How to Throw a Fingertip Bowling Ball

Woman's hand throwing ball in bowling club.

The fingertip bowling grip gives you more control over the ball’s lateral spin than a conventional grip or semi-fingertip grip. With the fingertip grip, you will be able to bowl advanced shots such as the hook more easily. You can use the hook shot to knock over pins left standing at one side of the lane, or to hit all 10 pins with greater force from a better angle for more strikes.

Place the thumb of your dominant hand all the way into the thumb hole.

Place the tips of your middle finger and ring finger into the two finger holes. Your top knuckles should rest inside the holes, but the rest of your fingers should remain outside the holes.

Place your other hand on the side of the ball to support it until you start your backswing.

Support the ball with the palm and thumb of your bowling hand during the backswing. Keep the palm behind the ball and slightly under it as you swing forward.

Release the ball from your thumb while it remains above your thumb as you begin to swing forward. If your thumb sits higher up on the ball at the moment you release it, you might put unwanted vertical spin on the ball.

Release the ball from your fingertips after you release it from your thumb. Just before you release the ball, rotate your fingers sharply up and to the side to put spin on it. Right-handed bowlers should move their fingers and their palm up and to the right and release the ball with their palm on the right side of the ball. This rotation should hook the ball from right to left. Left-handed bowlers should rotate their fingers and palm in the opposite direction to hook the ball from left to right.

Accelerate your forward swing as you release the ball. Continue your swing motion with a follow through after the release.


Practice the semi-fingertip grip as a transition between the conventional grip and the fingertip grip. To bowl with the semi-fingertip grip, insert your fingers slightly farther into the holes so that your second knuckle sits inside the holes. Once you feel comfortable with this grip, move on to the true fingertip grip.