What To Look For In A Bowling Shoe
At some point in your bowling life, you might start thinking about what kind of a bowling shoe you really should have. When you first started bowling, the rental shoe served its purpose well. And, if you are an occasional bowler, that may always be the case. If so, you really don't have to be concerned about what to look for in a bowling shoe.
Of course there are people who just don't like wearing a shoe that someone else's foot has been in, even though the shoes are disinfected at the lanes after each use , usually by UV light. Still, I've never heard of a single death, or serious illness, attributed to rental shoes. But, if you start bowling with greater regularity, at some point you just might feel there's something about having your own shoes that makes sense.
When you deliver the ball, you want your shoes that slide, though not too much. Shoes that slide make bowling much easier for the beginning bowler. An advanced bowler may well opt for a bowling shoe that has a braking characteristic. Notice I said shoe, not shoes. More about that in a moment.
In buying your first bowling shoe you have a choice. You can go for what is usually called an athletic shoe, or purchase a performance shoe. The athletic shoe is constructed more along the lines of a running or cross-training shoe. Besides a good fit, you get extra comfort and support. The support is an especially important factor, providing stability when you deliver the ball, thereby helping your game. What you have in effect is a regular athletic shoe, with a sliding sole.
If you choose a high-performance shoe, things get a little more complicated. If you're still a beginner, the athletic shoe is probably your best bet, but no one is going to try to stop you from getting a high performance shoe. In this type of shoe, the sole is the name of the game, and while the bowling shoe that goes on one foot may have one type of sole, the shoe that goes on the other foot will have a different type. You can even buy shoes that allow for interchangeable soles. For the advanced or competitive bowler, the sliding shoe makes the delivery and release of the ball much smoother, the braking shoe, on the other foot, gives traction during the approach which helps the bowler maintain good balance.
Taking this to an even higher level, interchangeable soles come in handy when you want your approach to be as smooth and coordinated as possible. Different bowlers have different styles of approach and delivery, and will benefit from different types of bowling shoe soles. Just as in so many other aspects of bowling, it is these details, which at times seem like nit-picking nuances, which incrementally improve a bowler's game, giving the bowler a razor thin advantage of the competition.
There's one more thing to consider if you're going to purchase your own shoes. This isn't anything that will make your bowling better, but just might make you feel good. That is the style of the bowling shoe. Your bowling shoe doesn't have to be black, or white, or as seems to be the case with many rental shoes, a nondescript mouse-brown color. You can buy shoes with colors to match your personality, be it red hot or very cool, or something in between. It would seem to make sense, particularly if you're going to fork over extra cash for a top-notch pair of performance shoes, that you get a pair you enjoy looking at as well.