different types of bowling you can try. Some of them are better to play with kids than others, but your family will surely find out their favorite way to bowl on your own.

  • 10-Pin Bowling– This is the traditional bowling style that makes everyone think of the famous game. It involves 10 pins that are approximately 3 pounds 7 ounces in weight, arranged in a triangle formation. Try to hit the center of the triangle with your bowling ball.

  • 9-Pin – It might sound like just 1 pin of differences, but 9-pin bowling is commonly a team game! Make sure the teams are equally mixed with kids and adult bowlers. In addition, the pins are organized in a diamond formation. Focus on the red center pin when you bowl the ball.

  • 5-Pin – This bowling tradition brings the sport right down to only 5-pins. Fortunately, arranged in a V-shape, these pins fly harder when the bowler hits them. So it’s easier to knock ‘em all down.

  • Candlepin Bowling– This bowling style was invented in Massachusetts and remains popular in the area. While the pins make a triangle, they’re thin like candles and are much harder to knock over!

  • Duckpin – The pins in this version are short and round so they’re a little easier to hit. However, the pins are lighter so it can be harder to get all of them down in one try.


How to Play: Bowling Tips for Families

Bowling might be one of the most fun group sports around. So we collected some bowling tips that may make for a game you can enjoy with your kids and friends. Be sure to share your own tips for scoring at the lanes on FamilyApp!

  • Ramps and Bumpers – Especially for smaller children or those with physical limitations, ramps are very useful to get the ball rolling. Bumpers are another great tool, even for adults who are just starting to bowl. They prevent the ball from falling from the lane into the gutter which will keep the motivation and fun in your family bowling day.
  • Don’t Focus on the Pins – The first instinct of a new bowler might be to look at the pins. However, this is not going to help you get a good bowl. Instead, focus on the arrows as this will help you direct your ball so it hits the right spot.
  • Keep Your Arm Straight – It’s important to stay relaxed when you’re bowling so you don’t stress yourself out over your swing. However, that doesn’t mean that your throw should lack control. Keep your arm and wrist straight so you can control the direction of the ball and avoid the gutter. 
  • Find Your Bowling Style – Getting a good hit is all about feeling comfortable before you throw the bowling ball. If you need to take more time on your approach to prepare for your swing, do it!
  • Watch the Professionals – Whether you participate in a league or simply take to the lanes, seeing how professionals do it is key! You can easily observe their movements and get tips for your own bowling swing. Once you have some insights, try the moves for yourself!

Go Bowl!

If you’ve never tried to bowl, now’s your chance to test out this fun sport! Whether you opt for traditional 10-pin or duckpin bowling, it takes little learning to get out there and bowl the ball. Do you have any tips for bowling with kids? Share them with other parents in our comments! While we can’t guarantee a strike or a spare, there’s a pretty good chance everyone will have fun at the alley!

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