What I’d wish I had known before I started

A helpful booklet on all aspects of Clontarf Golf and Bowling Club.

Put together by Ann Louise Mulhall to help new and some not so new members to realise all the club has to offer.

Delve in here and discover for yourself what you wish you had known before you started.


Clontarf Bowling Club 

Clontarf Bowling Club Green and Clubhouse to the right, Clontarf Golf Club behind. 


 Clontarf Bowling Club logo

Welcome to Clontarf Bowling Club 

Clontarf Bowling Club has a reputation for friendliness, encouragement and interest in the  development of bowling skills and expertise of its members of all ages. Bowling members have access to facilities in Golf Clubhouse: Bar, Members Bar, West Wing, Restaurant, Television Room, Toilets and Changing Rooms. An entrance card available from the receptionist, this is only available to full members. Bowling Members can join the Bridge, Poker, Snooker clubs and attend social events organised by the CBGC Social Committee. 

Clontarf Bowling Club (CBC) was founded in 1925. It is part of Clontarf Golf and Bowling Club. CBC was a founding member of Bowling League of Ireland (BLI) (governing body for men’s bowling). Women players became members of the bowling club  in 1996. CBC is also affiliated to the Irish Women’s Bowling Association which is the  governing body for the sport of women’s bowls in Ireland. The club is a member of the Ladies Bowling League of Ireland (LBLI). Our members compete in the league and  championship competitions of the LBLI and BLI which involve 19 bowling clubs in the  Dublin area. We are honoured that Clontarf will hold the Presidency of LBLI in 2022 and  BLI in 2025. Clontarf Bowling Club will celebrate our centenary in 2025. 

As a new member this information sheet will give you the answers to questions that new  members often ask. 

1) What is the Structure of the Bowling Club?- Page 3 

2) What is the calendar of events both club and social?- Page 5 

3) What equipment do I need and where do I get it? -Page 7 

4) What are the rules of bowling?- Page 11 

5) What competitions are played in the club and outside?- Page 13 

6) Tips for bowling well- Page 19-23. 

7) Terminology- Page 22-25 

In 2021 due to the Covid -19 pandemic the calender of club and social events has been curtailed and is reviewed as restrictions are lifted by the Government. Members are kept informed by email. Access to the Bowling Club premises is limited to use of lockers. The bowling rinks are opened as designated by Bowling Committee. Use can be booked on Clontarf Golf Club.ie/bowling club website-click here to book a rink. Social bowling on Tuesday & Friday at 13 30 will commence when restrictions are lifted. Club competitions are being organised by Denis Murphy (Club & BLI competitions) and Ann Louise Mulhall & Lynne Foy (LBLI). BLI League Competitions are being held from June 10. LBLI League Competitions were cancelled. Winter Season- indoor bowling in Clubhouse will depend on C-19 situation in the autumn, as will access to ALLSA bowling links. Catering is provided as designated by Management Committee. Members are informed by email. 

The officers of bowling club will remain in their positions for 2021,

1)Structure of Bowling Club 

The Club is operated in accordance with the Constitution of the Clontarf Golf and Bowling  Club & Rules and Regulations of the Bowling Club of the Clontarf Golf and Bowling Club Clontarf (available from the receptionist) by the Bowling Club Committee. 

Bowling Club Committee (12) members 2021.The committee meets 8 times per year. 

No. Position Incumbent Role
1. Captain Peter Laird Term of office one year, Chairs  meeting of bowling committee,  represents club at BLI/and Clontarf Golf and Bowling  Club Management Committee
2. Vice Captain John Hackett Term of office one year and then becomes Captain, attends meetings  of Bowling Club Committee and Clontarf Golf Club Management  Committee (Non voting rights).  Nominates next Vice Captain.  Deputizes for Bowling Captain.
3. Ex Officio Derek Kirwan Derek was Captain 2019,
4. Secretary Yvonne Keogh Prepares minutes of meetings,  dispatches notice and agenda of  each meeting, attends to correspondence, ensures that the decisions and directions of Bowling Committee and Management Committee are  implemented. Other duties as  listed in Rules and Regulations of  Bowling Club (16in total)
5. Competition  

Secretary and 

Denis Murphy Organise all competitions for the  Bowling Club in accordance with  Rules and Regulation of Bowling  Club
6. Treasurer Joan Doyle Is responsible for reporting on, monitoring and controlling the  financial affairs of the Bowling  Club. See Rules and Regulations 
7. Ladies Team  


Ann Louise Mulhall With Lynn Foy
8. Committee Member Catherine Hazlett Vice President LBLI
9. Committee Member Brendan Darcy
10. Committee Member Dorothy Dwyer
11. Committee Member Dermot Halpin
12. Committee Member Aidan Foy Greens officer, assisted by Shay  Carberry, Ann O’Reilly

Sub Committees: Bowling Sub Committee, Handicap Committee, Equality and Integration  Committee and Social Committee, New Members’ Committee . The assistance of members with these committees is greatly appreciated 

Communication: The Clontarf Golf and Bowling Club sends out texts and emails of Club and Social Events, Meetings and deaths of Members. The bowling club also send out texts and emails specific to bowling members keeping members informed of club events. There are Whats App groups for  members too. 


Club Diary & Bye –Laws The Golf and Bowling Club Diary and Bye Laws is issued annually with information on club contact details, club hours, officers and committees, club bye laws including Bowling Club Bye –Laws, events and members contact numbers of the three clubs. Have you given in your mobile number and or home phone number and email address to the General Manager.  

Club Monthly Newsletter: The club produces a monthly newsletter, which is circulated to all members by email and is also available at reception desk. It contains news, competition  results, social events and photographs from all three clubs –mens golf, ladies golf and bowling club 

Club Website: Bowling Club Section www.clontarfgolfclub.ie/bowling Club Fees are paid in November and May. Members will be notified of current fees by email

Green Fees : If you have invited a non-member to play it is imperative that the person wears  the right type of shoes and that you play green fees for your visitor before you play. Green Fees are € 7 and are paid to barman on duty. Visitors are presently prohibited due to Government restrictions. 

Handicaps: Players are given a handicap by the Handicap Committee. Handicaps range from  0-12. New members may get a handicap of 2 depending on their previous bowling experience. The Handicap Committee will review handicaps based on player’s performance. 

Bowling Clubhouse  

Entrance: access can be gained through front doors or side entrance 

Entrance Area: Notice Boards, Competition Notice Boards, Club bowls stock, table and chairs. 

Ladies Locker Room and toilet: there is also a notice board in lockers room. Contact Bowling Club Secretary re lockers and keys. 

Mens Locker Area and toilet. Contact Aidan Foy re lockers and key 

Side entrance key and code are available from Bowling Club Secretary 

Equipment Shed: green building next to clubhouse and contains jacks, mats, scoreboards and ruler. Contact Bowling Club Secretary re code for lock.

Lawn Bowling Rinks  

There are 6 beautifully maintained grass rinks in front of the Bowling Clubhouse. Each rink has a number of coloured markings (white, yellow, blue and red) at each end. White markers are placed on the designated colour , these include the number of the rink, edges of the rink which designates the area of rink to be used in each game. White markers on the sides of  rinks designate whether the distance from mat to jack is greater/equal to 23 metres. The  greens are usually cut on a Monday, Wednesday and Friday from 10 30-11 30. 

Summer Bowl Season; April to end of September 

Winter Bowls– October to March. Ann Louise Mulhall & Joan Doyle organise bowling on a  synthetic green in ALSSA near the Airport on a Monday . 

Indoor Bowls; The club organises indoor bowling on 2 mats in the Clubhouse bar on a Tuesday from October to April at 6pm and 8 pm 

2) What are the usual Calendar of Club and Social Events 

Title Date Where Held
Unfurling 21st March The Event is  

held at the flag  poles beside the  clubhouse,  

bowling green  and in the West  Wing .

President, Bowling  Captain, Golf Lady and  Male Captain and bowling  members attend. Club and  National Flags are  unfurled and first bowls of  the new season are bowled  by President, Bowling  Captain, Golf Lady and  Male Captain there is a reception afterwards in the  west wing 


May –September See listing belowBowling Rink Competition entrance sheets will be circulated to  members at the social  event following the Unfurling Ceremony
Clontarf Pairs 

Clubs Open  


June Bowling Rink
Finals Day Second Sunday  SeptemberBowling Rinks Finals of all the club  


Golfer Bowler  


Organised by  

Aidan Foy 

Bowling Rink  and Clubhouse
Golfer & Bowler V  Golfer & Bowler  CompetitionOrganised by  

Denis Lynch

AGM January In the West  

Wing of Clubhouse 

Notice and reports for  AGM is emailed to members copies available at reception, club website and bowling club notice board

Social Activities; Number of events organised by Social Committee. Clontarf BC is a friendly club and members are encouraged to get involved with the social events organised by the Social Committee 

Name Where Held Date around which  events are usually  


Contact Person
Reception after  


West Wing of Club  Hse21 March
Social Bowls Lawn Every Tuesday and  Friday from April – September at 1. 30 or  2pmOrganised by Anne Loughman there is a  small fee
Roll and Bowl Lawn 10 May
Clontarf Pairs Club Dining Room
Deceased Members  Remembrance  


Lawn 6th or 23rd August
Fundraising Day Lawn-Round Robin  competition27 September 
Captains Dinner 

Presentation of  

Competition Winners

Club Dining Room 21 November
Presentation for  


Social Bowls 

West Wing December
A Number of Social  Bowling holidays are  organised each year
Westport Woods 


Westport , Co Mayo Feb 


5 day bowling 


Anne Phelan, Ann  


Torremolinos, Spain Don Pedro Hotel,  

which has 6 Bowling  rinks 7 or 10 days  

bowling holiday 

Oct Anne O Reilly Anne  Phelan in association  with Anne Mullins, The Travel Broker, Vernon Ave Clontarf

3)What Equipment Do I need and where can I get it ? 

Bowling Equipment required 

Shoes : Flat soled shoes, bowling shoes are usually white and available from suppliers listed  below. Check if there is a specific colour for the teams. Remember that a game of bowls can take from three to four hours to complete. Therefore, it is essential that your choice of footwear be for comfort rather than anything else. 

Bowls: set of four bowls 

Bowling Bag and or sling; For carrying your bowls, rain gear and measures. Trolley bags are dearer but are less cumbersome in the long run. 

Bowling Clothing: There is a dress code on the Bowling Green (Page 11 of Club Diary) Tops should have a collar and sleeve, Ladies may wear sleeveless tops with collars. Blue denim jeans, frayed or ripped clothing, tracksuit tops or bottoms, sports shorts, combat type multi-coloured & multi-pocketed shorts of any length or style are not permitted. Properly tailored knee length shorts are permitted when worn with sports socks. Check with team manager for colour of team uniform. 

Rain Gear: Should be white top and trousers check with team manager Measure Box & Chalk– get your name put on equipment 

Gloves: for your bowling hand can be purchased in the Golf Professionals Shop next to the first tee or from the suppliers listed below. 

Scorecard holders and pen: Can be purchased in the suppliers listed below 

Buffer Cloths for cleaning your bowls micro fibre cloths or chamois which can be  purchased in a hardware shop 

Hand Warmers: instant hand warmers (last 8 hrs) can be purchased in Dealz or equipment  suppliers listed below 

Peaked Cap or Visor and sunglasses for sunny weather

Choosing Your Bowls 

When buying your bowls remember that: 

  1. The bowl must not be too large for your hand 
  2. You will need a set of four 
  3. The “matched” set – should be of the same make and model, size, weight, colour, bias, serial number and engraving 
  4. First quality new bowls are expensive, but a good second-hand set can be obtained at a reasonable price 
  5. Well known firms are to be preferred 
  6. The advice of an experienced player is invaluable

What Bowls Suit You? 

  1. Experiment with bowls of different sizes and weights to see which are the more comfortable for you. You should borrow them from the club’s stock or club members who will be happy to offer advice. 
  2. Above all ensure the bowls you go for feel right and are comfortable to play with.
  3. Brands of Bowls

Tom Taylor, Drakes Pride, Henselite – Almark, Emsmo 

Bowls Sizes 

Size Weight
00 Medium Heavy
Medium Heavy
Medium Heavy
Medium Heavy
Medium Heavy
Medium Heavy
Medium Heavy
Medium Heavy

Each manufacturer has a range of bowls with a different bias. Most bowls are available in Black or Brown, Coloured Bowls have been only available in the Heavy i.e. 1 H 

The chart below highlights the bias and different trajectories of the various models from the  manufacturers. This visual guide should help you to further refine your choices of bowls and  which to consider purchasing.

The ideal bowl is one that feels most comfortable in the hand and flows most smoothly from  the hand onto the green during the bowling action. 


Name/Addr essAddress Tel/website Supplies
The Billiard Company111,Marlborou gh St 

Dublin 1 – 

opposite the 

Abbey Theatre

Tel 01 8729420 

www.thebilliardcompany.i e

Drakes Pride bowling gear, 

Bowls, Jacks, Bowl Bags and Carriers, Trolley bags, measures Bowl lifter Shoes, Clothing,

Sportsden Kennedy 

Place, Navan, Co Meath 




Range of  

Bowls, Equipment, Clothing  and Rain Gear 

No postage costs for orders  over €100.






,115,Milltown Rd, 


7XP , 

N. Ireland

belfastindoorbowls@btcon nect.com , Their website is being updated.Large range of 

Bowling equipment and clothing available at their shop. Also an on line service

Ballybrakes BowlsBallymoney 

N. Ireland

Tel 07737281848 

www.ballybrakesbowls.com ROI Agent John Murphy 086- 3835789

Range of Aero, Drakes Pride Henselite, Taylor and second hand bowls, Ladies and gents shoes Bowling bags, clothing and waterproofs
Mary Kenny Tel: (01) 4938715, (087)  6440062 email  


agent for Taylor,  

Henselite & Drakes Pride,  has stock of shoes, wet  gear, trousers, measures, spray chalk,

E-Baywww.ebay.ie A number of members have purchased bowls and equipment through E-Bay


4) What is Bowling Etiquette and the Rules of Bowling ? 

BOWLER ETIQUETTE : Etiquette is mainly a code of behaviour whereby bowlers  treat one another the way they expect to be treated themselves. It helps to maintain  courtesy and sportsmanship in the game of bowls. 

  • Bowls should be played in a spirit of good sportsmanship and with good manners. Players should make every effort to win but should treat their opponents with courtesy. 
  • As soon as each bowl shall have come to rest, possession of the rink shall be transferred to the other team. 
  • By the time a player’s bowl comes to rest they should be behind the mat or behind the head – not between the two. 
  • Players of each team not in the act of playing or controlling play shall stand well behind the head or a yard behind the mat. 
  • A player on the mat should not be interfered with, annoyed or have their attention distracted in any way by an opponent. 
  • Players at or behind the head should not move while a player is on the mat. Players behind the mat should not talk while a player is on the mat. Skips or thirds decide the number of shots – leads or seconds should not interfere. No bowls whatsoever should be disturbed or kicked away without the agreement of both of the thirds or skips. 
  • Do not waste time by dwelling too long on the mat or in protracted conferences. Do not follow bowls to the head unnecessarily. 
  • All bowlers should have a working knowledge of the WBB laws of the game and the bye-laws of their Association. 
  • Players must not make comments about an opposition bowl before it comes to rest eg, ‘go into the ditch’ or ‘hit my bowl’. 
  • The skip should enter the shots scored and total score cards each end and check this with the opposing skip each end. The skip may delegate this role to the Second. Before leaving the green at the conclusion of the final end the two skips must agree the final scores. 

Rules of Bowling Play 

See Club Diary-Bowling Club Bye Laws p 26 

The Following Bowling Club Bye Laws shall be deemed to have been amended on the 30th November 2020 and 10 February 2021 subject to, and in accordance with Rule 9.3.14 of the Rules and Regulations of the Bowling Club 

  1. All bowl used on the green must confirm to World Bowls specifications.  No member of the Bowling Club shall use bowls belonging to another Member without the permission of that Member. 
  2. Players, Umpires and Markers shall wear smooth –soled, heel- less footwear while playing on the green or acting as Umpires or Markers. 
  3. Players must not drop bowls onto the green. 
  4. No smoking permitted on the Green or on the environment of the green, in the clubhouse, on the veranda or the viewing stand. ALL smokers must use the Designated Smokers Area.


  1. Non–players shall not be allowed on the green or on the banks surrounding the green nor shall they distract or otherwise interfere with players on the green. 
  2. Members must not dispose of litter of any type, empty glasses, empty bottles anywhere in the environment of the bowling green. These items must be placed in the receptacles provided and all glasses returned to the bar. 
  3. Under Rule 19.1 the Bowling Committee shall establish the conditions under which Bowling Competitions are to be played. Any local Rules of Competitions, or amendments thereto, made by the bowling committee shall have effect until amended or revoked by such Committee or by a General Meeting of the Bowling Club. 

Rules of Bowling 

World Bowls Laws of the Sport of Bowls Crystal Mark Third Edition Version 3.1 available from www.burlingtonlbc.org. A copy is also available in Bowling Clubhouse. This 63 page booklet includes definitions rules on, Game Basics, Game Anomalies, Duties of Players and Officials, Administrative Matters, Appendices . Start with definitions and Game basics, 

Copies of World Bowls Laws of the Sport of Bowls Crystal Mark in booklet form, is available for a small fee, from the Treasurer Joan Doyle


5) What Competitions are played inside and outside the club? 

Club Competitions This is the usual format of club competitions  

Club : Entrance for Club competitions is usually done at the reception after the  Unfurling Ceremony in late March. Fees must be paid before matches commence. Competitions are played in accordance with Rules Governing Club Competitions. 

Name Format Eligibility Number of shots
Beginners Singles Competition New Members
Men’s Senior  


Singles Competition Four bowls Men.Handicaps are  from 7-1221
Ladies Senior  


Singles Competition Ladies 21
Mens Junior Singles Singles Competition Men, Handicaps 0-6 21 
Bowling Captain  PrizeSingles Competition Difference in  

handicaps applies

Ladies and  


Presidents Prize Singles Competition Ladies and  


Golf Captain Prize Mixed Pairs, played  with 4 bowls each  player. half the  

difference of  


handicaps applies 

Ladies and  


Lady Captain Prize Singles Ladies and  


Senior Citizens Single, four bowls  each, Difference in Handicaps appliesClub members over  70 yrs of age21 shots
Bowler of the Year: Decided by  

competition results

Competition sheets are on the notice board in Bowling Club entrance. Dates by which matches are to be played are listed, exemptions may be granted by Competitions Secretary.  Matches are arranged by the players. Markers for single matches should be organised with Competition Secretary. 

The Bowling Committee may review handicaps during the playing season and are  empowered to alter such handicaps where deemed necessary. In multiple player competitions  handicaps will be calculated as follows.  

Singles: lesser handicap player to play to 21. Higher handicaps player to play to 21 plus the  difference in the handicaps. 

Pairs: Half the difference of the combined handicaps (21Ends) 

Triples: One-Third the difference of the combined handicaps (18Ends) 

Rinks: one quarter the difference of the combined handicaps (21Ends) 

Following match Competition cards are signed by both players and put in box in the Entrance Hall) 


Finals Day will be set for the second Sunday in September please watch the Notice  Board 

Social Bowls, Tuesday and Friday at 2pm every week in the Summer Season. This event  is organised by Anne Loughman. There is a small fee to enter and a prize giving event is  held in west wing in November to distribute prizes. 

Clontarf Golfers Pairs V Bowling Pairs 

Clontarf Bowlers v Golfers  

Club Open Championship: The Clontarf Pairs this is a competition open to male and  female bowlers, held in June each year. Club and international bowlers take part. There is usually a very high standard of play. This is an event well worth attending. Put the date in your Diary 

Sponsorship: A number of companies sponsor our competition please support them. Cavehill Bowling Club: The men travel to Cavehill Bowling Club to play in the Logan Cup. 

Malone Golf and Bowling Club; This is a joint Golf and Bowling Competition which is played in Clontarf or Malone on alternate years. The bowlers play for the Friendship trophy which was designed and made by Denis Lynch. 

KC Cup is played with Kenilworth Bowling Club. It is usually played in May Cork CYM. 

LBLI/BLI Competitions

The Bowling League of Ireland and the Ladies Bowling League run a number of  Competitions throughout the year. Irish Lawn Bowls –www.irishlawnbowls.ie. lists the  competitions organised by both the Bowling League of Ireland and Ladies Bowling  League of Ireland. Match results are available on this website.  

BLI The Leagues 

BLI League Mens team are in Division 2 BLI and Vets Team are in Division 1. Captain, Selectors 2021 are Peter Laird, Aidan Foy, Kevin Marshal.  

LBLI: League the Ladies team are in Division 3. They won Division 3 in 2019. Team  Manager is Lynne Foy & Ann Louise Mulhall. 

Clontarf will have Presidency of the Ladies Bowling League of Ireland in 2022. On the nomination of Clontarf Bowling Club, Catherine Hazlett has been elected Vice  President of the LBLI in 2020/21 and incoming President for 2022.


Teams; Ladies _ Division 3- 8 Ladies. No.. of teams involved (8). 50% of  matches are held away 

Teams Managers Lynn Foy & Ann Louise Mulhall:   Mens & Women (2021)– BLI Division 2 No.-16 players   BLI Division 4 No.-12 players  Vets 2 Teams : Division 1 and Division TBD – 8 players per team  Team Manager: Peter Laird ( Vets) Team Captain:  Selectors Peter Laird, Aidan Foy, Ann Louise Mulhall, Lynn Foy,  

Uniform : Ladies Team Uniform; White tops, club logo. Navy jumper with club logo and white slacks.  

 Mens Team Uniform: White top with navy collar and red on button hole line, club logo (Available from Denis Murphy.) Navy slacks 

Team members should have the Clontarf Bowling Club logo on their uniforms. The  Logo can be attached to clothing by  

Irish Crests –The Uniform and Embroidery Company   Unit 4, Jamestown Business Park 

 Jamestown Rd , Finglas, Dublin.  

 Tel 01-8551886 www.irishcrest.ie

 See Team Play and Roles : page 23  

Members are encouraged to come out and support our teams especially at home  matches. Times will be put up on notice boards. 

LBLI -Events Page 16 

BLI -Events Page 17


LBLI Events-Details of the LBLI league and championship competitions are published in the The Pink Book (LBLI Diary) which comes out in April each year and on LBLI website www.irishlawnbowls.ie

Name Venue –heats Date Venue Final Date
Junior Singles Mc Keon Cup 21 shotsSkerries  

Bowling Club

Senior Singles Montgomery  CupSkerries  

Bowling Club

Junior Pairs 

W.W. Robinson  Trophy 

18 ends


Bowling Club

Junior Triples Rose IVIE  


18 ends 


Bowling Club

Junior Fours 

M&F Murphy Trophy 

18 ends 


Bowling Club

Senior Singles Skerries  

Bowling Club

Senior Pairs 

Moran Cup


Bowling Club

Senior Triples  Rhona Eager  TrophySkerries  

Bowling Club

Senior Rinks Skerries  

Bowling Club

Over 55s 

Anne Brophy  Cup


Bowling Club

Senior Fours  

Robinson Cup


Bowling Club


Clontarf Bowling Club would be delighted to see members participating in the LBLI Competitions. Ladies are encouraged to play in the Junior LBLI Competitions. It costs €7  each to enter competitions. Application forms on which you can express interest are usually available after the Clontarf unfurling on March 21.


BLI Championships-see www.irishlawnbowls.ie website for closing dates 

Name Venue –Heats/Dates Venue Final Dates
Marper Senior  

Singles Cup

Boyd Senior Pairs  Cup
Baird Senior Triples  Cup
Sixsmith Senior  

Rinks Cup

O’Leary over 55s  Cup
Nassau Junior  

Singles Cup

Tyler Junior Pairs  Cup 
BLI Cup Junior  

Triples Cup

MacCredy Junior  

Rinks Cup 

Railway Union 

U/25’s Cup

Bank of Ireland
Millane-Mixed Pairs Cup, Introduced 


Male and Female  

from same club, 

4 bowls each over 18  ends

Men can play in Senior BLI Competitions. Finals week: The week before August Bank holiday. 

Winter League: is organised by All Weather Bowling Association www.awblire.org Team Competition 

Matches are played from October to April. Teams include Ladies and gentlemen players.  Clontarf BC has one team in the league in Section 5. Team Manager: see website to get tables.


Clontarf Bowling Club Coaches 

Name Contact Number Day coaching
Shay Carberry Wednesday
Aidan Foy Wednesday

Guide to Bowling: a guide to bowling is being prepared by Denis Murphy-publication will be notified by text, email and website 

Lawn Bowling A Complete Beginners Guide is available from www.bowls.co.uk/flat green 

This in depth beginners guide will tell you everything you need to know about the game, the rules and bowls you’ll need to play . 

Coaching Videos 

New Zealand Bowls have a series of six Lawn Bowl Coaching Videos. These coaching videos are also available on You Tube.  These can be got through Google search engine. 

6)Tips for Bowling Well-See pages 19-23 

1) The Art of Bowling 

2) The Different Shots 

3) The Right Approach 

4) Being on the Green 

5) Team Play and Roles 

Terminology used in Lawn Bowling is on Pages 24-27








Lawn Bowls is a sport in which the objective is to roll biased bowls so that they stop close to a small bowl called a jack or ‘kitty’. It is played on a bowling green which can have a grass or synthetic surface. 

The game of Bowls combines accuracy, strategy, expertise and a lot of fun meeting new people 

Bank: the ditch must have a bank against its outer edge  

Bowls: the biased ball used in a game of bowls. The side of the bowl that is biased can be  identified by the smaller engraved concentric rings see. Compared to the outer (non biased) side of the bowl. 

Back Bowl: a bowl placed behind the head so that if the opposition trails the jack towards the back of the rink, the back bowl may become the shot.

Live Bowl: any bowl within the confines of the rink or a toucher in the ditch between the strings.  

Dead Bowl: a bowl is dead if it comes to rest in the ditch, passes completely outside the  boundaries of the rink in play. 

Back Hand for the right handed player ,delivering a bowl to left hand side of the rink. 

Bias; the curved path which a bowl travels from delivery until it comes to rest. The natural  curve built into the a bowl creating an arc from the point of releasing the bowl to the point it  stops. The bias is correct when the bowl curves towards the jack. 

Blocker: a bowl positioned on the green such that it would stop an opponent’s bowl from  reaching a defined point usually the jack. 

Callipers : a piece of equipment used by the umpire or a player, to judge the relative distance between the jack and one or more bowls. 

Centering the jack: placing the jack on the centre line of the rink, at the same distance from the mat line as it was when it came to rest. 

Claw Grip: A method of holding the bowl in your hand, where the running surface of the  bowl sits along the fingers of the hand, with the thumb held at or near the top of the bowl as a balancing mechanism. 

Cradle Grip: a method of holding the bowl in your hand, where the running surface of the  bowl sits cradled between the fingers in a cupping style. 

Delivery ; deliberately releasing a jack or bowl from the hand using an underarm movement.


Delivery of final bowl: it is not compulsory for the last player to play in any end to deliver  the final bowl of the end, but the player must tell the opposing skip or opponent in singles of the decision not to deliver the  

Dead draw: a bowl that becomes the shot bowl(closest to the jack) without touching any  other bowl during its delivery. 

Draw: The delivering of each bowl to a chosen point on the green-against the jack or to a point in front or to side of jack. 

Ditch: the green must be surrounded by a ditch. The ditch must be between 200milimetres 380mm wide and 50mm-200mm deep. Have a holding surface which is free from obstacles, made of materials that will not damage the jack or bowls. 

Drive Shot, (Firing Shot) is played with great force in order to remove one or more bowls from the head.

End: delivery of the jack, delivery of all the bowls required to be played by all of the opponents in the same direction on a rink and deciding the number of shots scored. 

Dead End: an end is declared dead if the jack is driven beyond the boundaries of play (unless it is in the ditch).

Foot fault: in games where a mat is used ,players are required to keep at least one foot on or over the mat during delivery. A foot fault occurs when this condition is not met.Players can  be warned or their bowl can be declared a dead bowl. 

Forehand: for the right handed player delivering a bowl to right hand side of the rink  

Grass: the directional line the bowl takes in order for it to curve towards the jack. So a “to  much grass” will be wide. 

Head: The collection of bowls around the jack as the end progresses 

Heavy: The pace at which a bowl is delivered that will pass by the jack. Use of too much force to deliver a bowl. 

Hot Shot: In a doubles match the team whose 8 bowls are nearest the jack are deemed to  have a HOT SHOT. A form is available from Club Secretary to be sent to where certificate and badge can be obtained for a fee.  

Jack: must be a solid sphere and either white or yellow. 

Live Jack in a ditch: Where the jack is in ditch within the boundaries of the rink Jack High: The bowl is opposite the jack on either side 

Lead: of the team to play first must place the mat and deliver the jack and make sure it is  centred before delivering the first bowl.


Lifter: An implement for lifting the bowl. 

Marker: in a singles competition a marker 

Mat: a rectangular piece of material, must be 600milmetres long by 360 mililitres wide which designates the point from which the jack and bowls must be delivered for a  particular end. You must stand on the mat when delivering jack and bowls. The mat must be  placed with the front edge at least 2 metres from the ditch. 

Minimum Length: the minimum length allowed between the mat and jack is 23 metres. Pace /speed at which a bowl is delivered 

Pairs: a game with 2 players on each side

Possession of Rink: the player or team whose turn it is to deliver a bowl is said to be in  possession of the mat. Possession passes to the opposition when the bowl has come to rest  after delivery. Possession also includes the possession of the head, an opposition player should remain away, from the head when not in possession of the mat. 

Position on mat: before delivery a player must be standing on the mat with all or part of at  least one foot on the mat

Resting toucher: The bowl finishes lying against the jack 

Skip: Player in charge of the team, all players in the team ,must follow the skip’s instructions. 

Second: the second player on the team 

Singles: a game where there is one player on each side 

The Shot: The bowl that is nearest the jack. 

Stance: a player shall take his stance on the mat and at the moment of delivery of his/her  bowl shall have one foot remaining entirely on the mat . the foot may be either in contact  with or over the mat. 

Tied end: There will be no shot scored by either team if it is agreed that the nearest bowl of each team is touching the jack 

The nearest bowl of each team is the same distance from the jack  No live bowls are left within the boundaries of the rink of play.   The end must be declared tied and recorded on the score card as a completed end 

Third: the third player on a team of 4 with specific responsibilities 

Trial ends: before the start of play in any game, or before continuing an unfinished game on  another day, one trial end must be played in each direction. 

Triples: a game where there are 3 players on each side


Rink area in which play takes place usually a flat grassed area bounded by boundary stakes  

Toucher ; a bowl which in its original course on the green touches the jack. It is marked with  chalk to denote its status and it remains live even if it is subsequently ends up in the ditch. A  toucher can be very valuable in the event of a ditched jack. 

Weight: the force with which you deliver/ bowl a ball or bowl . The momentum imparted to the bowl during the delivery. 

Wick: Hit off a stationary bowl with your bowl to land nearer the jack 

Compiled by Ann Louise Mulhall 

If there was any other information that you would like to know and you consider would be  useful for new members please let me know.