The Basic Action
The importance of the front shoulder & front arm action in bowling:
The shoulder :
The front shoulder gives direction to the delivery. In batting, we’ve seen how the front shoulder moves down first and then up to play the straight bat strokes and it also assists in the straight back swing and down swing of the bat. But in bowling, it’s the upward and downward movement of the front shoulder that is vital. The upward movement (winding) of the front shoulder at the point of the back foot landing helps to bring the front shoulder down briskly (unwind) in the direction of the target. This upward and downward movement of the shoulder adds to acceleration of the upper body.
Front arm (non-bowling arm) action :
The front arm plays a vital role in bowling well. When the bowler hops in his penultimate stride to land on his back foot, it is recommended that both arms be kept close to the body. This will ensure good balance.
The front arm goes up when the back foot lands, and it moves forward in the direction of the target and then front elbow is quickly tucked – like a piston – into the side of the body, just below the ribs. Bowlers who bend their front elbow before tucking it into the side of the body are said to have a short lever front arm action. The front arm action dictates the speed of the upper body and the bowler who has a short lever front arm action can generate more speed due to a rapid front arm action.
The bowler who keeps his front arm straight throughout the bowling action is said to have a long lever front arm action. It is observed that the bowlers with long lever action use and depend on upper body strength to move the front arm at great velocity.
The bowling arm, in co-ordination with the front arm, is quickly thrust downwards after completing an arc with the opening and straightening of the elbow. The release point of the ball and the wrist action largely depends on the type of bowler and the type of delivery intended to be bowled.