What Are the Bumpers in Bowling and How Do They Work

What Are the Bumpers in Bowling and How Do They Work?

Bumpers in bowling is another sort where standard bowling has altered a foe for a specific reason. In this piece of writing, I will try to give a detailed interpretation of bumper bowling.

Bumper Bowling – Explanation

In bumper bowling, the bowling lane’s channels are concealed so that the ball remains on the lane around the clock. In this regard, the ball doesn’t go down in the channel or gutter. Consequently, the possibility of striking the pins rise.

It is specifically intended for little children and disabled people. Most often, people get frustrated when they cannot strike the pins because their ball always slips into the gutter of a bowling lane.

It usually happens with newcomers, and therefore concealing the gutters with bumpers to prevent the ball from going is the best way to convince people and increase their attraction towards the game.

At this moment in time, the majority of bowling alleys have the equipment to activate the bumpers. You might also request them to activate the bumpers for a particular player.

Bumpers stop the ball from going down in the gutters, increasing the possibility of striking the pins. Bumpers are not activated for all the bowlers. Instead, you are required to ask the desk for particular bowlers.

What is a Mechanism of Bumper Bowling?

Just like a standard bowling game, bumper bowling is played in the same way, you are only required to release the ball down the lane and try to strike down all the pins in the frame.

The only possible difference is that there are no channels in it, so you can have a higher possibility of striking no less than one pin in the frame.

Despite that, the possibility of striking down the pins does not rise as you have to release the bowling ball directly into the bowling lane, which is quite similar to the standard bowling ball.

Dissimilarities between Standard and Bumper Bowling

In standard bowling, normally there are channels at the side of each bowling lane, so, at any moment, the bowling ball is not delivered straight. It then ultimately goes down in the gutter without striking the pins, while on the other hand, the gutters are concealed in such a way as to increase the possibility of hitting pins.

In bumper bowling, the balls are comparatively lighter than customary bowling balls. It is specifically planned for kids and handicapped adults to make the sport more fun and easy for all the bowlers out there.

Is there any Age Limit for Bumper Bowling?

This kind of bowling is particularly formulated for kids and people who are normally disabled or handicapped, as they are incapable of bowling correctly, they are granted some benefits of bumpers in a way that they can still have fun and adore the game while not getting displeased on account of their balls falling into the gutter every time.

The balls usually do not weigh over the top; the upper limit of weight of a bowling ball in bumper bowling is around 6 pounds.

Some kids might start bowling at an early age. As a result, it becomes exceedingly hard for them to carry and throw the ball with a weight of 12 pounds with extreme power, even if they are ready for it, for the most part, because the ball doesn’t have all the force and the ball will go down in the channel. For this reason, bumper bowling is best for young kids with no gutters and a lightweight ball.

This is a perfect solution for the people who are only capable of bowling with little or almost no power and are disappointed because of the ball falling in the gutter every time.

This sort of bowling has eliminated the age restriction it had before, where people who can only carry those hefty balls and deliver them down the lane with power can enjoy bowling.

When to Apply Bumper in Bowling?

Many players are unaware of when and how to use bumpers while bowling a ball. Some people might believe they cannot go bowling, so they have to apply bumpers in bowling. Despite that, it is a different matter.

Teenagers, beginners, and people who are handicapped normally apply bumpers to make the game much easier. It causes the game to be fairer since players using more bumpers typically don’t have good aptitudes, enabling them to play without the ball falling into the gutter.

Some players might want to alter all over the game to apply the bumpers. A bowler might want to do this in many regards. Some of the motives maybe if you are not bowling properly, are attempting new approaches, or are a beginner. Some bowlers might want to get their confidence back.

Maybe that’s why they might put the channels on to ensure they strike down the pins and ultimately get the achievement. They are almost certainly having a proper game and choosing to experiment with a new technique.

In this way, they can strike down pins and can fight with others. Another cause you want to activate the bumpers in the middle of the game is maybe you are a newbie. You can experiment and try to roll a ball without using the bumpers to judge your capability in bowling.

When and How Bumper Bowling Was Invented?

Bumper bowling was principally originated by Philip Kinzer in 1982 in his bowling center in Dallas, which then slowly got distributed in different parts of the United States. He principally wanted to make bowling an entertainment sport and fun for everyone, regardless of their skills.

He highlighted that playing with bumpers on in a bowling alley is equal to playing a baseball game, excluding the worry of striking out. It actually altered the game so much that currently, there is no worry of striking zero; regardless of how you deliver the ball, you’ll still strike down some pins.

He actually conducted good work and provided us with an enjoyable bowling style. It also assisted in making the sports area a little fairer even though you strike the pins. The bumper does not alter the game’s complexity while allowing the players to improve their skills. You can only not activate bumpers when playing in a competitive environment because it would be unfair in the end.

Are Bumper Bowlers Permitted in Tournaments?

Normally, bumpers are called barriers preventing the ball from falling into the gutters on the side of a bowling lane. They are not officially permitted in any bowling league except in tournaments for children and handicapped. This is because these tournaments are legal, many bowlers participate in them, and the player should know how to deliver a ball in a straight manner to win consequently.

Bumper bowling does not actually make the game simpler because it obstructs the player from dropping the ball into the gutter. Despite that, the opportunity of getting a strike and spare is not expanded when the bumpers are up. You must be at the perfect angle to hit the pins accurately for strike and spare.

What is an Accurate Approach to Use Bowling Bumper?

Bowling bumpers are now at hand in different types, and in accordance with where you play in the universe, your practice can be different. Using a bumper while bowling is comparatively easy.

Types of Bumpers

The only difference is the sort of bumper you use in a bowling alley while bowling. To ensure that you know whatever you are touching on, here is the mechanism of various bowling bumpers. Some of these are as follows:

Ductile Blow-Up Bumpers

At the onset of the innovation of bumper bowling, the only type of bumpers at hand was flexible or plastic inflatable bumpers that were bloated each time the demand for them arrived.

At the start, the mechanics of filling the bumpers manually were present there to set them up when needed. However, the ductile bumpers were dumped after some time because of the extravagant amount of physical exertion and duration required to fill them.

Despite that, some bowling alleys still have these bumpers, but with mechanical pumps that bloat the bumper each time, they are required for children’s play.

Mechanical Retractile Bumper

These bumpers are framed in such a way as to be a component of the bowling lane structure. They are equipped with mechanics that enable them to be raised independently each time required on the sides of the bowling lane.

They are embedded under the bowling lane and linked with the circuitry of the bowling lane to conduct this way.

They are typically overpriced to invest in, but comparatively, they are extremely good in terms of proficiency and adjustability.

Bowling bumpers are certainly great innovations in the field of bowling balls and have been present for a considerable time now.

You should make it very sure that you use these bowling bumpers to aid your kids in understanding, learn about the bowling game and not depending on them all the time.

Steel Bumpers

Steel bumpers or barriers are usually situated on the sides of the lane in bowling alleys whenever required, and there is no need to fill them with anything at all.

If a game occurs between children aged around 10, these bumpers are brought out and situated as barriers on the sides of the lane to prevent the balls from going into the gutter.

Aside from maintaining these bumpers in their position, transferring them and storing them used to be a difficult kind of trial which is why they were terminated after some time.

In What Manner Has Bumper Bowling Altered the Industry?

It has permitted many people in the bowling game and made them feel confident about their skills while making the game an easy and fun activity to carry out with families.

Consequently, attracting a crowd of audience towards it plays a crucial role in generating the most revenue from bowling. It took the game to a whole new level, as any individual can have fun while playing a bowling ball.

It enables families to step out and have quality time with their loved ones without anybody getting disappointed due to their skills and abilities.

Final Considerations

Bowling bumpers are undoubtedly significant inventions and have been present now for a long time. They may not be long-lasting settlements for the bowlers incapable of playing or unskillful bowlers.

Still, they can somehow aid you in getting to know and discovering more about the perfect techniques of throwing and striking down all the pins in a single attempt. It also ensures your children have a good time while easily playing with the bumpers.


What does “Bumper” in bowling means?

A bumper is typically called a barrier. In bowling, it is usually placed on gutters to conceal them and prevent the ball from going down in them.

What is the standard age for bumper bowling?

Bumper bowling is normally recommended for kids as young as 3 and as old as 7, including the handicapped as well or unskilled bowlers who are eager to play.

Who invented these bumpers in bowling games?

Initially, bumpers in bowling games were introduced by Phil Kinzer to prevent the ball from going down in the gutter.

Why gutters are present on the side of the lane?

They usually come in black to create a perfect outlook of the bowling lane; simultaneously, concurrently concealing and bowling balls get scratched. These are planted in a clip system way to easily get detached whenever a ball gets housed under the lane.

Is bumper bowling allowed for adults?

Even though bumper bowling is framed for kids and handicapped or unskilled players, there is no age restriction in bumper bowling.

At what age can you start bowling?

It’s different for each individual, but children can learn and pick up a ball at a minimum age of 3 years. Your kid must carry and throw a ball weighing around six pounds.

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