BOWLS - THE SPORT FOR ALL
Bowls (Lawn Bowls) is an ancient sport still enjoyed
around the world by hundreds of thousands of people. Bowls is a
comparatively simple sport to play, yet vibrant, dynamic and exciting,
suitable for young and old alike, the physically fit or physically
Whilst bowls has its roots on grass played outdoors,
use of synthetic surfaces is rapidly increasing, both outdoors and
indoors. Facilities may be specially constructed or transportable
mats used both outdoors and indoors.
To get started, the basic equipment is the level playing
surface, foot mats and target ball (jack). Individuals would require
flat soled shoes and a set of bowls (four bowls in a set, each weighing
The object of the game is to get one or more of your
team's bowls closer to the jack (a little white or yellow ball)
than your opponents. Each game has a specified number of "ends"
and the winning team is the team that has accumulated the most points
in the game. Games can be singles (one player per team), pairs (2
players per team), triples (3 players per team) or fours (4 players
per team). The number of bowls per player is determined by the number
of players per team.
Bowls are not round but have a "bias" so they run
in a curved line. One side of the bowl is "weighted" (the bias)
and the curve goes towards the bias. Each set of bowls has an individual
serial number and an identifying logo. As well as different sizes
of bowls there are bowls with different biases that make their travelling
path wider or narrower.
A bowling green is divided into rinks which are 4.3
to 5.8 metres wide and 31 to 40 metres long. There are usually 6
or 8 rinks per green.
Each player has a position on a team; the lead plays
first, then the second, followed by the vice (third) and finally
the skip. The skip is the person who directs the play during the
game. As with all sports, there is a set of rules to be followed.
The Laws of the Sport of Bowls is published by World Bowls and is
Bowls can provide you with open air exercise, comradeship,
improved mental and physical facilities. Standard competitions normally
last around 3 hours per match but some can be shorter.
Bowls can be played at any level of competition, from
socially to the highest levels of international competition. All
persons are able to participate, so long as the bowl can be hand
held and delivered.
Physically and visually [with either the help of a
guide or a string laid down the middle of the rink] challenged people
including those in wheelchairs play by the same Laws.
Bowls is a core sport of the Commonwealth Games but
is not yet an Olympic sport. World Bowls hosts a number of World
events every year with its premier event "World Bowls" every four
years in which 24 countries qualify to take part. Other major international
events are hosted by many countries throughout every year.
World Bowls is the Governing Body for the sport of
bowls. Its headquarters are in Scotland. Currently there are 47
World Bowls member countries who's Clubs belong to their National
Authority which is the member of World Bowls. Many National Authorities
hold international events at which their fellow National Authorities
are invited to participate in.
World Bowls is able to provide advisory assistance
on the construction of the playing surface, administration training,
coaching, and Technical Official training.
The World Bowls web site www.worldbowlsltd.com
contains a great deal of useful information as well as links to
member National Authorities and other relevant organisations
Current members of World Bowls are
ARGENTINA, AUSTRALIA, BOTSWANA, BRAZIL, BRUNEI,
CANADA, CHINA, COOK ISLANDS, CYPRUS, ENGLAND, FALKLAND ISLANDS,
FIJI, FRANCE, GUERNSEY, HONG KONG, INDIA, IRELAND, ISLE OF MAN,
ISRAEL, JAPAN, JERSEY, KENYA, MACAO, MALAWI, MALAYSIA, MALTA, NAMIBIA,
NETHERLANDS, NEW ZEALAND, NIUE, NORFOLK ISLAND, PAKISTAN, PAPUA
NEW GUINEA, PHILIPPINES, PORTUGAL, SCOTLAND, SINGAPORE, SAMOA, SOUTH
AFRICA, SPAIN, SWAZILAND, THAILAND, TURKEY, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES,
UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, WALES, ZAMBIA, ZIMBABWE.
For more information please contact World Bowls
Sportscotland, Caledonia House,
1 Redheughs Rigg,
South Gyle, Edinburgh, EH12 9DQ