Whatever you want to call it, a spare ball, second ball, or even a backup ball, having an additional bowling ball for the purpose of picking up spares, is a good thing to have in your bowling arsenal. Granted recreational and weekend bowlers probably don’t need to invest in one but anyone in a league will find having a spare ball pretty much a necessity.
Now having a strike ball or high performance bowling ball is essential for getting strikes since they hook. But there are times when we are left with a shot that is impossible to make with a ball with a high hook potential. For example, when you leave the 7 or 10 pin standing. When you need a precision shot, it’s often best to bowl with a ball that doesn’t curve but rolls straight and true.
Bowling is a sport that doesn’t really allow much room for error like for example in basketball. Basketball players are only limited by time, and the opposing team of course, to make as many shots as they can within 60 minutes. In bowling, we are not limited by time but by frames. Our goal is not to make as many shots as possible but to make as few as possible. 12 rolls to get a perfect game. Unfortunately this is easier said than done. We can’t always get every single pin on the first roll so we have to rely on our second roll. That’s where the spare ball comes into play.
In addition to the single position scenario mentioned earlier, many split combinations require a precise hit in order to pick up the spare. A good example would be a 5-10 split. This is especially difficult for right handed bowlers as the right edge of the lane doesn’t allow enough room for a hooking balls path to track. But with a spare bowling ball, you have a better chance of making the shot by following a straight path right between the pins slightly towards the 5 pins right side. This will result in a deflection towards the 10 pin and the spare pick up.
The great thing about buying a spare ball is that, even though, they are all mainly the same, there is still a wide variety to choose from in terms of the look of the ball. Also, many of them are a great way to personalize your style and attitude. Brunswick Viz-A-Ball line is the perfect example as you can get balls with skulls, flames, favorite sports team, and even cartoons.
So if you want to maximize your bowling score, then you want to look into purchasing a spare ball. It gives you more versatility in making your shots and increases your scoring potential.