By Adriel Tan I-En (17S06C), Secretary; Carman Chew (17A01D), Girls’ Captain; Ryan Teo Zhi Kai (17S07C), Boys’ Captain
Bowlers are often asked: What do you do during training? Do you just go there and throw the ball? Despite what many may assume, throwing the perfect shot actually requires a carefully concocted combination of technical skills, physical stamina and mental stability.
Our coach, Uncle Yong, adopts an array of peculiar methods for our trainings. This includes balancing rings on our heads as we bowl, ‘going on holiday’, which involves walking up and down the alley with 2 ten-pound balls, and the much dreaded ‘shoe sacrifices’, where we place our shoes at the foul line to practise extending our shots.
On top of expanding our technical knowledge, bowling practice also tests one’s patience and perserverance. This is especially so when we attempt to remain calm after a bad shot or after another bowler’s ball crashes into our clean white shoes. With only that many throws, keeping our emotions in check is key in making sure that every shot counts.
Apart from training at Orchid Country Club, we do have physical trainings so that bowler’s can still maintain their fitness during non-peak periods. During these sessions, we go for runs, have circuit trainings and play other games, such as netball or soccer.
Regardless of how strange or even ‘hardcore’ this regime might sound, it is with this formula that our bowlers have managed to clinch the top positions in this year’s ‘A’ division competitions: We managed to beat the tough competition to the see the girls coming in 1st place and the guys coming in 2nd.
If you’re a non-competitive soul, and all this talk of trainings and competitions sound too much, you would be heartened to know that we also host a variety of more casual bonding activities throughout the year. Upon entering the CCA, J1s would usually have an induction outing so as to get to know their seniors better. Nearer to competition season, we would also hold a March camp to build up our camaraderie. But nothing beats the memories formed during our informal sleepover the day before ‘A’ divisions where one discovers the full assortment of different characters/personalities in the CCA.
What’s more, our small batch size allows for more interactions and for stronger bonds to be forged. This is essential because contrary to popular belief, teamwork is another pivotal factor for the success of a bowler. Unlike other CCAs that show more tangible examples of teamwork, the teamwork bowling requires is one of maintaining a high team synergy, which gives each bowler the zest to push through long and wearisome tournaments.
Besides building stronger ties within the CCA, this coming year, the batch will also be organising a batch CIP event to reach out to the wider community as well. This year, bowlers would have an opportunity to interact with primary school children from single parent and/or low-income families and to teach them how to bowl afterwards.
So, back to your question on what a bowler does. The short answer is: bowling is really so much more than just routine training sessions. The skills and values – not to mention the friends – that you pick up in this CCA will stay with you for a long long time. If you’re a passionate spirit up for a challenge and looking to join a closely knit community, then look no further, for we warmly welcome you to the bowling family.